The most visually stimulating time of the year is here, folks! While we may sum up all of our artful meanderings to “Art Basel,” that is but one of the many fairs that pops up during the week. Sure, it may have been the art fair to put Miami on the map, but in the 23 years since Art Basel appeared on our sandy shores, it’s inspired an unravelling of satellite art fairs throughout town to satisfy all aesthetic inclinations. (Fun fact: Art Miami came first.)
Art Basel – A Glance into the Artistic Extravaganza
Let’s be clear on something: the art fairs are the best part. Sure, there are amazing once-in-a-lifetime events and parties throughout the week, and we’d definitely encourage you to go off the beaten path to marvel at the best public art pop-ups and installations. But if you truly want to get into the spirit of the week, up your arts and culture savvy, and leave feeling inspired, then make it a point to go to at least one fair between December 6th and December 10th.
Satellite Art Fairs You Can’t Miss
SCOPE Miami Beach Definitely one of the more popular fairs with the public, SCOPE Miami returns this year with a slate of experiential and experimental contemporary works from over 130 exhibitors. In addition to its gallerists and featured artists, the fair’s big draw is The New Contemporary, a multidisciplinary multi-day program with large scale installations, music performances, panel discussions and even wellness activities in the morning, like yoga and guided meditations. By night, the space transforms into a full nightclub with rotating DJs—because, hey, it’s South Beach. On the beach at Ocean Drive and 8th St, Miami Beach. Dec 5 – 10; $60.
The best fair for interior design junkies is back. Now in its 19th year, Design Miami returns to the Art Basel-adjacent Pride Park for its 2023 program. This year’s theme “Where We Stand,” focuses on human connection and community, using incredibly beautiful objects as storytelling catalysts. It is among the smallest fairs to stroll; Depending on how much time you spend listening to the world’s most influential designers of the moment speak, or ogling at the object and furniture pieces that the 40 best design studios in the world have created, you could probably comb every inch of the fair and its luxury brand activations in about an hour. But stroll slowly; good design deserves time. Convention Center Drive and 19th St, Miami Beach. Dec 6–Dec 10; $35–$225.
Art Miami Miami’s OG art fair—and the second most attended in the world—returns to its illustrious bayfront location for a 33rd edition featuring a huge lineup of investment quality paintings, drawings, design, sculpture, NFTs, video art, photography and prints. We’re talking over 900 artists from 170 different galleries showcasing contemporary and modern works. It’s a high traffic fair that’s directly connected to Context Miami, so give yourself a good amount of time to make your way through. One Herald Plaza, NE 14th St. Dec 05–Dec 10; $40–$285.
CONTEXT Art Miami If Art Basel is for the upper crust art aficionados, CONTEXT (and its parent fair Art Miami) is for the everyday appreciators. CONTEXT places emerging and mid-career artists front and center with 76 innovative galleries from more than 21 countries as well as 10 installations and outdoor sculptures. If you’re avidly avoiding the beach (or have already tackled it), you could make a day out of exploring Art Miami, Context and Scope which are all located in the Arts and Entertainment District. One Herald Plaza at 14th St. Dec 05–Dec 10; $40–$275.
Miami’s Best Private Art Galleries
Sure, all eyes are on Miami each December, when one of the biggest art fairs in the world, Art Basel, descends on our city. But you can see great art in Miami throughout the year by visiting the city’s abundant art galleries (and strolling the Miami Art Deco district, too). From Wynwood to Allapattah, these are the edgiest enclaves and most creative corners to scope out works by local and international artists alike. You don’t have to be an expert to enjoy them, either. These Miami art galleries are for everyone, from amateurs to connoisseurs to collectors and everything in between.
The Rubell Family Collection
The Rubell Family Collection is best known as one of the biggest private contemporary art collections in the country. And yes, it’s the same Rubell as the Studio 54 days. After wowing art gazers at its Wynwood digs for 23 years, the Rubell Family Collection opened its doors in Miami’s Allapattah District in 2019. Prepare to see art that will spark multiple reactions.
Fred Snitzer Gallery
If you think Miami’s art scene is a new-ish thing, consider the Fred Snitzer Gallery, which has actually been around since the ’70s. And its owner sits on the Art Basel Miami Beach selection committee, so you know he has the chops to curate worth a look-see. If it’s contemporary art you are into, expect to see pieces from artists like Hernan Bas, Noah Cribb, and Alice Aycoc.
Here’s an antidote for people who just want to go up and touch the art. The pieces at this digital art gallery are meant to be manipulated with your fingers or activated by jumping up and down. It’s pretty neat, and, before you know it, you’ll have spent an hour waving your arms around like a cheerleader. Immersive art experiences, like Pantone’s MAGENTAVERSE, are all the rage these days. Still, Artechouse delivers quality pieces that don’t feel like their sole purpose is to generate Instagram posts.
Avant Gallery With locations in Brickell City Centre and Aventura Mall, Avant Gallery is a haven for early-to-mid-career contemporary artists. You’ll also find furniture, accessories, and other artful pieces in these galleries. The artists here are some of the most diverse in the city. From their ages to their nationalities to their histories, find their stories through their work.
Insider Pro Tips for Art Basel 2023
With more than 80,000 art collectors, aficionados, and celebrities regularly in attendance – not to mention more than 283 galleries from 38 countries on display – you’ll need a game plan…
1. Get All Tickets in Advance Miami traffic will make arriving at a particular time very difficult. But if you don’t buy a ticket in advance, Art Basel Miami Beach will make you wait at least an hour for the “next available” time slot.
2. Traffic Woes For the most part, traffic is bad on Wednesday and gets worse every day until Sunday. If you take your own car, you’ll have trouble with parking as well. Take Lyft
Where to Stay During Miami Art Week
Now, armed with a guide to the top satellite art fairs, the best private galleries, and insider tips for navigating Art Basel 2023, it’s time to consider where to rest your creative soul after a day immersed in the vibrant world of art.
Accommodations: Finding Your Artful Retreat
Miami offers a plethora of accommodation options, ensuring you can find the perfect haven to rejuvenate for the next day’s artistic exploration. Here are some areas to consider:
- South Beach: If you crave the iconic Miami Beach experience, with its art deco architecture and lively atmosphere, staying in South Beach might be your best bet. Find trendy boutique hotels and beachfront resorts that echo the city’s glamorous vibe.
- Wynwood: Immerse yourself in the heart of Miami’s art scene by staying in Wynwood. This eclectic neighborhood is known for its vibrant street art, galleries, and trendy cafes. Opt for unique boutique hotels that capture the essence of the neighborhood’s artistic spirit.
- Downtown Miami: For those who prefer a more cosmopolitan setting, Downtown Miami offers sleek skyscrapers, cultural attractions, and proximity to the art fairs. Choose from a range of upscale hotels that provide a sophisticated retreat after a day of exploration.
- Coconut Grove: Seeking a more relaxed and bohemian atmosphere? Consider Coconut Grove, known for its lush greenery and waterfront views. Unwind in boutique hotels or waterfront resorts away from the hustle and bustle.
Closing Thoughts: A Week of Artful Inspiration
As the sun sets over Miami during Art Week, leaving behind a day filled with creativity, innovation, and inspiration, take a moment to reflect on the extraordinary journey you’ve experienced. Miami Art Week is not just an event; it’s a celebration of diverse artistic expressions, a convergence of talent from around the globe.
Whether you find yourself captivated by the avant-garde installations at Design Miami/, immersed in the contemporary wonders of SCOPE Miami Beach, or exploring the renowned Art Miami, each moment contributes to the kaleidoscope of experiences that define this artistic extravaganza.
So, pack your curiosity, don your most comfortable walking shoes, and embark on a journey through the vibrant tapestry of Miami’s art scene. From the grandeur of Art Basel to the intimate charm of private galleries, every stroke of creativity awaits your discovery. Miami Art Week 2023 is your canvas – paint it with unforgettable memories and artistic revelations.
Cheers to a week filled with art, culture, and the boundless possibilities of human expression. Until next year, Miami Art Week – may your colors stay vivid and your creativity boundless!