For 10 years, Art Basel
and Design Miami/ Basel
have been closely entwined, showing art and design alongside one another in both Miami Beach and Basel. And the pairing is a natural fit, considering that art and design have overlapped for decades—from ’s coffee tables
to ’s chairs
to ’s sugar ring
“In the earlier days of the collectible design market, people were always trying to co-opt the word art-design,” said Rodman Primack, the executive director of Design Miami/ Basel, which opened its 11th edition on Monday. “For a while, it was called art-design or design-art, I think because people didn’t think that design, and the ethics and standards and the values of design, would stand on their own. The art market was such a powerful market, that the way to get people to pay attention was to say design-art and kind of co-opt it.”
Although that’s no longer the case, and artists are experimenting with design and vice versa on their own accord—think Jessi Reaves’s recent, much talked about show at New York’s Bridget Donahue gallery, where the artist showed furniture-sculpture hybrids—art and design still continue to crossover primarily because both are aesthetic practices. So it is fitting that this year’s installment of Design Miami/ Basel features a strong showing of works that fuse art and design, from functional sculpture to artist-designed jewelry.