Miami Art Fairs: Rainbow City

There is nothing that the art world loves more than four days of non-stop money spending and networking. The Miami art fairs are quick to come and go, but this week DailyServing will track some of the highs and lows of this year’s spectacle. DailyServing writers John Pyper, Benjamin Bellas and Rebekah Drysdale weigh in on the more noteworthy works exhibited this year.

We continue this week’s coverage with Rebekah Drysdale’s review of Rainbow City.

Art Basel Miami Beach invades the shores of Dade County each December, bringing its legion of satellite fairs, pop up shows, performances, and, of course, parties. The overwhelming amount of activity can create cultural conflict for those who strive to see it all; dissecting the extensive programming is a waste of time. This year, I spent less time perusing the booths at the Convention Center and worrying about which satellite fairs to attend. Instead, I opted to embrace whatever came my way. Traveling with friends helps assuage my own art fair anxieties.

I attended Design Miami/ for the first time, due to its new and imminent presence on the P-Lot of the Miami Beach Convention Center, directly behind Art Basel. As noted by the fair’s acting director, Wava Carpenter, “There’s something magical about placing high quality design in such close proximity to high quality art; it’ll make for a very interesting conversation about the nature, boundaries and overlap between them.” Carpenter’s comment transcends this immediate comparison.

After touring the Design Miami/ tent designed by Moorhead & Moorhead, I took the shuttle downtown, where I encountered FriendsWithYou‘s environmental installation Rainbow City, a idyllic realm of childhood sounds, imagery and attitudes. Inspired by the Hindu festival Holi, Rainbow City consisted of forty inflatable characters, ranging in height from ten to forty feet. Their simple geometric design, pleasing primary palette, and repetitive sonic elements awakened a juvenescent spirit within observers of any age.

It is important to move past analysis of accessibility of these fair(s) in order to enjoy the present experience, for there remains some intrinsic connection amongst it all. As FriendsWithYou states, “Rainbow City invites spectators to participate in a responsive environment, offering an opportunity to connect physically and psychologically with an energetic yet ephemeral setting.” After all, is this not what we are all here to do?