A Tour of Art Basel Miami Beach 2011

In which we offer a brief preview of the fair in 34 photographs

  • The tenth edition of Art Basel Miami Beach began earlier today, with VIP card holders—including Diddy, Rush Hour director Brett Ratner, China Chow, Morley Safer, Jeffrey Deitch and just about everyone you would expect to be there—descending on the Miami Beach Convention Center to survey the art on offer by some 260 dealers.

    As we type this, the crowds at the vernissage are ramping up, though the atmosphere for most of the day was relatively calm, almost serene. Collectors were buying, though it was no feeding frenzy. Many dealers claimed to be relatively pleased. It is early, though, and we are going to hold off on making any proclamations about the state of the market for the moment.

    For now, we offer a brief tour of the fair in the slide show above.

    Are there identifiable trends? Gallerist spotted quite a few Gerhard Richters and Sigmar Polkes, as well as a bevy of Kusamas and Calders. Which is to say that this year’s fair features the type of art that usually pops up at blue-chip art fairs.

    That said, there are some nice surprises, like L&M’s booth, which is lined with Warhol wallpaper and drawings, and the shock-and-awe Kruger installation that is wrapped around Mary Boone’s redoubt.

    arusseth@observer.com

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