Art Basel Miami Beach

I was at Art Basel Miami Beach and the satellite art fairs, held in Miami, Florida from December 1-4, 2011. This is the first post. It includes information on the various fairs. More posts (including an interview) with more details will follow.

I’ve included links so you can get a feel for this year’s arts extravaganza.

See the video produced by Vernissage TV – it’s an opening day walk through Art Basel Miami Beach.

The main fair – ABMB is located at the Miami Beach Convention Center. There are satellite fairs located nearby, or across town in the Wynwood District in Midtown Miami. All the fairs are large. ABMB grew to 260 participating galleries this year – up 1/3.

Each link below includes images and information that will help you plan you trip next year. You’ll see there is something for everyone and you will never have enough time to do it all!

South Beach at night


This was my 3rd visit to Miami, FL to see the art. I packed my sneakers so I wouldn’t have blisters like last year. I arrived early afternoon on Thursday, December 1st, the day the Fair opened, and planned to stay through Sunday, December 5th, the day the Fair closed.

Every year I add another day and plan to see more. I never get to see everything I want and always feel a little disappointed.

I was on my own last year, and spent one whole day at Art Miami with a terrific couple who collect art.  It was fun to be with them and focus on seeing art they liked. It was their first trip to ABMB. This year I attended with an artist friend – Mary Hunter – and it made a huge difference in so many ways. See her website…

We talked art from morning to night, and organized our days to see the art fairs we wanted to visit together. Next year I plan to add 2 more days and arrive before the Fair is officially open. I hope Mary will join me again.

Bjerrggard Gallery, Copenhagen at ABMB


December 1, 2011: Mary arrived from Austin, TX. I arrived from New York. We synchronized our arrival times and met at Miami International Airport and took a taxi to our little hotel on Collins Avenue in South Beach, Miami. After check-in, we set off to see the nearby art fairs on Collins Avenue.

The image above is by Joanne Mattera. See her recent blogs for extraordinary images from ABMB and the Satellite Fairs. Read “A Peek at Art Miami…” and other posts.


You can’t see everything you want to see at ABMB. There is too much to see and never enough time.

The 2012 ABMB website is up.You can browse and download Apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry and other smartphones. If you decide to attend, make hotel reservations five months in advance.

Mary and I decided to stay in a hotel on Collins Avenue in South Beach and do a lot of walking. You can taxi (and deal with traffic). It’s expensive. You can drive (and deal with parking).  Have you noticed – everything takes time? Even taxis take time (you have to find one and you sit in traffic) because there are so many people visiting the fairs.

I’ve included the 2011 pdf of a map/guide I used. It identifies the fairs and gives street locations, and you see what is nearby.  It includes shuttle bus routes and taxi phone numbers. The maps are available at the fairs, but I’m including it here to help you see locations as you plan your visit.

Here’s a link to It lists information about the 2011 fairs with hours, admission fees, etc.

Barbara Kruger (Mary Boone Gallery) at ABMB

ABMB opens at noon daily and requires a full day to do it justice. Art Miami (located across the causeway in Midtown Miami) is also big, but is right near Scope Miami and Art Asia, and not too far from other fairs you probably want to see – including the Rubell Family Collection.

Our hotel on Collins Avenue was a short walk to Miami Beach and one morning Mary and I actually walked on the beach before heading for breakfast. It was a beautiful experience. Mary Hunter took the beach photo seen below.

Beautiful Miami Beach

We could walk to the Miami Beach Convention Center a few blocks away. We were a short walk to AQUA Miami (a great show), and INK, at the Suites of Dorchester, sponsored by the International Fine Print Dealers Association. We discovered the ART NOW Fair at the Catalina Hotel, and met artists and gallerists showing works in a more intimate space.

We took a shuttle bus to NADA Miami, (New Art Dealers Association) a little further away on Collins Ave at the Deauville Beach Resort. Check out the galleries that participated this year.

NADA is a robust experience for viewing contemporary art.

I was really disappointed we missed SEVEN, a fair that showcases NY galleries BravinLee, Hales Gallery, Pierogi Gallery, Postmasters, P.P.O.W., Ronald Feldman Fine Arts and the Winkleman Gallery. We missed the PULSE Miami fair also.


The posts that follow will include images and comments by Mary Hunter (it was her first visit to ABMB), and my notes from the fairs we visited. One post includes my interview with Edward Crowell II, founder of Hydrox Projects Gallerie (Miami/London).

I would love to hear from you. Please add your comments below. Tell me if you have been to Art Basel Miami or plan to go next year.

8 thoughts on “ART BASEL MIAMI BEACH 2011

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