Ten (Out of 10,000) Things To Do During ABMB 2012

By | November 27th, 2012 | 12 Comments
Art Basel Chaos

Art Basel 2012 is around the corner. Are you ready for the madness?

Starting early next week, the annual onslaught of events surrounding Art Basel Miami Beach begins (and with it our #beachedbasel photo contest). Inarguably the high point of the Miami social calendar, we can all admit that at least half the fun comes from observing the human zoo that pours into town from ever corner of the globe. At the center of it all, of course, is the massive ABMB fair itself, housed in the cavernous Miami Beach Convention Center. But even that only represents a slice of the action.

That said, you’ll need to accept that there’s simply way too much going on to do it all, and FOMO is just part of the game. And while there will be innumerable glitzy private dinners, champagne receptions, and VVVIP openings, there’s also plenty to see and do that’s accessible, street-level, and fun as hell. Here are our ten Basel picks, presented in roughly chronological order.

‘Snipers’ by AHOLSNIFFSGLUE @ Gregg Shienbaum Gallery

Beloved Miami artist AHOL changes up his usual street canvas for this pop-up installation inside Shienbaum gallery. Recently, AHOL has taken his work beyond straight painting and started to work with manipulated, psychedelic digital images based on photos he snaps of weirdness around town. For this exhibition, he’s collected a whole new library of these photos — mostly taken without permission, a.k.a. sniped — edited them to even greater heights of strangeness, and then made many of them into pillows. Bring quarters, because you can try to win your own through one of those old-school claw machines.

The exhibition also comes accompanied by recently unearthed instrumental music by the late, great local legend Jose El Rey. The opening is this Thursday, November 29, and the show stays up through Basel.

The exhibition opens at 6 p.m. on Thursday, November 29, at Gregg Shienbaum Fine Art (2239 N.W. Second Avenue). Admission is free. Call 305-456-5478, or visit gsfineart.com for more details.

The Heineken Mural Project

An essential ingredient of Wynwood’s current flavor is, of course, the neighborhood’s wall-to-wall street art by locals and international stars alike. (Thank — or blame — the late developer Tony Goldman and the collective Primary Flight for getting that going.) Now, a new set of murals is coming to the area courtesy of Heineken, which sponsored six new pieces by out-of-towners Chor Boogie, Estria, Prime, and Don Rimx, and locals CP1 and Trek6 (pictured above). After they’re finished, the murals will serve as the backdrop for a series of pop-up parties over the next few weeks. Heineken’s also sponsoring the first Deco Bike stations in Wynwood and Midtown, so the curious can easily get around to the various mural sites.

The official media/VIP opening party is on Thursday, November 29, and festivities continue throughout the week of Basel, with the Heineken Beer Garden and bike station opening on Monday, December 3. Visit remezcla.com/heinekenmuralproject for full details.

‘Sugar and Gomorrah’ by Peter Anton @ Art Miami

Artist Peter Anton creates work from a sugar addict’s dream and a diabetic’s nightmare. In past pieces, he’s used jumbo sprinkled donuts, massive boxes of over-sized chocolate truffles, and more to create sculptures that are technically edible, and both alluring and sickening. For a special Art Miami installation, Anton’s going extra over-the-top by fashioning a fully functioning roller coaster out of candy, titled Sugar and Gomorrah, complete with a temptations-of-the-flesh theme. Insert all the obvious Miami jokes here!

The exhibition opens on Tuesday, December 4, at Art Miami (3101 N.E. First Avenue). Visit art-miami.com for full details.

‘Drift’ by Daniel Arsham @ Design Miami

The latest work by this Miami native is a biggie: the entrance pavilion to this year’s Design Miami fair. Now based in New York, where he runs the firm Snarkitecture, Arsham is calling the piece “Drift” and constructing it out of giant inflatable tubes. Design Miami is always worth the price of admission, but you can get a free glimpse of Arsham’s structure just by walking by the outside.

Design Miami runs from Tuesday, December 4, through Sunday, December 9. It is located nearby the Miami Beach Convention Center, at Meridian Avenue and 19th Street. Visit designmiami.com for full details.

Pop-Up Piano

For this project, local go-getters the Black Key Group got eight different artists to transform eight Steinway & Sons pianos, which will be scattered throughout Wynwood, Midtown, Downtown, and the Design District during Art Basel weekend. The musically inclined can play the pianos when they come across them, and each piano will also anchor a series of free shows by various local acts, including Suenalo, Brendan O’Hara, and Raffa and Rainer. In the end, each piano will go to a charity or nonprofit music program.

The pianos will be on display from Wednesday, December 5, through Sunday, December 9. Visit popuppianomia.com for full show details and piano locations.

Miami’s Independent Thinkers Art Basel Satellite Fair

With so many out-of-towners touching down in Miami to hawk their artistic wares during the week of madness, only a small fraction of exhibits bother to feature local talent. Doing its part to address that issue for the fourth year in a row, Miami’s Independent Thinkers are presenting a satellite fair featuring only the works of artists hailing from South Florida, including Art of Shade, Breanna Elise Murphy, Gerry Stecca, Maitejosune Urrechaga, and Rod Deal.

Thursday, December 6 through Sunday, December 9 at the Armory Studios, 527 NW 23rd St., Miami. Visit miamithinkers.com and facebook.com/MiamisIndependentThinkers

‘KURT’ featuring Thurston Moore @ the Gusman Center

As ’90s nostalgia hits a fever pitch and a younger generation discovers Nirvana, it makes sense to commemorate Kurt Cobain (again). This multidisciplinary show at the beautiful Gusman Center should bring out the obsessives for a night of work in different genres, all centered around, yes, Kurt. The program features a dance work choreographed by Ryan Heffington, a short film by Adarsha Benjamin, and a musical performance by none other than Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore (pictured above in a Wikimedia Commons photo by Seth Tisue). Thurston in Miami? Go ahead and freak out!

The event starts at 8 p.m. on Thursday, December 6, at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts (174 E. Flagler Street). Tickets cost between $25 and $50. Call 305-372-0925 or visit gusmancenter.org for full details.

Fountain Art Fair

Fountain Art Fair 2010

If you’re a fairly Regular Person, or, more optimistically, a Really Sharp Collector of Up-and-Coming Artists, Fountain is your fair. This DIY-feeling, always super-fun, sometimes chaotic (see above photo and lead photo from its 2010 edition) fair features staunchly independent galleries and a good deal of art that’s actually affordable. This year, Fountain will celebrate its biggest Miami fair to date with two separate dance parties. Friday night’s official opening reception features a DJ set by JPatt, half of the Knocks, and Saturday night features a Miami edition of one of Brooklyn’s best dance parties, Tiki Disco. (Sadly, it doesn’t come with the pizza from Roberta’s like the real thing.)

Fountain Art Fair runs from Friday, December 6, through Sunday, December 9, at 2505 North Miami Avenue. Visit fountainartfair.com for full details.

Daniel Johnston performance and exhibition @ Grand Central

Kurt wearing Johnston

Legendary tortured-genius Daniel Johnston is beloved by his rabid following of fans for both his visual art and music. The former got its first big commercial boost when the aforementioned Kurt Cobain sported a T-shirt of one of Johnston’s most famous images, a cartoonish frogish creature from the cover of Johnston’s 1983 album, Hi, How Are You. Johnston’s musical output, meanwhile, spans some 30 years and more than 20 full-length albums ranging from lo-fi sketches to fully realized folk masterpieces. Since Johnston lives with both bipolar and schizophrenia (a challenge documented in the 2006 documentary The Devil and Daniel Johnston), his live performances are rare, making his debut Miami performance at downtown club Grand Central a must-see. Ditto for the exhibition of Johnston’s work that will accompany the show.

The start time for this 21+ show is 9 p.m. on Friday, December 7, at Grand Central (697 North Miami Avenue). Tickets cost $20 in advance. Call 305-377-2277 or visit grandcentralmiami.com for full details.

Basel Castle

This Basel weekend capper returns again, continuing its trajectory of steady expansion. Again, the Overthrow crew will open the gates of its headquarters at the Castle, on the very southeastern border of Wynwood for an all-night, music-art-and-booze bash. This time around, though, it’s not just the castle they’re overthrowing, but the surrounding city blocks as well. This year’s fete features live art by Buff Monster, Anthony Lister, L’Amour Supreme, and Greg Mike, as well as a pop-up gallery curated by TOTT Global. Then, of course, there’s the music, spanning two stages and including sets by live acts Jacuzzi Boys, Purity Ring (pictured above in a photo by Landon Speers), Teengirl Fantasy, and Twin Shadow, and DJ sets by Brenmar, Tamara Sky, and others. This event will fill to capacity, so show up early.

This event kicks of 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 8, at the Castle (41 N.W. 20th Street). Admission is free with RSVP from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Priority tickets are currently sold out. 18+ with ID. For full details, visit baselcastle.com.


Did we miss something essential? Feel free to add suggestions in the comments section below. Also, make sure to check out the ABMB 2012 Music Guide and the Beached Basel Photo Contest to learn how you can win one of several awesome prizes — including a $499 Republic Bike courtesy of Grolsch — just by sharing Basel photos through Instagram.

Follow Beached Miami on Twitter (@beachedmiami) and Facebook and Instagram and email and RSS.

12 Comments on “Ten (Out of 10,000) Things To Do During ABMB 2012”

  1. 1 YoMiami said at 8:13 am on November 27th, 2012:

    Suggestion: For locals looking to check out an exhibit before they have to decide between 10,000 things, the mIconic exhibition at Yo Space highlighting all the iconic images that represent our city opens the Sunday before Basel weekend.

  2. 2 Arielle Castillo said at 9:31 am on November 27th, 2012:

    @YoSpace, thank you for sharing this!

  3. 3 Jordan Melnick said at 10:50 am on November 27th, 2012:

    Here’s another interesting option: “Join emerging artists Rina Dweck for her Miami Art Week debut at a Breakwater Hotel pop up gallery (940 Ocean Drive) and outdoor exhibition space at Espanola Way (1444 Drexel) Dec. 3-11. The Brooklyn based artist presents Project Face, a yearlong social media exercise in which she diligently shot 365 self-portraits for her Facebook page. Her body of photographs ranges from the macabre to the testimonial, reflecting her fascination with pop culture, voyeurism, media, and classical portraiture.” More info at rinadweck.com

  4. 4 Jordan Melnick said at 3:15 pm on November 27th, 2012:

    Here’s another head-turner via Art Fag City: “Betty Tompkins started making fuck paintings in the late 60s, from her first husband’s porn collection, partly in response to what she saw as a complete lack of engagement in the work on the Upper East Side … Since, she’s been making work which few galleries have been bold enough to display. She’s painted masturbation, vaginas with cows grazing, and dicks larger than the human head. She’s painted two cocks at the same time. She’s painted dicks in the butt. She’s painted a vagina like a soft, glowing peach. She’s done it all. [Adam] Lindemann will present her works on paper from 1969-2010. The show is called ‘FUCK.'” The location of the show is The M Building (194 N.W. 30th Street). Learn more HERE.

  5. 5 JennyLee said at 8:35 pm on November 27th, 2012:

    So much to do… so little time! Looking forward to all of the above and then some.

  6. 6 Big Time Jones said at 8:34 am on November 28th, 2012:


  7. 7 Jordan Melnick said at 2:32 pm on November 28th, 2012:

    And another, this one via Hyperallergic: “Does Miami Beach need another art fair? We’re not sure, but we have to admit, this one sounds good: The Untitled art fair is launching its inaugural edition down in Miami this winter (December 5–9), and it will be curated. Fifty international galleries and nonprofits will choose their artists and artworks in conversation with curator Omar Lopez-Chahoud, who organized the sprawling, nine-gallery, Lower East Side exhibition Lush Life in 2010. The ultimate goal of Untitled art fair, according to the press release, is “a cogent and cohesive presentation that places emphasis on diversity and conceptual rigor.” That does sound like a nice change from your average shopping mall art fair.

    “Untitled, which will take place in a commissioned pavilion designed by architecture firm K/R, released a partial list of some of the participating galleries this week. Standout names include New York’s Art in General and Dodge Gallery, which will be showing Jason Middlebrook; Milan’s Federico Luger, showing Franklin Evans; and LA’s Steve Turner, showing Parker Ito. We know everyone already has too much to see and do in Miami Beach, but this new fair might be worth a look.”

  8. 8 Dave Sheldon said at 8:00 am on December 1st, 2012:

    Internationally-renowned street artist duo Herakut have brought their Giant Storybook Project to Miami for Art Basel week. The Giant Storybook Project chronicles the creation of a (yet-unnamed) new children’s book that Herakut is creating. Launched in September 2012 and continuing through 2013, the project follows the artists as they introduce the story’s characters on murals that they are painting around the world.

    In Miami, they are painting the 8th page/mural on a giant building at 1334 N. Miami Avenue, just south of 14th Street and across from the PULSE Art Fair. We welcome people to come by any day from Saturday to Tuesday to watch the mural progress and meet the artists.

    We also wanted people to know that they’ll be at the mural on Tuesday night during the PULSE MIAMI VIP Private Preview Party (across the street) and welcome people to come by to see the final product and meet them. It should be great! We can’t wait to share the final product with everyone.

    For more information about the Giant Storybook Project, visit Facebook
    or Tumblr.

  9. 9 Jordan Melnick said at 3:03 pm on December 3rd, 2012:

    Another goodie from one of my favorite local artists:

    “RAW POWER doodles on walls by Brian Butler
    100 Northeast 38th Street #2 Miami, FL 33137

    Opening reception is Thursday Dec 6th from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm

    Mural launch presented along with affordable prints and drawings by Brian Butler

    Music by Benton (Eclectic Electric) and Stravinsky (Team Rojas)
    Liquor from 42 Below. Food provided by Shokudo.


    Event page: HERE

  10. 10 Caridad Sola Studio LLC said at 1:00 am on December 4th, 2012:

    Performance Artist Caridad Sola to perform with Grace Exhibition Space at the Fountain Art Fair VIP/ Press Preview on Thursday Dec 6th from 1-5PM.

  11. 11 Jordan Melnick said at 10:31 am on December 4th, 2012:

    And another: “Moving the Still is the first large-scale, open call festival for original GIF art. This inaugural competition will showcase animated GIFS as a new genre of digital art. The Festival is curated by Paddle8, a premier online destination for art collectors, and hosted here on Tumblr, the world’s leading social blogging platform. Submissions are open and will be published on a rolling bases from October 17th through November 7th, culminating in a live exhibition during Miami Art Week 2012.” Learn more HERE and HERE.

  12. 12 Jordan Melnick said at 10:47 am on December 7th, 2012:

    Another another another: ” Flood the Art Market: Artists Helping Artists Affected by Hurricane Sandy will mount an exhibition of donated works during Art Basel Miami Beach at The Art Place Wynwood from December 6 to 9 with a Flood party on Saturday, December 8 from 6 to 10pm. Artists include Cey Adams, Maggie Bard, Beastie Boys, Alexander Cavaluzzo, Martha Cooper, Janette Beckman, Danny Clinch, Cycle, Anthony Gaicolea, Veronica Ibarra, Chelsea Rae Klein, Paul Madonna, Hally McGehean, Bill McMullen, Mr. Kiji, Duke Riley, Clams Rockefeller, Ellen Schinderman, Jamel Shabazz, Tim Sullivan, Tommy Turner and Ian Wright.

    “All proceeds will go to the NYFA Emergency Relief Fund, a major relief effort to assist artists in the aftermath of the hurricane with leading support by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Arts, The Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, and the Lambent Foundation (a project of the Tides Center).”

    Learn more on FTAM’s Facebook page and in this Hyperallergic article.

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