Today Art Basel Miami Beach, the goliath art fair that takes over the sunny Florida city for one weekend a year, opens its doors to the public (and quite possibly a stampede.) We perused the international fair yesterday to help you process the visual overload you're about to consume. To add a little order to the chaos, we've selected 10 trends we thought dominated this year, for better or for worse. Let us know which trends you noticed in the comments.
1. Tropical Vacation: We know, we know. We're in Miami. But we hardly need to go outside now, what with the deluge of kitschy, beach-themed works indoors. So many sunsets.
2. Art History Remix: Artists played visual DJ this year, mixing and matching art history's greatest hits to collage something entirely new.
3. Snacks: Junk food seemed to be on the brain this year, which only made the fair's insanely expensive dining options that much more enticing.
4. Aaahh!!!, (not so) Real Monsters!: Whether odd and cuddly or slightly terrifying, monstrous creatures were on the prowl no matter where you turned.
5. Renaissance Fear: Take a traditional Renaissance portrait, add a dark twist (be it face paint or a plastic baby) and voila! You've got yourself a nightmarish artwork.
6. Geode Mania: There were an abundance of ogle-worthy rocks and crystals at this year's showing. Some looked like natural treasures, others more like enchanted rust, but all of them brought out our inner geologist.
7. Mirror Image: We spotted a surplus of mirrors at last year's fair and we're sufficiently bummed to report they are back, and with a vengeance. Please, ABMB, we beg you. No more mirrors next year!
8. The Walls Are Alive!: While you look at the art, it looks at you.
9. Feathers: Painted canvases were spruced up with the added touch of gentle feathers which ruffled lightly in the
air conditioning breeze, adding an ethereal touch to the roughed up works.
10. Supply Closet Raiding: Mops, toilet paper, why not? Artists were turning cleaning supplies and toiletries into, well, towers of cleaning supplies and toiletries.
Keep a lookout as well for our runner-up trends, which include pencil drawings, bicycles, fake plants and, of course, selfies. Let us know which trends you love and which you hope will die a painful death in the comments. And enjoy the fair!