I have FOMO when almost any major event happens — hell, I’d even get a pang of “Why can’t I be there?” for Electric Daisy Carnival were I to see a few Instagram posts from the event. Art Basel gives me particular FOMO. It happens in sunny, sweaty Miami right when winter is settling upon New York, and it just looks like so much FUN.
The practical purposes of the fair (buying and selling, IDK, art?) seem sort of beside the point when you hear that freakin’ Björk is DJing a set. Unfortunately, I’m not at Basel this year (or any year before; I’ve never been), but if I were, I would most certainly be going to these events and exhibits.
1. Carsten Höller, “The Prada Double Club Miami” — If you’re anything like me, you’re asking “Who is Carsten Höller?” He is a few things: 1) a Belgian-German artist 2) a maker of giant tubular slides and other fun things like toys, drugs and sensory deprivation tanks. 3) a longtime Prada collaborator. The conceptual artist is turning a 1920s film studio into an invitation-only nightclub for three nights.
Presented by Milan’s Fondazione Prada, guests will be able to move between the club — a space decorated with stark colors — to a tropical outdoor garden. Indoors will feature club music, while the garden will highlight musicians from South Florida and Caribbean, creating a “schizophrenic” journey.
2. NADA Miami — NADA is a reliable fave at Basel, but that doesn’t mean it’s not still one of the best parts of the fair. It was just announced that Superchunk, the North Carolina duo that’s a ‘90s cult-favorite, will play an acoustic set on Thursday at the Miami Beach Convention Center.
3. An all-woman art fair. has its first show — An all-woman art fair, Fair., is having its first exhibition in Miami this year, and if that isn’t enough to entice you, consider that it is also free admission and has nothing for sale. Fair. aims to challenge the conventional commercial model and, according to its press release, “address gender inequality in the art world and beyond, highlight activism in contemporary creative practices and inspire and empower women.” Here, here.
4.Björk DJ Set and Wu-Tang Clan Performance at III Points — Can you even imagine being at a Björk DJ set? That’s worth the plane ticket right there. Florida music festival III Points is rounding out their Art Basel Concert Series with Björk DJing a set at Mana Wynwood with Oneohtrix Point Never opening for her. On December 10, most of the members of Wu-Tang Clan will perform with a possible meet-and-greet, as well.
5. Art Basel’s #NSFW Neon Vagina — An orgasming 12-foot vagina is easily one of the best parts of this year’s Basel, and I don’t even have to be there to know that. This is a piece you’ll likely see all over your Instagram feed, as it has two very popular things right now: 1) neon 2) vaginas. Created by artist Suzy Kellems Dominik, the sculpture portrays a vulva and fireworks, and is titled “I Can Feel.”
“I want for all women, all people, the freedom, the shamelessness to own their intellect, emotions and physical being completely. To choose to THRIVE, not just be resilient or to survive, is the highest order of being human,” Kellems Dominik says of the sculpture.