Miami Art Basel 2013 Highlights

Jake and Dinos Chapman Miami Art Basel 2013

Jake and Dinos Chapman, ‘In Our Dreams We Have Seen Another World’ , 2013 -White Cube Gallery.

Yesterday was Miami Art Basel 2013′s preview, and B/D was there to get the scoop on Basel’s most innovative and interesting works. Here we’ve picked out a few pieces that caught our eye. Hope you enjoy these as much as we did!

Jakes and Dinos Chapman’s diorama fuses sensitive religious themes with mass branding and symbols of the global fast food chain, McDonald’s. The rather crude, and disturbing maquette juxtaposes, or rather, finds parallels between what seems to be violent scenes of apocalypse and crucifixions, and the globalization of American fast food chains. The artwork exudes great hostility; it truly makes for an uncomfortable yet very entertaining, and satisfying viewing. The piece pinpoints and creates controversy, as it look at a global economy superpower through the eyes of uncensored, critical, and dry humor.

evan penny  miami art basel 2013

Evan Penny, ‘Female Stretch, Variation #2′, 2011- Sperone Westwater Gallery

Evan Penny’s sculpture was probably one of my top personal highlights from Basel. ‘Female Stretch’ is strange and confusing to look at. The artist accomplishes a flat look out of a three-dimensional sculpture. Besides the bizarre proportions, which I hope you can appreciate through the photos, I can say that Penny’s craftsmanship shines quite brightly through the sculpture’s accuracy when it came to small details. Hair, eyelashes and skin textures are almost impressively realistic looking.

Mark Nixon’s Photographs Of Vintage Teddy Bears

vintage teddy bears

Bobo-age: 34.Height: 12″
Belongs to: Shane Maher

vintage teddy bears

Beary (6) Height 12”
Belongs to: Tom O’Connor Jr

vintage teddy bears

Daddy Bunny (7 ½) Height 14” -Belongs to: Zoe Bracken

Flopsie (6) Height 14" Belongs to: Lua Spencer

Flopsie (6) Height 14″
Belongs to: Lua Spencer

Photographer Mark Nixon creates portraits of worn-out vintage teddy bears in the series Much Loved Bears. These nostalgic portraits immortalize the innocence of youth; better yet, the goodness and appreciation of a child, as they hold on to the old with no remorse. The photographs are paired with text provided by the owner and they are part of a book called Much Loved.

The funny looking portraits project a sense of irony, as seeing the teddy bear, a signifier of early age, and their ‘wear’ and ‘tear’, a signifier of old age, together generate an interesting tension between the two. The battered teddy bears are a symbol of love, respect and friendship- moreover an undenying preservation of a friend that was important, and therefore hard to replace.

“When you see these teddy bears and bunnies with missing noses and undone stuffing, you can’t help but think back to childhood and its earliest companions who asked for nothing and gave a lot back.”

It feels as if these photographs also expound on a critical string of thoughts regarding the journey of becoming older, and what it means to be an owner of something today. The fact that we so easily get rid of ‘damaged’ material things with the eagerness of wanting more and ‘better’ is something that contrasts Nixon’s attention to the teddy bear’s ‘battlescars’; for a kid,however, the damaged but useful and loved, is not something to easily get rid of. (Via My Modern Met)

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Cyriak Harris

Cyriak Harris is an artist living in Brighton. He makes splendid videos that remind me of the sensation of sugar on my tongue. I feel the urge to push and push, but each video tells me to sit down and understand that “everything is going to be okay.”