This was my fourth straight trip to Art Basel Week in Miami. Every year is different in some way. Still, some things never change. I can say however that there are two noticeable trends now well underway.
1. Traffic Is Worse.
This may go without saying. However, it was even more painfully obvious this year. Uber made it better, even while witnessing a surge rate of 4.8x.
The taxi drivers are still figuring out what it means to have Uber in their town. I was regrettably stuck in a taxi with a driver that was lamenting a) that he wasn’t making any money and b) that people don’t want to walk anymore.
Free(er) markets are harder on some than others.
2. Gallerists (And Especially Gallery Assistants) On Mobile Devices Are Worse. Far Worse.
Yes, business does happen on mobile devices just as much as it does in person. However, the sight of gallery assistants taking selfies is . . . well, satirical.
True, the Art Basel Week attendees aren’t much better with their mobile devices. Whereas, in the past, art glaze would set in after an hour or two at a fair, mobile devices are introducing a complicating factor: Art glaze predominantly affects the brain. Typing while walking predominantly affects the body.
Just Add Alcohol
While leaving The Dutch one evening I witnessed a great example of the compounding effects of these conditions: An attendee talking on the phone coupled with his backup charger and holding a drink . . . this while trying to high five his buddy.
Clearly he wasn’t aware of the artist charging phones from her vagina just up the way. She was charging both iPhones and Androids. And, simultaneously when required.
But now I’m just rambling.