Passing the bend into a new year, we careen into a high season of mild weather and more art fairs to round out the culture calendar.
First up is Palm Beach Modern + Contemporary International Art Fair (Jan. 12-15), followed by Art Wynwood (Feb. 16-20) and jumbled up with the Palm Beach Jewelry Art and Antique show (Feb. 15 - 21). All this arty-ness is capped off with an iconic street jamboree, the annual Coconut Grove Arts Festival (Feb. 18-20).
Palm Beach M + C announced earlier in 2016 that West Palm Beach recently agreed to be the official host city for the next three years, granting Nick Korniloff, Mike Tansey and Brian Tyler of the Art Miami group the city’s tent site for it’s inaugural soiree in Palm Beach. Sixty countries and close to 1,000 artists will participate, displaying (and I quote) “blue chip artists, mid-career cutting-edge artists and secondary market works by top name artists from the Modern, Classical Modern, Post-War and Pop eras.”
There must be something in there for you to covet desperately. Give it a whirl. There is life beyond the Miami-Dade line. I regularly trot up to the always wonderful PB Norton Museum of Art once a year for a satisfying cultural day with northern friends. The Norton is being greatly expanded at the moment to become a 6.3-acre campus creating a museum in a 9,000-square foot sculpture garden, augmented by a 12,000-square foot exhibition space, large auditorium with all the latest “fixin’s”, a dining pavillion/terrace and space for artist in residence programs.
West Palm Beach City’s Tent Site is located at 825 S. Dixie Highway and Okeechobee Boulevard, West Palm Beach 33401.
Exclusive VIP Preview benefitting The Palm Beach Zoo and Conservation Society
Thursday, Jan. 12, 5 to 9 p.m.:
- Friday, Jan. 13, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Saturday, Jan. 14, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Sunday, Jan. 15, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Satellite venue: Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens presents works of Sophie Ryder Artist Talk & Book Signing in the Gardens on Saturday, Jan. 14 at 11 a.m. Call for reservations, 832-5328 2051 South Flagler Drive, West Palm Beach 33401
Palm Beach Jewelry Art and Antique Show (Feb. 15 - 21).
If baubles are your business, this show will push all your buttons. The lecture series can help sort out some of the information and send you on your way armed with knowledge, if not a personal treat or two that you may have convinced yourself you, by all means deserve.
Palm Beach County Convention Center, 650 Okeechobee Boulevard, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Opening Night Preview Party: Wednesday, Feb. 15
General Admission Show Dates
- Feb. 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Feb. 21, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Art Wynwood Pavilion popped up in the Art Miami tent si years ago with the intent of filling a void for more of Miami to show it’s expanding talents with a like-minded international scene. The Art Miami team was sensitive to the needs and created an exhibition in a collective venue apart from the Art Basel’s December world showcase. Seventy international galleries are touted as “unique and experimental exhibitions presenting the highest level of art from the 20th and 21st centuries.” Being Wynwood, it follows that this fair should bring to the fore muralists and other underground artists in the street art movement, underlining the area’s identity. Art Wynwood is sponsored by Christie’s International Real Estate, opening with the Thursday evening Private VIP Preview (6 to 10 p.m.), which benefits the Miami City Ballet.
Specials to watch out for:
- The Art Wynwood Tony Goldman Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award this year is honoring American contemporary street artist Shepard Fairey. His realm extends to graphic design, activist, illustrator, entrepreneur and founder of OBEY Clothing.
- A panel discussion hosted by Cernuda Arte (along with Coral Gables Museum) will highlight the CG concurrent museum exhibit, "Cuban Art in the 20th Century." Art Wynwood will stay on message with the theme of a special Cuban art exhibit focussing on “20th and 21st century art from the island nation.” “JW Marriot Marquis Miami and Hotel Beaux Arts Miami, will host a special installation in their lobby highlighting works from participating Art Wynwood galleries from around the world.” quoth the fair PR informants.
- Feb. 17, 18, 19, 11 a.m to 7 p.m.
- Feb. 20, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- February 18, 19, 20, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Keep abreast of the festivities to come through the website as things are announced. For further information or tickets: visit www.artwynwood.com. Art Wynwood Pavilion, Feb. 16-20, 3001 NE 1st Ave. Midtown Miami
VIP Preview, Feb. 16
The juried Coconut Grove Arts Festival has been gracing the streets of the Grove for 54 years. Since 1963, they have awarded more than $100,000 in scholarships to students who attend fine arts programs. There is always an extra good reason to attend these events besides our personal pleasure. It all began when the late Charlie Cinnamon, the public relations director for Coconut Grove Playhouse, organized a “Left Bank” art show heralding the opening of Irma La Douce at the theater.
The art show obviously was a hit on its own merit and the Coconut Grove Association was formed to put on the art event annually. No longer an insulated show, artists from all over the planet are here for your visual pleasure. 360 entrants will be on hand this year, is the claim (you can count if you’re a stickler for detail. I dare you). Culinary and performing arts will not be left out of the roster we are happy to report. Expand your palate at the Global Food Village before settling in for a spot of music, dance or theater in the (hopefully) balmy sunshiny environment.
If the children in tow do not cotton to a sedate respite, haul them over to the recreational area for some bungee trampolines, bouncy houses, tower slides, obstacle courses, etc until they beg to sit and take in a more leisurely activity with the more mature patrons of your group. Buy this year’s poster, T-shirt or visor to add to that collection of sartorial must- have’s lounging in your closets and drawers. Coconut Grove Art Festival, On the streets of McFarlane Road, South Bayshore Drive and Pan American Drive.
FUN FACTS ABOUT ART FAIRS
Here’s a doozy I found in the ArtNet site that started out, I’m sure, as a brilliant speck of creativity:
The Armory Art Show (NYC) 2013 “decided to unite Piers 92 and 94 with a code-challenged platform made from construction scaffolding. Dubbed ‘the staircase of doom’ by art critic Paddy Johnson, the rickety stairs sported ‘public safety’ signs that read ‘Low Clearance’ and ‘Only 10 People At a Time.’ Located near the southwest corner of Pier 94, the door between both piers is still visible (unless the fair has wisely decided to board it up this year). As one staff member who worked on the project observed: ‘If you open it, you’ll fall straight to your death.’”
You might find this factoid a tad more fun: The very first art fair was Art Cologne in 1967 begun by two Cologne based gallerists Hein Stünke and Rudolf Zwirner. Classic modern art, post-war art and contemporary art was on offer. Kunstmarkt Köln ’67, as it was called, ultimately began a new direction in the international art market. It vastly exceeded expectation.
Okay, one more helpful piece of art fair life since you begged. There is a book that might be of interest delineating the history of the outdoor art fairs in America titled “From Clotheslines to Canopies” by painter Kathleen Eaton.
“I think the art fair is very much a form of urbanism. I think something really happens to the cities when such a fair happens. The city becomes an exhibition; it's amazing.” Hans-Ulrich Obrist.