Tracey Rose, “Art thou not fair KniggerKhaffirKhoon” (2014), in the Dan Gunn booth (all photos by the author for Hyperallergic)

MIAMI BEACH — Art Basel Miami Beach (ABMB) opened its doors to the public on Thursday for its 13th edition. While many of the works on view deal with political themes, the overall aesthetic of the show is decidedly restrained compared to years past. Primary colors hewing toward neutral and rich earth tones seem to be the palette de rigueur. Simple and tactile materials feature prominently, including earth, wood, plaster, and natural papers. Even the inevitable works made of colored mirrors or lighting seem to avoid ostentation.

The muted tone of this year’s ABMB might be a sign of an art fair finding maturity in its second decade. There are plenty of enticing works to discover amid all the usual suspects, particularly in the Nova sector, which features young galleries and works made within the last 3 years, and the Positions sector, where each gallery booth focuses on a single artist’s project.


Tania Candiani, “Telar” (2011–14), in the Instituto de Visión booth


A gallerist operates Tania Candiani’s “Telar” machine


Antoni Tàpies, “Cadira trencada” (1993), in the Timothy Taylor Gallery booth


Rachel Whiteread, “Untitled (Stories)” (1998), in the Luhring Augustine


Roni Horn, “Untitled (‘It is curious to think of all the social, economic, psychological preconditions that are necessary in order for a Jewish actress to win a horse race.’)” (2014), in the Hauser & Wirth booth


Installation view of a recreation of Tetsuya Ishida’s studio in the Y++ Wada Fine Arts


Sherrie Levine, “Red, Yellow, Blue Mirrors: 1-3, Suite VIII” (2014), in the Paula Cooper Gallery booth


Michelle Stuart, “Galesteo” (circa1977), in the Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects booth


Pae White, “Noisy Neighborhood” (2014), in the Kauffman Repetto booth


Detail view, Ishmael Randall-Weeks, “Pilares” (2014), in the Revolver Galeria booth


Gilbert & George, “Bad Thoughts No. 2” (1975), in the White Cube booth


Hrair Sarkissian, “Homesick” (2014), in the Kalfayan Galleries booth


Meleko Mokgosi, “In essence, you can only describe the democratic intuition as other people’s children, not just yours., Exordium” (2013–14), in the Honor Fraser booth


Philippe Parreno, “Marquee (guirlande)” (2014), in the Gladstone Gallery booth


Wang Jianwei, “‘…the event matured, accomplished in sight of all non-existant human outcomes.’ No. 27” (2013), in the Long March Space booth


Ulla Von Brandenburg, “Kostüm, Tier (Costume, Animal)” 2014, in the Art: Concept booth


Gigi Scaria, “Persona” (2013), in the Chemould Prescott Road booth


Matt Mullican, “Untitled (Two People in the Subject)” (2014), in the Peter Freeman, Inc. booth

Art Basel Miami Beach continues at the Miami Beach Convention Center (1901 Convention Center Drive, Miami Beach, Florida) until Sunday, November 7.

Michael Groth is a designer and photographer based in Brooklyn, New York. His work can be found online at and