Art Basel Miami in Review

Instagram Highlights

Cover Image - VikMuniz, "Shapes and Levels (Telha). Handmade," 2018, mixed media and photography via Galeria Elba Benitez (booth D17) | Galleries 2018. Header Image - Brian Calvin, "Double Duo," 2018, acrylic and pastel on panel via Corbett Vs Dempsey (booth C24) | Galleries 2018.

BY: Zach Wampler

The months of November and December are usually when retailers are at their most flush and flashy, and the art world is no different. Set between Thanksgiving and Christmas, Art Basel Miami is not unlike a Black Friday sale. With reportedly very strong sales this year, Basel Miami is a like a sun-soaked shopping mall for rich and glamorous collectors.

With shaky politics at home and abroad (i.e.- the sentencing of Michael Cohen, the Yellow Vest protests in France, etcetera), Art Basel’s Miami edition felt almost like a party scene directed by Fellini. There were gallerists, Instagram influencers, museum-level artwork, rappers, models, and the rest of the art world’s eccentric cast of characters. However, even if one feels odd about the art fair in our current social climate, there still was many beautiful and impressive pieces on display. Works by a range of artists like Vik Muniz, Roger Brown, and Sarah Lucas were shown. There were of course the big players in attendance, too, like Pablo Picasso, Louise Bourgeois, and Andy Warhol. One of the most beautiful paintings scattered amongst the dozens of booths was the infamously expensive Untitled (Yellow, Orange, Yellow, Light Orange) by Mark Rothko from 1955. It was listed at $50 million, and is considered the priciest item to ever be shown at an art fair. It has yet to be confirmed whether it has sold or not, but either way, it was lovely that the public could catch a glimpse of Rothko’s masterpiece before it vanishes into the home of a collector.

Since Basel Miami wrapped up only a few days ago, we decided to put together some of our favorite works from the fair. Below we’ve included our top ten works from the Art Basel’s Instagram profile if you weren’t able to score that VIP ticket.


Painting by Alfredo Volpi
Alfredo Volpi, “Untitled,” 1960, tempera on canvas via DAN Galeria (booth C13) | Galleries/Kabinett 2018.


Art by Regina Vater
A 1968 work from Regina Vater’s “Tropicália” series via Galeria Jaqueline Martins (booth S1) | Survey 2018.


Sculpture by Tatsuo Miyajima
Tatsuo Miyajima, “Time Bagworm – no.5,” 2017, LED, IC, electric wire, steel, stainless steel wire, cable, tie, and switching supply via SCAI The Bathhouse (booth E14) | Galleries 2018.


Artwork by Mark Handforth, Tunga, and Arturo Herrera
Sculptures by Mark Handforth (left) and Tunga (right) and a painting by Arturo Herrera via Galleria Franco Noero (booth D16) | Galleries 2018.


Painting by Peter Halley
Peter Halley, “Untitled,” 2018, acrylic, fluorescent acrylic, and Roll-A-Tex on canvas via Stuart Shave Modern Art (booth F14) | Galleries 2018.


Painting by Raffi Kalenderian
Raffi Kalenderian, “Jacque,” 2018, oil on canvas via Galerie Peter Kilchmann (booth C21) | Galleries 2018.


Art by Jim Lambie, Sarah Lucas, Martine Syms
Works by Jim Lambie (left), Sarah Lucas (center), and Martine Syms (back) via Sadie Coles (booth J7) | Galleries 2018.


Art by Roger Brown
Roger Brown, “Untitled (Arrangement with Cross),” 1993–1997 via Kavi Gupta (booth A17) | Galleries 2018.


Art by Vik Muniz
VikMuniz, “Shapes and Levels (Telha). Handmade,” 2018, mixed media and photography via Galeria Elba Benitez (booth D17) | Galleries 2018.


Painting by Brian Calvin
Brian Calvin, “Double Duo,” 2018, acrylic and pastel on panel via Corbett Vs Dempsey (booth C24) | Galleries 2018.