After being overwhelmed on Thursday at the opening of Art Basel Miami 2012 at the convention center, I opted for a more manageable chunk of art on Friday, visiting the Aqua Fair. Celebrating its 8th year located in the Aqua Hotel on Collins, this fair included 47 different galleries primarily from North America. Given the layout, Aqua offered the viewer an intimate experience as the visitor is immediately aware of being in a distinctly separate space after entering the threshold of the individual rooms. Overall, the atmosphere was quite relaxed with the gallerists and many of the participating artists present and actively engaging visitors. The installation of Greg Haberny’s work at Lyons Wier offered a fantastical alternate reality as the trashed hotel room provided a glimpse into the future of a parallel universe in South Beach where after a decadent week of parties and art, one experiences the post apocalypse.
I was also quite enamored with the show at Galerie SAS which showed that our friends north of the border in Montreal have some exciting stuff going on. Laurent Craste’s porcelain works of flattened ceramics hung to mimic pelts offered an ingenious display of rustic sophistication. Jeanette Herrera’s work Vlad the Inhaler at Alida Andersen Gallery from DC simply made me laugh which was a welcome response after a few days of arched eyebrows.