Overall, however, the fair – along with its myriad satellite events, such as Untitled, NADA, and Design Miami – provided further proof that the art market is largely immune to social and political upheaval.
Most galleries, especially the top dealers, had strong sales, including a Noah Davis painting for $ 1.4 million and an Ad Reinhardt abstract for over $ 7 million at David Zwirner, as well as ‘a Keith Haring for $ 1.75 million and an Elizabeth Murray for $ 725,000 at Gladstone. Salon 94 sold a double Dutch jump rope sculpture by Karon Davis for $ 150,000 to streetwear mogul James Whitner.
“It was kind of like Groundhog Day,” said Tim Blum of the Blum & Poe Gallery. “If you pass by the fair, you might think it is 2019.”
Indeed, the evenings were packed with dinners and parties – Alicia Keys performed in the immersive Superblue exhibition space in the Miami Design District – with most of the guests decked out wearing no masks (and lamenting the traffic jams). ). Many noted how happy they were to physically meet in Miami Beach to see art and kiss again (yes, aerial kisses are back).
“There is nothing quite like seeing people in person and having engaged conversations,” said Jo Stella-Sawicka, senior director of the Goodman Gallery, which has offices in Johannesburg, Cape Town and London. , adding that she was already flying to Florida when news of the new variant broke.
While the fair’s scheduled entrance precluded the usual opening scramble through the gates – and some collectors complained about not getting the time slots they wanted – gallery owners said the more spaced entrances allowed calmer and more substantive conversations with visitors.