Saturday, December 15, 2012
Neon lights have lit signs for countless of years now, but looking at
wouldn’t expect them to be considered art. They are just
lights that shout “open” into
a dark street or something similar. To
most that really isn’t anything special.
Olivia Steele would beg to differ.
Born in Nashville, Tennessee the conceptual neon artist has made a
career out of
taking the bright lights and using them to spell out
idioms and statements from her
childhood. As she says, she grew up in a
home where her “Father had a statement
or idiom for everything. There
was an answer for everything with a quote” and it was
statements that Steele “found a solution and an answer to the ins and
outs of life.”
Monday, December 10, 2012
There is no easy way to define "art." Any attempt at simplification
risks making the writer sound uninformed at best. There are countless
experts and publications who have created an industry debating what is
true art, though the discourse these days seems to center more on
economic rather than artistic value.
Perhaps as a backlash, I've
heard buzz during Art Basel about another question: "What is not art?"
What exactly falls into that category? Is it the piece in the hallowed
Miami Beach Convention Center that is essentially two empty coat racks?
The neon bench? How about a performance by an artist who "pops up,"
randomly screaming in public places? Or my favorite, the live tiger in a
cage in the middle of the Hotel Victor's nightclub? Yes, live tiger.
you navigate some of the murkier waters of the 20-plus fairs around
town, I suggest you play this party game with your friends: Is It Art?
far as I'm concerned, at least for one spectacular week when Art Basel
is in Miami,
the answer is always YES. Part of that comes from the
nature of art itself,
but I like to think there is also the influence of
our Magic City. Art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.
have beer (or in this case, champagne) goggles, but we find beauty and
They city has opened its arms and embraces Art in all
Now, if only the bouncers working the velvet ropes at the parties were so welcoming.
What's the most outrageous thing you've seen that is – or isn't – art?
--Florencia Jimenez-Marcos is an art enthusiast who lives in Miami