Sunday, December 6, 2009

Another View of Miami Basel

Chicago artist Tony Fitzpatrick recently logged this pithy missive on why he doesn't do Miami Basel anymore. While we regard it as a great resource, we also regard this as a great contrarian personal commentary, a bit of bracing criticism from within the belly of the beast that is American art:

It is that time of year again.  Miami has allowed the circus of mental defectives that comprise the art world to pitch its tent on South-Beach.  Every mouth-breathing, social misfit in the country has strapped on the fake tits and spray-on tans and found the most outre-retard outfits to promenade down Collins Avenue and engage in the casual brutality of the art market.

Boo-yah.

I stopped going to these things a couple of years ago.  They are not much about art.  They are more about skin and money and the ambitions of a culture of squishy people who fancy themselves as “taste-makers.”  The parade of jerk-offs checking their Blackberries in full view of a gorgeous ocean makes one despair of the species.  The hookers, male and female, will make a killing, a gallerina or two will get shit-faced on free vodka and go skinny dipping in the pool at the Delano.  Art stars will be made and unmade as the dealers lie about how well sales are going in order to keep the one-ball juggling act known as the economy up in the air.

The art-world worker bees will man booths and realize hour after mundane hour that, in this end of the pool, this is all there is.  Success at an art-fair is at best a Pyrrhic victory.  The swells like you, and this doesn’t mean you’ve achieved anything like art.  In fact, it often means the opposite.  Not that there is no profit in being “fashionable”; there is a whole dearth of talent slaying cash right now.  Celebrity -types will wander the aisles with their dealers in tow, verbally fondling each other’s sacks and air-kissing up a storm.  It will be a daisy-chain amounting to nothing lasting.  A well-lit nowhere. Have a daiquiri for me and tip the fucking waiters, you cheap pricks. ~Tony Fitzpatrick, December 3, 2009
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