Michael Farley does Aqua
Aqua opened on Wednesday night. It’s always one of my favorite parties— so nice to duck in and out of hotel room/galleries into their open-air courtyard and take in the awesome views of Collins Ave. This year, some projects seemed perfectly suited to the kind of bizarre context of a tropical motel-cum-exhibition space.
Prime example: these “upholstered” chairs by Edra Soto in Art Slant’s room. Best Miami Beach accessory since Tracy Emin designed flip flops for the Fontainbleau.
I was really excited to see so many familiar faces from the mid-Atlantic. This video piece by Joshua Haycraft at Hamiltonian Gallery is totally mesmerizing. It’s an odd dust bunny/nebula thing revolving slowly and reminds me a little of those “fireplace” channels that you can’t look away from.
Also at Hamiltonian, there are these four pieces by Baltimorean Ryan Hoover. He wrote a computer algorithm that “randomly” mimics the growth pattern of trees and employed it to engrave these wood-grain laminate panels.
A few doors down, at Sandra Lee Gallery, this piece by Jungsan is deceptively minimalist from the front.
From the side, the grid is revealed to be comprised of match boxes decorated with nailpolish. It’s a little like a white mid-century Miami Beach hotel with colorful towels drying off the sides of balconies.
Ghostprint gallery had these totally gorgeous, detailed pen-on-paper cityscapes by Benjamin Sack. My absolute favorite is this one, “A Suburb of Utopia”. It reminds me of Archigram’s fantastical architectural proposals from the 70s.
Washington DC’s Morton Fine Art was showing some really striking photos by MICA grad Stephon Senegal.
And this oil painting “Vigilance” by Ethan Diehl that’s rendered in pixels like grainy surveillance camera footage.
This year, the honeymoon suite on the second floor hosted some of my favorite work, but I couldn’t find information about the artists or the gallery anywhere. These 3D- Printed shoes are amazing though.
Next door, Autobody Fine Art showed this tapestry by Anastasia Shipani. It’s not really my style, but I’m always really impressed by art work that fills a room.
Roza Azora, from Moscow, showed these really nice fibers works that look like drawings done in embroidery.
I can’t remember the name of the gallery, but they were also showing fiber work with an early-modern influence.
As well as these amazing drawings of Courtney Love.
The absolute highlight of Aqua is Elizabeth Leach Gallery’s room. It’s an interactive project by MK Guth called “Advice Station.” Visitors can offer the artist advice/ask for advice about attending an art fair.
I got this totally appropriate fortune cookie.
Guth began collecting the advice months ago and created a series of images based on the online submissions. I’m guessing this one has something to do with packing 100 Grand and something that can double as a bathing suit and dance party attire.
And the single most Miami Art Fair sight: the trashcan with nothing but a Perrier and the opened fortune cookies of people who wanted to see the message but not eat the carbs.
Author Michael Farley was born at John’s Hokpins Hospital, attended MICA for a BFA in Interdisciplinary Sculptural Studies, and recently received an MFA in Imaging Media and Digital Arts from UMBC. He has a complicated relationship with institutional critique. Although he went to digital art school, he has no website, but did switch to electronic cigarettes.