Ticket to ride the artist
People are usually discouraged from climbing on public art, but in Collins Canal Park on Wednesday, they queued to saddle up on Los Angeles artist rafa esparza, who was strapped into a kinetic sculpture he had cast from his own body. The resulting performance, Corpo RanfLA: Terra Cruiser (2022), incorporated esparza into the frame of a bright green, futuristic bicycle, kitted out with shiny accessories in a nod to the ornate lowrider cars associated with his East Los Angeles neighbourhood. The sculptural piece was mounted atop a pony ride machine, modified to mimic the up-and-down movements of a lowrider; after climbing aboard, participants donned headphones to hear a scripted recording by the artist. Organised by the Los Angeles Times’s Image magazine and the gallery Commonwealth and Council, the performance connected the policing and co-opting of lowrider culture with gay cruising, both popular activities in Los Angeles’s Elysian Park—and in Miami.
Fast food—with taste
UK artist Lucy Sparrow has brought her ingenious works stateside again with a display of “felt fast food favourites” on show at the Scope art fair (until 4 December). Sparrow’s homage to McDonalds, titled MC-Happiness, includes firm favourites such as Big Macs, Happy Meals and Filet-O-Fish, all available over a felted counter (of course) in a hand-sewn booth. Sparrow points out on her Instagram feed that this installation is a replica of a 1992 restaurant she visited as a child with her mum, adding that she is a “massive fan” of the Golden Arches. Prices for the twee textile works range from $25 for a couple of ketchup sachets to $900 for a super combo meal that comes with a burger, fries and shake. Gives a whole new meaning to the art world term of “flipping”…
Taking the piss
During Art Basel, most of the art world takes some much needed “me time”, often on the beautiful sandy Florida shores. But one esteemed UK-based curator, who shall remain nameless, warns that jellyfish can be a hazard in these lush waters. The fellow in question says that he was once stung by one of the aquatic predators while taking a dip. Remembering that spirit vinegar is the best remedy for the painful bite, he ventured into a nearby hotel where he asked for the tonic in question. “We only have balsamic I’m afraid,” was the response. Thankfully, the mildly annoying wound was eventually soothed—and, we are assured, no weeing was involved. Phew!
Overheard in Miami: “It’s raining gallerist tears”Amy Boone-McCreesh, artist and editor of digital art publication Inertia, reflecting on the sudden downpour outside the Miami Beach Convention Center on Thursday afternoon
Sofa, so good: edible furniture a winner
Has the art at Art Basel in Miami Beach ever looked good enough to eat? (Silly question—of course it has.) Fair-goers were faced with just that dilemma earlier this week, when the Argentine artist Leandro Erlich presented two large-scale sculptural installations that could be devoured—by the mouth rather than the eyes. You Can’t Have Your Cake and Eat It Too are replicas of Mies van der Rohe-designed furniture made entirely of cake, and all for sale. “Erlich plays with the viewer’s sense of perception and introduces doubt about our own sensorial input,” a statement from Luciana Brito Galeria says. During special performances at the gallery’s stand, visitors were able to chow down on Erlich’s edible art. Yum.
Stars show their arty side
The star wattage at Art Basel in Miami Beach has not dimmed since the appearance early in the week of Venus Williams and Jon Bon Jovi. We hear, for instance, that the rapper Doja Cat was seen at the fair pondering a Francis Bacon. The actor Jared Leto was meanwhile spotted looking “authoritative” about works at Sean Kelly’s stand. And of course, Miami wouldn’t be Miami without Leonardo Di Caprio turning up. The movie star was seen eyeing up a Grayson Perry, which features Mark Zuckerberg’s huge head hanging over a map of America.
The famous fraudster Anna Sorokin (aka Anna Delvey) is making her presence felt in Miami via a live Zoom Q&A scheduled for this weekend (3 December). Delvey is promoting her own “art” at a top secret special event called The House (Arrest) Party which, we are told, will be attended by musicians Boogieman and Sight Beyond Sound (whoever they are). A press statement gushes that “Delvey’s new work represents the incorporation of acrylics and canvas following her greater access to materials following [sic] her incarceration and creation while famously on house arrest in NYC.” The works will be available for purchase by interested collectors through a partnership with The Locker Room gallery. But considering Delvey’s past, perhaps we should add a final warn: buyers beware.
Street artists score in Wynwood
Brazilian street art comes to Miami this week with an exhibition of work by four São Paulo-based graffiti artists at the Mi Campo Artist Lounge in Wynwood. Organised by the Museum of Graffiti, the street pieces are all inspired by olé, the often-heard chant during a football game when a team is performing brilliantly or when a tip-top shot is made at goal. The artists Ise, Thiago Nevs, Finok and Skola have all contributed to the soccer show, which is timely in light of the Fifa World Cup in Qatar. A pithy press statement points out that “the street is the artists’ cradle, and emerging from intuitive play and self-taught, these boys develop the skills of a master, and over time they reach glory and come out of anonymity to hear cries of olé, and maybe be cheered on the football field or on the great art circuits.” Back of the net.