Art Basel Miami 2021: 6 Must-Attend Events Not To Miss

Get ready to vibe out and celebrate diversity in art culture.

With booster shots, hand sanitizer, and masks — in black, of course — all readily available for folks all over the world, this year’s Art Basel in Miami’s South Beach is prime for an official winter wild out session.

Celebrities, collectors, and crypto enthusiasts showed up in droves to crowd in and admire — and consider buying — pieces by artists such as Qualeasha Wood, Troy Makaza, and Betye Saar. In the past, galleries would be segmented to the fairer shaded artists, while the after-parties only felt Black musicians and entertainers as eligible into the space.

In the past, we’d only have Jay-Z raps to bank on when it came to legacy and estate building. But over the past year, Art Basel, with its changes to its admission requirements, has made a concerted effort to invite marginalized galleries and overlooked Black artists to apply. The shift was noteworthy, as just over a year ago, Art Basel’s online iteration did not include a single Black American-owned gallery.

RELATED: Art Basel Miami 2021: Black Artists You Should Know

This year, I planned my schedule ahead to be Black at Art Basel in a major way. I wanted a history lesson, not only in Black art but to learn how to become a Black art collector. As obstacles for entry were lowered, the quality was heightened as Kendra Jayne Patrick’s booth was “must-see TV,” and talk of NFTs wafted heavily in the air — I was visually stimulated by all of it and put together a shortlist of places you, too, should check out.

All that said, here are six must-attend things to you at Art Basel Miami Beach 2021.

SCOPE | Afternoon Talks

Location: Scope Miami Beach Pavilion

Address: 801 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach
Date: Dec. 05, 2021

Time: 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Tickets: $40 - $200

Celebrating its 20th year, SCOPE returns to its iconic location on the sands of Miami Beach to showcase an extraordinary selection of contemporary art. Presented by 140 international exhibitors, SCOPE will take art lovers on a deep dive into the history of Black creativity and imagination. Featured author, Charles Moore, will join fellow artists, advisors, and collectors to speak about his debut book, The Black Market: A Guide to Art Collecting.

For anyone wanting to learn how to build a more equitable and sustainable market for all parties in the art world, this is one not-to-miss.

Stay afterward to enjoy the Q&A session and book signing, led by Mr. Moore.

Point Comfort Art Fair + Show

Location: The Historic Ward Rooming House & Gallery

Address: 249 NW 9th Street, Miami, FL
Date: Dec. 3 - 5, 2021
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Tickets: Prices may vary.

Q: What happens when an HBCU lands in Miami’s South Beach? A: A vibrant exhibit that showcases the historical and artistic beauty on loan from various Black institutions.

Thanks to the good folx at Hampton Art Lovers, a Virginia-based gallery focused on celebrating fine art by Black Americans, their second installment of it Point Comfort Art Fair + Show will introduce work in a fully enclosed, controlled tent. Buck!, a true Baltimore native and graduate of Hampton University, will be featured at this year’s event. When spoke to him about why art lovers should check out the show, he says, “[You] should come to the Point Comfort show to [witness] the complex diversity of thought and conversation within the lexicon of Black art.”

Once on the ground, be sure to check out the other talented artists featured in the show, which include Athlone Clarke, Purvis Young, Tiffani Glenn, Judy Bowman, and more.

Jack Shainman Gallery

Location: Miami Beach Convention Center

Address: 1901 Convention Center Drive, Miami Beach, Booth J3
Date: Dec. 2 - 4, 2021
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. (Fri.) | 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. (Sat.)
Tickets: $65

Jack Shainman Gallery has for decades been dedicated to championing artists who’ve achieved mastery of their own creative disciplines. They are among the most compelling and influential contributors to art culture today. The past four decades have earned Jack Shainman Gallery a reputation for introducing, promoting, and developing young and mid-career international artists to American audiences, who have gone on to gain worldwide acclaim.

Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, a British painter and writer, is certainly one to check out at Basel this year. Known for her portraits of imaginary subjects and muted colors, her work has contributed to the renaissance in the painting of the Black figure. With appearances at Tate Collection, The Museum of Modern Art, and a permanent collection at the Art Gallery Museum of Southern Australia, Yiadom-Boakye is also a 2018 Carnegie Prize winner, and one not to miss if you can still get a ticket.

Victoria Miro

Location: Miami Beach Convention Center
Address: 1901 Convention Center Drive, Miami Beach, Booth H4
Date: Dec. 2 - 4, 2021
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. (Fri.) | 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. (Sat.)
Tickets: $65

If you’re looking to see work by both established and emerging artists from across the U.S., Europe, and Asia, well, the Victoria Miro show is right up your alley. The pandemic-plagued year has not waned excitement for this year’s gallery exhibit, which includes Black British artist Chris Ofili. He built his reputation by combining dots of paint, collaged images, and elephant dung applied to the surface. If you really want to know who’s the s**t in this art thing, then cop your ticket and don’t miss out on what’s happening at Booth H4.

Dante’s Hifi

Location: Dante’s Hifi
Address: 519 NW 26th Street, Miami
Date: Dec. 2 - 4, 2021
Time: 7:00 p.m. - 1 a.m.
Tickets: $25 (RSVP Recommended)

When you have one of the world’s classiest DJs, Rich Medina, alongside a rich (pun intended) collection of sound curators, then Dante’s Hifi is a place for you to pack out and make it shake. Miami’s Art Basel 2021 will feature Black and Basel-baddies enjoying high-end sound provided by A Trak Dave 1 of Chromeo (Dec. 3), DJ Ray, Dave Wilkes, and Lloyd Ski (Dec. 4) and, of course, Rich Medina and Benji B, the latter being the musical director of Louis Vuitton (Dec. 5), for an evening not to forget.

Le Art Noir

Location: African Heritage Cultural Arts
Address: 6161 NW 22nd Avenue, Miami
Date: Dec. 3 - 5, 2021
Tickets: $25

Rounding out the time at Art Basel Miami Beach will be the 2021 Le Art Noir Exhibit. Billed as a unique multicultural collaboration of artists from all around the globe, this collection will showcase innovative exhibitions that capture the true heartbeat within society.

Featuring Johnathan Schultz, Tonio the Creator, and former NBA player and visual artist, Desmond Mason, the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center is a place where you’re sure to find a new artist to love (and possibly love for yourself) at this venue, this weekend.

Charneice Fox is an award-winning writer and director. Her debut feature film, Love Dot Com, is currently streaming on BET Plus. She is also an Executive Producer at The PKWY Agency.

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