Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Miami Art Fairs: VIP Openings Start!

Tonight is the VIP opening of Art Miami, which a lot of people consider to be second in the art fair food chain after the "real" Art Basel fair.

Art Miami is such a draw for key blue chip galleries, that its well-earned number two spot (ahead of Pulse at number three and Scope at barely holding onto number four) has allowed its owners to start yet another, separate fair (Context) to which a lot of the Pulse and worthy Scope galleries have flocked to.

Both Art Miami and Context have their VIP openings tonight... CONNERSMITH and the tiny Curator's Office are the only two DMV area galleries in this blue chip group - a well earned distinction to the hard work of its owners.

So it looks like Scope is about to be shoved down to number five on the food chain, and I wouldn't be surprised if Context gathers more attention (and sales) than Pulse and becomes number three for its Art Miami owners.

VIP tickets are non-transferable, so I did not, I repeat, I did not give my VIP pass to a DMV area artist who may or may not walking around Art Miami and Context tonight pretending to be "F. Lennox Campello"... cough, cough.

I'm exhausted from hanging work for my own presence at the Aqua Art Fair (voted by a HUGE margin as the best art fair for "emerging artists"), so there's no chance that my tired feet will be hanging around the VIP openings tonight, but many DMV area artists will be schmoozing, scarfing up the free food and booze and handing out business cards at the event, such as Tim Tate (who's exhibiting at Art Miami with Ireland's primo gallery Blue Leaf), Judith Peck, Audrey Wilson, my Norfolk dealer Sheila Giolitti and many others.

Talking about hanging artwork, first horror story of the fair: British artist Simon Monk, who is part of my curated "Superheroes and Super Villains" exhibit at Aqua shipped his work from the UK delivery with Monday delivery guaranteed.

When it didn't show up on Monday, I contacted him and a very worried Monk then spent hours and hours on the phone in the UK trying to find out where his shipment was.

Many hours later, he informs me that his
"... wife has literally been on the phone all day trying to get to the bottom of what has happened to my crate.  After battling through obstruction after obstruction she discovered that the crate had never left the UK!  Apparently Fedex thought there was a problem with the paperwork but it turned out they had simple not looked at it properly and admitted that it was all in order.  What I find most frustrating is that they claimed to be 'waiting for information' but had made no attempt to contact me - I genuinely believe that if my wife had not pursued this the crate could have simply sat at Stansted Airport indefinitely - so much for 'next day delivery'. "
Yeah FEDEX... what's up with that?

I told Monk that whenever his work shows up it will be hung!