You Can’t Say Party Without Saying Art

You can’t say party without saying art.

Which is why Miami Art Basel is perhaps a perfect hybrid of art with party, now becoming elevated with brands cashing in on the crafty nature of a once historic buyers’ showcase, now a vacation hotspot to escape Siberian winters in the Northeast with they hypnotic (and often raunchy) vibe of South Beach. Of the many parties resplendently seen on press and accolades, the two that made me ponder most were ones that exhibited an alternate reality.

The 19th edition of SCOPE Miami Beach had extraordinary cultural impact, what with 140 International Exhibitors from 25 countries and 60 cities, it was the interpretation of modern art that was diabolical and set many imaginations on fire with the sheer quantity of creativity. While sporting a classic Topman dork tee and an epic Print All Over Me jacket with distressed white Miami shorts (obviously), the four trends I picked up were as follows.

Animals Reinterpreted: Whether bejeweled in textured metal, graffiti-ed with logos of couture brands, reinterpreted cardboard stag heads and more, all splashed in unnatural colors, the love for animal art was real.

Body Forms: From puzzle pieces to nudes to the crave for perfectly sculpted bodices, the array of bodies was staggering, and alluring.

Upgraded Retro: From Audrey Hepburn to Mona Lisa, many classic works of the renaissance or pop culture era were given significant modern upgrades, including saturated colors, tech insertions, or even very simply, tattoos.

Typography and Word Games: Owing to my penchant for literature and my love for writing fiction, this was obviously a feeling of deep resonance. One look at my Instagram captions validates this sentiment.

The last trend took me to Sarah Bahbah‘s work at the Miami Edition, who has always given me a deeply emotional jolt at some of her observations on real, raw and intense feelings and imperfect modern day relationships. From a desire of lust and love, commitment phobia, loneliness and desire, the feelings were always immaculately pictured individuals in various stages of distress or undress, with words and quotes that could tear your heart out. The messages are simultaneously liberating as they are relatable, with an undeniable influence on Gen Z, millennials, and a quietly tragic nostalgia to boomers. Truly, a woman of words that have the power to be timeless. Which is why, when poised at a gin fueled party in an underground club where yours truly sported Roberto Cavalli leopard print, the feelings were even more amplified.

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