In 2014 the functional glass industry made its first big splash at Miami Art Basel through Habatat Galleries’ show, giving the audience there a small glimpse into our world. For 2015, we made our presence much more known; lets recap an amazing time at Art Basel.
Let’s start with my brothers from Green Planet Smoke Shop who hosted a fantastic 3-day exhibition at Gallery 212 right in the heart of Wynwood entitled “Lifelol”. Marcel and the whole team did a great job of curating a very prestigious line-up of artists; truly bringing the best of the best for collectors that made the trip to Miami. The prime location right across from the Wynwood Walls really gave amazing exposure to the art, letting more of the general public wandering Art Basel see this amazing medium. As I walked around and engaged some of the people not familiar with functional glass art it was really fun to see the reactions not only to the work, but also to the pricing. From people thinking its preposterous, to people thinking its undervalued; it was a great opportunity to gauge other peoples perception of it.
Green Planet brought work out from the likes of Chris Carlson, JD Maplesden, Alex Ubatuba, Stormin Norman, Mike Gong, and much more! Some beautiful non-functionals from Rose Roads and Yoshinori Kondo also made their debut at the show; but were scooped within minutes of opening! Thankfully Marcel kept all the art on display for the full 3 days giving everyone a chance to enjoy them visually before the new owners enjoyed them properly 😉
Justanothergallery held their “Pop n Drop” during Art Basel also, essentially a pop-up shop that had its location released right before the work became available. Work from Calm, Chris Carlson, and JAG was released with the big anticipation item being JAGs moneybag drop. Within minutes of the location being released there was a line outside of the warehouse, easily over 200 glass collectors lined up to buy some art. It was great to watch the general public and other non-glass artists reaction to the drop, they could not believe the ease in which that large of an audience was brought out; with such willingness to spend unlimited amounts on glass art. Carlson brought some beautiful little sets featuring his “spoobs” and also some amazing Weave Chip earrings. Other than the unbearable humidity and heat in that building, it was a really fun drop and really showcased how much our little glass family supports one another.
I also made sure to attend the Casa de Cristal Meet and Greet with JD Maplesden and Sleek. Casa switched up the format and held a meet and greet while providing some fantastic food from the hosting restaurant, Eating House. Dishes were coming out throughout the night fueling the collectors while they shopped and hung out with fellow collectors. Both artists brought some really stunning functional glass art, with some surprise appearances by Mike Gong and Nick Bailey. I really enjoyed this format as I am a big foodie, and I think it really gave collectors and artists a chance to interact at an intimate level while relaxing. Definitely looking forward to more events by Casa, great job boys!
Overall Art Basel 2015 was a very progressive event for the functional glass art industry, giving us much more exposure than 2014; a trend that will definitely continue at Art Basel 2016!
Make sure you keep an eye out for our Art Basel 2016 event; we will be starting to release information very soon.
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