The works that caught the art world's eye in Miami Beach

We asked insiders to share the fair works that jumped out at them and how they felt to be back in Miami

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“One of the knockout works”: Ja’Tovia Gary, Citational Ethics (Toni Morrison, 1987) (2021)

“One of the knockout works”: Ja’Tovia Gary, Citational Ethics (Toni Morrison, 1987) (2021)

Noah Horowitz, Sotheby’s worldwide head of gallery and private dealer services

Is it good to be back in Miami?

It’s fantastic to be back and to see Art Basel and the city thriving. It is obviously somewhat surreal to experience the fair in my new guise as visitor rather than organiser, but beyond wonderful to see so many friends and colleagues from all over the world, to make new artistic discoveries and to see a dynamic new generation of galleries in the halls.

Which works caught your eye at Art Basel in Miami Beach?

My highlights: Keiichi Tanaami in Meridians with Nanzuka Gallery (Red Shade, 2021), a fantastic, newly produced film by an iconic Japanese artist; and Roberto Gil de Montes at Kurimanzutto (Gretel, 2021), a new discovery for me, a 70-year-old immensely talented Mexican figurative painter. Wow!

One of the knockout works of the show is Citational Ethics (Toni Morrison, 1987) (2021) by Ja’Tovia Gary at Paula Cooper, poetically melding urgent issues around Black history by way of Toni Morrison and Martin Luther King.

Also, Virtuous thoughts don’t count (2021) by Nora Turato at Gregor Staiger—performance, consumer critique and hyper-smooth industrial form as one. She is one of the most important up-and-coming artists of her generation.

Gianni Jetzer picked David Alekhuogie’s 34.0113°N, 118.3358°W, Crenshaw and Martin Luther King Drive (2021)

Gianni Jetzer, curator-at-large, Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, DC

Is it good to be back in Miami?

Yes! It will be remembered as an edition focused on art (with a few parties).

Which works caught your eye at Art Basel in Miami Beach?

Los Angeles artist David Alekhuogie at Yancey Richardson gallery brings photography to the next level (34.0113°N, 118.3358°W, Crenshaw and Martin Luther King Drive, 2021).

Amy Whitaker chose Demarco’s My Handful of Melancholy Year 3001 (2021)

Amy Whitaker, assistant professor, visual arts administration, New York University

Which works caught your eye at Art Basel in Miami Beach?

I like Valentín Demarco's work at Isla Flotante gallery (My Handful of Melancholy Year 3001, 2021): small, intricately carved metal charms—both those from popular culture and from traditional Argentinian craft metalworking—arranged in large grids and installed that way, directly into the wall. Also, treat yourself to an ice cream at Angie's on the second floor. Look for the pink bus and be prepared for an immaculate small scoop, perfectly drizzled date syrup and an edible flower.

My friend Warren Woodfin, a Byzantine art history professor from Queens College, City University of New York, also recommends Paul Mpagi Sepuya's photographs at Galerie Peter Kilchmann (Figure OX5A6168, 2019). There's something nice about “What would a Byzantinist say?” at a contemporary art fair.

Hans Ulrich Obrist picked Fred Eversley’s Untitled, parabolic lens (2021) at Nicola Vassell gallery

Hans Ulrich Obrist, artistic director, Serpentine Galleries, London

Which works caught your eye at Art Basel in Miami Beach?

Keiichi Tanaami, who is in his mid-80s, is showing a new film at Nanzuka gallery (Red Shade, 2021). The film brings together the artist’s surreal dreams and his living and dynamic memories from the Second World War to today.

Another pioneering artist is Fred Eversley and his resin sculptures, which oscillate between opacity and transparency, at Nicola Vassell gallery (Untitled, parabolic lens, 2021). These are a highlightalong with many emerging artists. One of them, Ambera Wellmann, has a solo booth with Company gallery (works include Mood, 2021). I was already struck by her painting of a polluted landscape in the New Museum triennial (Strobe, 2021). Everything seems to be morphing in permanent transformation and yet it’s a painting which does not move.

Bettina Korek selected Eddie Rodolfo Aparicio: Libre De Fosforo Blanco (W.Washington blvd and Hoover St., LA, CA, USA) (2021)

Bettina Korek, chief executive, Serpentine Galleries, London

Which works caught your eye at Art Basel in Miami Beach?

I loved Betye Saar’s historic window and new watercolours at Roberts Projects (Black Doll in the Mystic City, 2021),and also the rubber-wrapped tree piece at Commonwealth and Council by Eddie Rodolfo Aparicio: Libre De Fosforo Blanco (W.Washington blvd and Hoover St., LA, CA, USA) (2021).

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