Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Surviving Art Basel 2011

Sketch by David Bolger.

It's almost time for Art Basel.

And you know what that means.

For five days starting Dec. 1, a few square blocks of Miami Beach will be packed with more pretentious a**holes per square foot than any other place on earth.

There are two ways to deal with Art Basel.

You can pretend you understand it.

Or, if you're like me, you can admit you don't.

Of course, if we had a real newspaper in this town, we might expect a couple of satirical pieces that poke fun at all the pretension. But we don't.

So we get Chamber of Commerce press releases instead.

Last year, after Art Basel left town, Gus Garcia-Roberts at Miami New Times cut through all the crap and put together a list of 25 reasons he was glad Art Basel was over: 22. "Parking in South Beach was already hell. During Art Basel, it's hell and you're dorming with Hitler."

Back then I asked Garcia-Roberts if there was anything he liked about Art Basel. He admitted that he enjoyed the free porridge and espresso at Jennifer Rubell's food installation.

Garcia-Roberts told me today he'll be attending Basel again but doesn't think Rubell will be serving porridge this year. "If they served breakfast every year, they'd be like Denny's."

But, if you've stayed away from Basel in years past because you were afraid of being intimidated by all the snobbery, Miami New Times has got your back.

Today on Riptide, staff writer Frank Alvarado posted a 21-page "Insider Guide to Art Basel Miami Beach 2011."

Alvarado reveals the genius behind guide is "Miami Beach artist and City Hall gadfly David Bolger."

Alvarado says the guide "subtly mocks Miami's guest list party culture and a few of the city's most prominent art collectors like Carlos and Rosa de la Cruz, Martin Marguiles, and the Rubells."

I'm not so sure about all that. But what I do know is that Bolger's wickedly funny sketches are probably better than anything you see at Art Basel this year.

Click here to see the guide in its entirety.

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