Miami Design District: Art Basel 2010

Helllllooooo...!  It's Monday, back to the grind folks... how's it goin'?

This year I actually got around to attending Art Basel in Miami's Design District, it's an annual international contemporary art exhibition that is held every year in Basel, Switzerland and Miami, Florida!  The first Art Basel was held in 1970 and the event has been dubbed "the Olympics of the art world" (via Wikipedia) by many...

For the past two years I have either forgotten to go to Art Basel or was too distracted by my December moving tradition!  Ha!  Anyway, this year I really wanted to attend because I was looking forward to meeting Dutch Artist and Designer Mariska Meijers, whose story and artwork I did a blog post on some time ago, check it out here.  Mariska Meijers and I have been communicating for most of the year in hopes of meeting at one of her local events, which almost happened a few months ago at her first Miami show held in Coral Gables at the Design Within Reach showroom (DWR) on Miracle Mile, however my plans fell through because I was sick that week.  This time around I was finally able to meet Mariska and to my surprise, she recognized me the moment I walked into the showroom and greeted me with the European kiss on each cheek, hehe!  I must say, she certainly is as sweet as her artwork!

The showcase of her artwork and product line was organized by her Miami sales representative Eva Uribe Roepers of Interdecorations, who I also had the pleasure of meeting that night...and she is so kind!  The event was held at the Bobby Berk Home Showroom at
53 NE 40th Street in the Design District.    On display were a few of Mariska's fabulous paintings along with her colorful pillow line, which mimics her popular paintings...  Everything was so crisp and vibrant, I must say - her work is extra lovely in person!

I attended the event with my mom and my aunt and we all had a great time.  Towards the end of the event we said goodbye and strolled through the Design District, wandering in and out of different Galleries and Showrooms and observing all the madness...  There were a lot of people, a lot of gorgeous things, a lot of weird/eclectic/avant garde art.. and of course, A LOT of really expensive stuff!  But hey, let's call it inspiration shall we?  =)

With that said... scroll on down for a few images of Mariska Meijers' new products - photos from a shoot at her home studio in Amsterdam, some images from her event at the Bobby Berk Home Showroom for Art Basel 2010 and some of my personal pictures from Art Basel....

For more information on Dutch Artist and Designer Mariska Meijers please check out the following links:

(her blog)

(from left) Mariska Meijers, Eva Uribe Roepers, Carolina (my mom) and me
Mariska Meijers' designer pillows and lamp shade on display
...more pillows and beautiful vases.... again, loving the purple and yellow!
...pillows pillows pillows *sigh*  I love that purple, pink black and orange Ikat like print!
Mariska Meijers and Eva Uribe Roepers of Interdecorations in front of the Bobby Berk Home Showroom.
...pillows and artwork on easel on display in Bobby Berk Home...
....some of Mariska Meijers' colorful paintings on display...

And now, here are my own personal pictures taken at Art Basel.  I got some shots from the street of ongoing events and we visited Poltrona Frau Showroom and Avant Gallery...

This appeared to be a pretty bizarre Christmas theme park composed of lots of ginormous skyscraper hot air balloon Christmas figures... I don't know why there were 10 billion people packed in line to see it... LOL
....PEACE!   An art sculpture on the sidewalk outside of some place in the Design District...
...this image is from Avant Gallery and I tried my best to capture a cool hanging remake of Roy Lichtenstein's pop art woman made from carefully arranged spools of different colored string.  As you can see they all come together to form the image when observed from afar... it funky!
Avant Gallery was full of funky stuff, just take a look....

Yes, this peace sign is made from none other than LEGOS!!!!
...and this guy too!
I loved this photography of this nude woman, very erotic and dramatic!  Unfortunately I forgot to catch the artist's name, oops!....

This was in the pop art room of Avant Gallery and it appears to an attempt at pop art portraits of various celebrities, including Jack Nicholson from the Shining, the dude from that horrible movie A Clockwork Orange, Che Guevara and so on...
...and I save this piece for the last of my Avant Gallery photos because it's of The Beatles, my boys... my favorite!  This reminds me that I need to take a picture of the AWESOME Beatles billboard downtown by iTunes, it's a great black and white photo of all of the Beatles and it's very striking!  There are two downtown, one near I-95 and one right next to the Freedom Tower that I can see perfectly from my balcony... I gotta rememeber!
Here is the final chapter of my experience at Art Basel 2010, at the Poltrona Frau Showroom...
I really liked this area rug (not to mention that spectacular leather ottoman!!!!) made from several Persian carpets and Kelims, unfortunately I could not find anyone knowledgeable on who the artist/designer is!
GORGEOUS ottoman!
I love the way all of these different rug pieces look sewn together to form one unique piece of art!
Funky wavy yellow chair in the Poltrona Frau Showroom
This chair was my favorite piece in ALL of Poltrona Frau!  Isn't it friggin' gorgeous!?  That white leather, that spotted cowhide.... oh my...  (sorry animal rights people, but the cow would have been killed for a steak anyway)!  The chair is just breathtaking!

This wacky chair is called the Peacock Chair and it's from New York studio Dror for Italian furniture brand Cappellini.  Read more about it here on Dezeen.  Here is another color I like better shown in one of the articles....
oooohhh... cool!  ...and I love that it's called the Peacock Chair!

While at the Poltrona Frau Showroom that night, I entered a sweepstakes with my mom.  It's a sweepstakes by Walt Disney Signature Home brand, Cappellini furniture and designer Dror Benshetrit for a chair called the TRON Legacy chair inspired by the upcoming Disney remake of 1982's sci-fi movie TRON: Legacy.  My mom and I joked about what we would do with such a chair!  (see it below)

So get this, I get a notification e-mail on Friday morning saying "Congratulations, you are the winner of the TRON Armchair Sweepstakes... your package will be delivered Saturday 12/11/10."  Well, until Saturday morning I thought I had won the grand prize - a crazy looking $15,000 dollar designer chair from Cappellini and Designer Dror Benshetrit inspired by the movie itself!  I guess you could say I was happy and concerned all at the same time... concerned about what the heck I would do with such a chair!   Perhaps you're wondering why I would be concerned?  Well just take a look below....

TRON: Legacy, Disney's sci-fi sequel to the 1982 original
Unveiled at Art Basel 2010 DesignMiami in the Design District at the beginning of December, this is the TRON Legacy Chair it's the product of a collaboration among Walt Disney Signature lifestyle brand, modern Italian design firm Cappellini and Israeli-born designer Dror Benshetrit.  If interested, you can read more about it in articles here, here and here.

Anyway, ultimately I did not win that chair, it was a confusing congratulatory e-mail for sure!  What I actually won was a smaller prize of two tickets to the advanced screening of TRON: Legacy (tonight) and a nice big book filled with glossy photos from the movie.  Funny!  Suffice it to say I'm actually pretty relieved that was all I won!  HA!

(Images in this post are from Eva's Interdecorations  Facebook page Bobby Berk Home Facebook page and my own personal pictures)