Picks of the Day 2: Art Basel | Miami Beach

Keiichi Tanaami, Dream Diary, courtesy of the artist and Karma International

If you’re planning to visit Art Basel | Miami Beach before the end of this weekend (or just wish to discover new artists from the comfort of your own home in front of your computer screen), do have a look at our earlier article. Here, we recommend more must-see works that we encountered at the fair. 


We spotted Thomas’ work at Frieze London two months ago at the booth: they’ve decided to show more of her work at Miami. Always energetic, stimulating and even defiant, Thomas’s paintings often explore the themes of black female sexuality in a candid manner. She has stated: “I’m not overly choreographing the women I work with; I’m really trying to capture a quality within them. At the same time, I can’t say that I’m not bringing what Kara Walker calls my “sexual libido” to my work, or that my own desires have nothing to do with the type of gaze I’m interested in.” Head over to Lehmann Maupin’s stand at K15 and you’ll know why we’re still enchanted by the powerful honesty of Thomas’ practice.


Many would describe Mark Flood’s work as “acerbic” or (more insultingly) “cynical”, but we beg to differ. He is best known for his lace paintings (which combined the sensually fraying fabric with the sturdiness of huge canvases). The one work by him that we saw at ’s stand (M5) didn’t strike us as being hateful or violent. Creating a sense of beauty through rupture, Flood’s work was memorable for its adroit handling of both delicate and robust materials. 


We always love an artist who doesn’t take himself too seriously. Landers’ endearing quip that “I represent the ass-end of the art world, at least I hope I do” makes us smile, but what really appeals to us about him are his frank, jumbled, raw confessions on his reputation, his critics, the art world and how he has navigated it through the years. We saw two of his paintings at the booth (K16), and were especially taken with his depiction of a tartan-print fawn.


Leading pop artist Keiichi Tanaami steals the show at the Nova section of the fair, which has conventionally been designed for galleries to present one, two or three artists showing new works created over the last three years. His psychedelic renditions of skeletons, anthropomorphic characters and pulp fiction are very much Alejandro Jodorowsky-meets-manga. If you hail from the sneering camp that declares that “pop art is dead”, head to the stand at N10 and you might just change your mind.


There are 16 galleries participating in the Positions sector of Art Basel | Miami this year: this section of the fair also serves as a platform for galleries that which to give prominence to a single artist with one visually fresh, dynamic project. For us, Nadira Husain’s work truly stood out. Check out ’s stand at P16 and have a look at her intricately patterned work, which is situated within a culturally ambiguous space. 

Art Basel | Miami Beach will run until Sunday December 8.

, 300 W 41st Street #214, Miami Beach, Florida

Images courtesy of the artists and the galleries.     

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