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This week, two major art events graced Miami’s Wynwood Art District calendar— the fourth annual Art Wynwood Art Fair and the third major urban and street art auction by Fine Art Auctions Miami (FAAM)—to coincide with the Miami International Boat Show and The Miami Yacht & Brokerage Show.
“We are thrilled to be hosting Art Wynwood during the busiest weekend in Miami,” commented the fair’s newly appointed director Grela Orihuela. Once considered a quieter month in the art calendar, February has proven to be the perfect time to attract locals and visitors interested in a less fussy art experience. Sixty international contemporary galleries, whose programs have a leaning toward graffiti and street art, murals and Pop, are spread across a large tent that housed Art Miami during Art Basel Miami Beach last December. “Special projects include Miami-based exhibits, which expand the conversation with our local community,” explained Orihuela, who was responsible for curating Miami locals Emerson Dorsch, GUCCIVUITTON, Primary, Fredric Snitzer Gallery, and Spinello Projects in to the SOLO Miami section of the fair.
The opening attracted a large, refreshingly diverse and upbeat crowd of art fans and browsers who enjoyed Goldman Properties sponsored Wynwood Walls “Go! Shop” pop-up, as well as work by Vienna-based artist Boicut as part of the “Cash, Cans & Candy,” international festival of street art curated by Hilger Gallery. Gallerist Ernst Hilger was also at the table when Art Wynwood honored the legendary California-based Pop artist Mel Ramos with the first annual Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award at an exclusive dinner attended by the artist and his daughter.
A few roads south, the chic SPACEBY3 warehouse is a showcase of sports cars, luxury brand pop-ups, and a street art exhibition organized FAAM.
FAMM organizers made a name for themselves at their first urban and street art auction last year that fetched over $1.3 million mostly thanks to Kissing Coppers— Banksy’s famed, black-and-white stencil image of two British policemen with lips locked—that sold for $575,000. Focusing on Russian, Impressionist, and Contemporary art, FAAM has carved a niche for itself among the Miami offices of Sotheby’s and Christie’s whose emphasis is on the Latin American markets.
Previewing the work prior to the auction that is schedule for Monday, February 16 at 5:30 PM, it is clear the auction will be accessible to the art connoisseur and newer collector alike with prices ranging from a reasonable $2,000 to an estimated high of $120,000 for Banksy’s London, New York, Bristol. That work is flanked by two Keith Haring pieces, a handful of Shephard Fairey prints, as well as works by Ron English, Faile, Phase 2, and more.
“It is our goal to create a connection between the masters and the younger generation of street artists,” comments FAAM’s street art expert Sebastien Laboureau. To do this, FAAM has created event experiences that introduce new work to the auction by unrolling a series of live works-in-progress done by international artists flown in for the occasion. KAI will create works to be auctioned to benefit the Arts and Business Council of Miami and the Guntram von Hasburg Foundation at Monday’s event.