Posts tagged with "Art Basel":

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Creative Time brings interactive urbanism and Recetas Urbanas to Art Basel 2018

Spanish architecture studio Recetas Urbanas (Urban Recipes) will be leaping to this year’s Art Basel, courtesy of New York-based arts organizer Creative Time. In the group’s first international commission, Creative Time has organized Basilea, a series of interactive projects for Basel, Switzerland locals and international fairgoers alike. Basilea will sit on Basel’s Messeplatz and involve visitors through a combination of talks, hands-on workshops, observations, and even through soliciting their help to build the pavilions. By involving the public, Basilea aims to empower guests to re-examine their role as citizens and the effect they can have in civic systems. In the three weeks leading up to Art Basel’s opening on May 23, Recetas Urbanas, headed by architect Santiago Cirugeda, will construct a public pavilion with help from volunteers. The “multi-purpose civic structure,” which will resemble an auditorium, will be built from locally-sourced and found materials, while the participants (fairgoers can sign up here) will be encouraged to learn from each other in a mutual sharing of ideas. After a run of performances and as-of-yet undetermined talks, the future home of the venue will be handed over to the public to vote on. Recetas Urbanas is well known in Spain for their low-cost “guerilla” structures, and previously represented Spain at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. Spanish artist Lara Almarcegui, who represented Spain at the 2013 Venice Biennale, will construct a large-scale “quarry” installation made of gravel that will surround the finished Recetas Urbanas pavilion. The piece will grow daily over the course of the fair, as gravel mirroring the amount removed from a local Basel quarry will be deposited on the Messeplatz, and ask viewers to consider the destructive impact humans have on the environment. Dominican-American artist Isabel Lewis will round out Creative Time’s program, and using her training in dance and philosophy, and experience staging interactive shows, will host a series of workshops and events. Throughout the fair, Lewis will encourage visitors to rethink how they conceive of “self” versus “community”, and how citizens form relationships with the urban space around them. Basilea marks the first time the trio of artists will collaborate with each other, and their program at Art Basel should layer and complement each other’s work. Art Basel 2018 will run from May 23 through June 17.
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L.A. artist Oscar Tuazon will recreate Steve Baer’s Zome House at Art Basel

The international annual art fair Art Basel originally started in Switzerland in 1970 and since then has branched out to Miami Beach in 2002 and Hong Kong in 2013. But Art Basel is not just about artists working in the fine arts of painting, drawing, and sculpture. This June, Art Basel in Switzerland will feature a decidedly architectural work by the Seattle-born, and currently Los Angeles-based artist, Oscar Tuazon. Tuazon's piece, Zome Alloy, on view June 13-19 in the Art Basel Messeplatz, is modeled after the 1972 Zome House designed and built by the southwest inventor Steve Baer. In the 1970s, Baer created residences—often aluminum-skinned using car tops he and his wife bought from junkyards for 2 cents—heated through passive solar energy. The zomes are different from geodesic domes, in that they use a stretched polyhedron system. "[W]hen I was about 18 I started to read the writings of Lewis Mumford and I could see that we didn't have to have this 'either-or' choice. We could have the best of both...we could have a science and technology that could be understood and controlled by the individual instead of the other way around. I found the idea very exciting and I've been trying to crack the crap in science for 15 or 16 years now. I don't claim to have gotten anywhere but I'm trying," Baer told the magazine Mother Earth News back in 1973 in a long-form interview also with his wife Holly. "I'm most interested now in taking small steps...in developing individual pieces of equipment and hardware that really work and that really make economic sense. And even this is not an easy thing to do, it's just not easy." Tuazon is a sculptor who works in the overlapping space between installation, sculpture, and architecture. He studied architecture and urbanism in college and has worked with Vito Acconci. His pieces often explore the connections between public space and architecture through raw and industrial materials. “I hope that the effect of my work is mostly physical. That’s what I like—walking through something, having an experience of the weight of things, or an experience of balance," says Tuazon. "That kind of really basic physical thing makes the work interesting; it makes it disarming and strange." Visitors to Tuazon's Zome Alloy at Art Basel this June will find an update to the Baer house, built using robotically-manufactured structural panels made in Switzerland, rather than by hand. Tuazon will use a 3D mapping of Baer's Zome House to direct the fabrication. Tuazon is also organizing and hosting a series of talks on alternative building techniques and energy from inside the zome, dubbed the "Alloy Conference," based on the eponymous Baer-led original 1969 program. On a separate note, for those in the L.A. area, Tuazon's work is on display at the Hammer Museum, affiliated with UCLA, through May 15.
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Designer envisions a Miami Beach that embraces the rising sea

This year's Art Basel/Design Miami was a wash. The tallest stilettos could not save feet from floodwaters that inundated streets and forced partygoers under small tents. Even when it's not raining, water bubbles up through stormwater grates and sewers, a result of the city's porous limestone bedrock. Miami Beach is a barrier island that is routinely battered by hurricanes and floods. With global warming, the bad floods will only get worse. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, NASA, and NOAA predict sea level rise between eight inches and six feet by 2100. For these reasons, Harvard GSD's newly established Design Office for Urbanization selected Miami Beach as its first focus site. Though unaffiliated with Harvard, a recent Florida architecture grad would make a great contribution to the program. Designer Isaac Stein, at West 8's New York office, envisions a solution for incorporating rising seas into Miami Beach's urban design, Vanity Fair reports. While completing an undergraduate degree in architecture at the University of Miami, Stein drafted a plan for a mangrove forest, raised buildings, canals, and other design interventions that will bend to, not fight, the rising seas. The plan focuses on South Beach proper, from 5th to 15th Streets. One of Miami Beach's main thoroughfares, Alton Road, would be raised on stilts to accomodate floodwater. Trams would replace cars, and bike lanes would be installed along Washington Avenue, roughly parallel to and a few blocks inland from the Atlantic. Historically, Miami Beach's western (bay) side was lined with mangroves. Stein's plan restores the mangrove forest to provide a natural buffer against rising water. Canals would be cut in the medians Michigan, Jefferson, and Lenox Avenues. The resulting fill could be used to raise buildings and roads 1.5 feet above grade, would safeguard the city against six feet of sea level rise.
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Tell us what excites you about this year’s Design Miami

The Architect’s Newspaper will be in Miami this week for a slew of art and design events including Art Basel, Unbuilt, Design Miami, the Salone del Mobile preview, and launches of the new Institute of Contemporary Art and limited edition Ducati motorcycle. We have received a huge digital and paper file of official press releases but there may be scattered events and launches that have not landed on our desk. Is there anything the AN audience should know about on the edges of the official events? What are we missing? Let us know here in the comments below or tell us about your design highlights of the week!
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Unveiled> Fernando Romero plays the stacking game with the Latin American Art Museum in Miami

With Art Basel underway, not-quite-yet-starchitect Fernando Romero has unveiled new plans for what could become Miami's next architectural icon: the Latin American Art Museum (LAAM). That's right, this 90,000 square foot, cantilevering structure could overshadow the nearby works of his higher-profile peers like Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid, and Lord Norman Foster. And Jeanne Gang and Herzog & de Meuron. And also Bjarke Ingels and Enrique Norten, because Romero's—sorry, and Richard Meier and Rem Koolhaas. Okay, that has to be everyone. All starchitects have been accounted for. Where were we? Right, the Latin American Art Museum. Romero's firm, Fernando Romero EnterprisE (FR-EE) has created an arresting structure defined by generous, crisscrossing terraces that provide circulation and open-air gallery space called "sculptural gardens." Together, the rotated squares evoke a deck of cards being shuffled or an uneven stack of plates. “The different levels of the building define LAAM’S program,” FR-EE said in a statement. “The first floor will be reserved to young and emergent artists; the second one will be for temporal exhibitions; the third floor will house a selection of 600 pieces belonging to the permanent collection; finally, a restaurant will crown the top of the building.” In October, the Miami Herald reported that the museum is being funded by local art collector Gary Nader, and that it will heavily draw from his own collection. Right, kind of like George Lucas and his contested museum of narrative art in Chicago. Nader will reportedly build a residential tower on the same piece of property in Downtown Miami to help pay for the museum, which is expected to open in 2016.
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Design Miami/ unveils its pavilion for this year’s show

Design Miami/, the annual global design forum, has announced that Minneapolis-based designer Jonathan Muecke has been selected to design its pavilion for next month's show. For the coveted commission, Muecke created a cylindrical space accessible through two entrance points. The structure is finished in primary colors: red and green on the inside and blue and yellow on the outside. Within the circle is “seamlessly shaped seating” designed to “allow visitors a moment of quiet reflection.” While the design may seem fairly simple, Design Miami/ thinks the space will really come alive when the Florida sun comes through its translucent tarp, creating a "shifting topography of reflected color.” According to Design Miami/, Muecke’s practice “resists standard divisions between design, art and architecture, instead focusing on refined forms that investigate notions of positive and negative space, positional relationships to structures and the innate desire to read notions of functionality into objects that relate to human scale.” The young designer studied architecture at Iowa State, design at Cranbrook Academy of Art, and interned for Herzog & de Meuron in Basel, Switzerland. Design Miami/, which occurs alongside Art Basel, celebrates its 10th anniversary from December 3–7th. [h/t DawnTown]
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Voluntary Prisoners of Downtown Miami

Contemporary art curator and AN colleague Leanne Mella has organized a potent and compelling exhibition entitled The Prisoner's Dilemma for the Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation, known as CIFO, in downtown Miami. With noble intentions, given the socio-political climate of the recent past, the work in Mella's exhibition showcases the ways in which artists respond to the exercise of power in contemporary life. The politics of the show are highly nuanced, visually stunning, and often quite poetic. As the exhibit's introductory text explains:

"The works in this exhibition comment upon, confront and challenge strategies of totalizing power and social control. Issues of powerlessness, exclusion, conformity, marginality, transgression, subversion, escapism, transcendence, protest and resistance are all inventively addressed in this selection of works. 

These works and their expansive forms convey a great sense of scale, immediacy and connection to the viewing subject. Perhaps, because they are intentionally immersive in an age when conventional cinema has relinquished much of its phenomenological power in favor of media miniaturization and portability as represented by the rapid proliferation of DVDs, iPods and YouTube viewership.”

The show features work by leading artists such as Alexander Apóstol, Judith Barry, Paolo Canevari, Stan Douglas, Jimmie Durham, Cao Fei, Regina Galindo, Carlos Garaicoa, Thomas Hirschhorn, Jenny Holzer, Barbara Kruger, Daniel Joseph Martinez, Carlos Motta, Shirin Neshat, Julian Rosefeldt, and Eve Sussman and many more. The CIFO building itself, in the gritty warehouse district and designed by local architect Rene Gonzalez, is also impressive, as it breaks away from the cool neutrality of many exhibition spaces and presents us with a hot tropical jungle facade and a large garden patio for social gatherings in the middle of an otherwise nondescript urban environment. The show will be on view through March 1, 2009. If you are going to be in Miami this winter, this exhibition is a must see.
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Miami Vices

Designer and AN friend Ken Saylor, of saylor+sirola, reports from Art|Basel|Miami Beach: For the seventh year in a row, the international art world descended upon Miami Beach to instantly transform the city into a galaxy of cultural production, salesmanship, and hopefully, with this year's delicate economy, elite consumption. If you add cars, champagne, mojitos, and cigars, provided by the current corporate sponsors, one's experience of Art|Basel|Miami Beach was a decadently over-the-top trip to the beach. With 24 auxiliary fairs attaching themselves to the main event, it is impossible to see everything, although everyone runs around the city in frantic abandon—entourages in tow—to openings, parties, parties, and, yes, more parties. Despite the mood of abandon, many New York City gallery owners and directors were either somber or pragmatic in their assessment of the current art market, stating that they were either prepared for the recent economic crisis and had downsized their presentations and sales expectations, or chose to show work that was sure to sell. As one prominent dealer put it, "The conversation is finally about art again, not about money." If one was blind to the current state of world affairs and entered the world of excess, however, Miami was awesome!   Art Positions, an exhibition by young galleries that presented their wares in shipping containers converted to public art spaces, was one of the highlights of the Miami trip. Twenty containers surround a central plaza where Art|Basel|Miami Beach and WPS1.org Art Radio created an immersive futuristic environment, featuring an architectural installation by Federico Díaz and E-Area. Surround-sound audio, video projections, mood lighting, food, drink, and live radio broadcasts provided the ultimate art world beach lounge, a welcome spot to chill out after the visual intensity and economic jitters of the fair. The escapist theme was, of course, intentional. According to the press release, "The themes celebrated in this environment are a retro-futuristic vision first explored by artists, architects, filmmakers, designers, and musicians of the '50s and '60s. Some of their organic shapes, space-age materials, hallucinogenic visions, dreamscapes and soundscapes, and early computer-assisted design have been integrated into the project."   As for the design itself: "A deformed topography of polyethylene layers cut by CNC robotic technology blankets the courtyard of Art Positions. The lounge, cafe, and Art Radio broadcast booth were transformed by undulating waves, extrusions, and futuristic furniture all awash in a bed of soothing psychedelic sound, light, and video." Just lovely.   For a different sort of surreality, located within the Miami Beach Botanical Gardens, Cartier presented "Diamonds, Gold and Dreams," an immersive audio-visual environment conceived by filmmaker and visual artist David Lynch. The interior of the dome was designed as an ornate and gilded event space, complete with Cartier jewel cases around the perimeter where you could try on jewelery. The domed ceiling was used as a giant planetarium-esque projection surface using state of the art projection technology.   The seven-minute show begins with an impressive Pantheon dome structure of floating jewels carefully arranged around a small oculus. Then the Lynch magic begins, as the ceiling begins to undulate and graphically transform into a variety of shapes using the clusters of jewels. Finally, the jewels come crashing down on the spectators below. Most of the VIP visitors in the space didn't seem to realize the show's obvious irony: the sky was falling!