Last week's Art Basel was as bustling as ever — there were gutsy collaborations galore and fabulous art connoisseurs sipping cocktails while talking shop at the classiest watering holes in town. Much to my chagrin, I was unable to attend this year (le sigh), so I scheduled a pow-wow with my good friend and art advisor-extraordinaire, Kimberly Light. While she flitted about Miami taking in the season's most thrilling exhibitions, she was particularly impressed by an authentically "old-school" collaborative project by Marina Abramovic and Matthu Placek.
According to Kimberly, Placek wrote and directed a 3-D film installation with a "rules are made to be broken approach" starring performance art legend Marina Abramovic at the newly-opened YoungArts Miami Bacardi Tower. The film was shot in the raw space of Abramovic's future institute set to open in the Hudson Valley — the film, a huge and risky undertaking, shot in one-durational take along with the crew responsible for The Great Gatsby. The artists chose to work with one another to best showcase one another's passions — Abramovic to continue her support for young artists, and Placek in an effort to create and capture the image of a modern-day icon.
"Essentially, the collaboration was a critique on the current media virus, "over exposed" Marina Abramovic, thus, utterly exposing Abramovic. The film won't live online, nor on DVD. It is a case of the new genre revisiting old school technique — seeking out authentic experiences and then having them in situ," said Kimberly of the collaboration. "For me, it was the most unique exhibit of Art Basel — challenging the event to the core. It stepped away from the harried rush of the art world and created an intimate sphere in which to experience the intensity of this one-woman endurance test."
And while there were of course endless artist/celebrity collaborative exhibitions and parties deserving praise for unique and impactful contributions to the art world. However, it seems that Placek's "A Portrait of Marina Abramovic" best captures the fleeting nature of an art fair environment, as well as the importance of seizing an opportunity the moment it presents itself. #WaxingPoetic