Dec 17, 2012 4:41PM

Miami Diary: Art Basel In 48 Hours 

Chaos and debauchery; irony and neon signs.

A far cry from the significantly toned down original art fair in Basel, Switzerland, Art Basel Miami comes with hookers, hookah, and high fashion.

I landed on Thursday evening and jumped feet first into the clusterfuck that is Art Basel. My first excursion was to the Marni store in the Design District where the Castiglioni family was hosting a private viewing of their new furniture project, 'L'Arte del Ritratto', a collaboration between the Marni Charity Project and artist Francesco Jodice (I found myself in tears of joy and disbelief when I got to speak to my fashion icon, the one and only Consuelo Castiglioni!). From there we headed to the Bugatti by Bernar Venet dinner party at the Rubell Family Collection where I was beyond ecstatic to find that said dinner was a Nobu buffet! Yahtzee! After six unsuccessful sprints to find a taxi, we finally secured one and made our way to the SLS Hotel for the Visionaire/Net-A-Porter soiree where Visionaire/V Magazine founder Ms. Cecilia Dean was dressed to the nines in a stunning floor-length red sheath dress. From there we went for a nightcap at Andre Saraiva's traveling pop-up club, Chez Andre, where they were celebrating the launch of artist Richard Prince's most recent collaboration with — wait for it — Arizona Iced Tea.

Since the 'art' component of Art Basel Miami has been slowly making its way into the background (to be replaced by parties and 24-hour hangovers), we made a point to spend Friday actually seeing the art, and began at the Nada Art Fair where we ran into Ryan McGinley, who had the same ingenious idea that we had — to see the art! From there we made our way over to Art Basel where I was inundated with art from every angle. While it's nearly impossible to take it all in in just one day, I always make sure to stop by famed Gemini G.E.L. gallery, home to original work and prints by artists like Richard Serra, John Baldessari, and Robert Rauschenberg.

Later that night we went to the Moncler 60th Anniversary Dinner Party where we found a top floor parking lot magically transformed into a fairytale Cinderella wonderland and I felt like a princess. After the dinner we made our way over to the afterparty which was at Saraiva's other haunt, Le Baron (Le Baron changed their location every night of Basel, only to be found by word-of-mouth), where Derek Blasberg, Bianca Brandolini, and Moncler designer Giambattista Valli held court all night near the DJ booth. After Baron we stopped by Chez Andre for a final round of karaoke and tunes courtesy of resident DJ Wade Crescent, who spun until sunrise. Due to divine intervention, I somehow managed to board the plane the next day. I had never been happier to go from 85 to 0 degree weather in my life. #48hoursatBasel.

Gillian Sagansky


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