Sunday, December 9, 2007

"Indie Fairs full of surprises" - Miami Herald

Indie fairs full of surprises
Posted on Thu, Dec. 06, 2007

Fifty-seven galleries exhibited contemporary photography at Photo Miami in a 40,000 square-foot tent in Wynwood.

''It's hard to gauge sales, but we had some folks from the Guggenheim Museum and Santa Barbara Museum of Art come through earlier,'' said Tim Fleming, director of the 2-year-old fair that's gained about 15 galleries since its debut. On Thursday afternoon, the second day of fair, there were just a few red dots on the walls, indicating sold pieces. ''There's no rush. There's plenty of time'' for buying, Fleming said.

Although it has ''photo'' in its name, the fair also include a handful of video and electronic pieces. On the more traditional end was Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq, a series of large print images of Iraq war veterans, many with prosthetic limbs, by noted portrait photographer Timothy Greenfield-Sanders. (Greenfield-Sanders' portraits were part of an HBO documentary of the same name.)

Admission to Photo Miami, located at 3101 North Miami Ave., is $15 for access through Sunday. It's open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday.


Fourteen small and independent galleries, many from Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighborhood, showcased young artists' work at Fountain Miami, a 10,000-square-foot warehouse space that purposely has a rough and unfinished feel to it, said organizers.

''What really sets Fountain apart is the camaraderie and friendship between these galleries. We're all within walking distance of each other back home,'' said Christina Ray, founder of Brooklyn-based gallery and performance art space Glowlab.

Although most art pieces were for sale -- many for less than $500 -- Ray said Fountain's purpose was equally about showcasing experimental and developing artists as it was about sales. The red dots that dominate Art Basel and other exclusive sales were nowhere to be seen.

For Fountain's first year in 2007, Glowlabs hosted The Sams, where more than 50 bald performers recruited by the gallery hopped from parties to gallery openings dressed as and impersonating Art Basel Director Samuel Keller, a seemingly omnipresent figure at the fair's numerous events. ''It was fun,'' but don't expect to see that again, said Ray. Fountain Miami is at 2841 NW 2nd Ave., open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday. Admission is $2


At Edge Zones, a 12,000-square-foot space in Wynwood, the focus is Latin American artists. Of note were eight large original photos of collaborations by Mexican-American performance artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña, whose works comment on ethnic and linguistic identity and colonialism, were on display. With price tags as high as $15,000, they had gone unsold. Other artists whose work was display included Miamians José Bedia, Nicolás Leiva and Rubén Torres-Llorca.

Edge Zones, at 2214 N. Miami Ave., is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily (open till 11 p.m. Saturday). Admission is free.


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