More Stuff I liked at Art Basel - 2D!

More Stuff I liked at Art Basel – 2D!

With multiple art fairs open each day of Art Basel showcasing hundreds of galleries worldwide, there was no shortage of art, but it takes work to find art that resonated as relatable, blew my brain with innovating concepts or represented a marginalized point of view- especially if you’re new to the scene. Granted, only so much translates when you don’t know the artist’s background or intention (which aren’t on display along with the final pieces). Amidst all the insanely expensive art, serious buyers, and hypebeast afterparties, I took the time to document what stood out to me in terms of artists bringing creativity, innovation, and diversity to the Miami Floors.

The following 30 artists revamped the 2d space (for 3d/sculpture see Part 1).

Here’s a few artists who gave a new face to old heroes.


1. Lina Viktor Venus v Aphrodite. This lifesize painting uses actual 24k gold. And all her pieces godly with the theme of blue gold and back this round. FOLLOW HER. So glad this young black woman unapologetically realizes her power in her pieces, this piece was one that stood out the most to me at the Scope fair.



2. Hung Liu Odalisque. I been loving Hung Liu’s work, but I gagged when I read the title was Odalisque. So down for this remix of a classic European Art History style with a subtly political and totally Chinese take.



3. Dulce Pinzón Superhero series recounts portraits of Mexican Immigrants to the United States giving each a name, profile, and heroic nature regarding remittances (money sent back to their family in Mexico to live a better life).




4. Chitra Ganesh had a series of paintings from her Alternate Reality series that read as a comic centering around a cosmic brown girl hero.



5. So Youn Lee Best Wish was on display with Think Space Gallery. This young Hong Kong based artist is taking names in contemporary art with her unique style. Check her other pieces and just count how many stars and goodies you’ll find in these infant eyes. (She hella nice too so holla on social media).



6. Nina Chanel Abney mural-level pieces can transmit specific feelings of community love and war through precise mixture of pattern and forms. Such a unique style explicit and artsy at the same time. (Photo by Nastia Voynovskaya/Hi Fructose)



7. Kazuki Takamatsu hand paints layers of gauche to build ethereal images you wish you could render digitally.




8. Saner aka Edgar Flores is a street artist and designer from Mexico City bridging cultural stories and symbolism with urban life.



9. Kara Walker you already know! Born in Stockton, CA, Walker’s silhouettes have taken necessary space exploring stories to be found in the shadows of American history. I remember running into her work for the first time in high school, gasping a million times, and demanding to read more. Glad she is being rewarded for her relentless attention to race and gender.



10. Reinier Gamboa Art Basel and the international fine art community needs more diversity in artists to represent themselves, but I appreciate this Miami based Cuban artist large, painterly middle finger to American Gothic, aptly titled Native American gothic. (Note: While filming in front of this piece in a dress and angel headpiece an old white man told me “You look like their daughter, he looks like your father- so Indian!” My neck is sore from how much I SMDH.)



11. Béla Dóka Studio Panindigan series really had me wanting the homie on the left to drive with me to a ball styled by the homie on the right. (Okay so that’s probably a fishing net but I think Bjork is legit getting a run for her money.)



12. Chaz Bojorquez has been in the East L.A. graffiti world since the 1950s- talk about OG! This piece for the Cali Locos collective gives a taste of his signature “Cholo style” referencing an honored traditional code of writing.



13. Jeong Myoung-Jo The Paradox of Beauty series is wowing on face for its rendered detail of garments and self-ornamentation. The beauty shines through without the body being present, at the same time lending to the dark notion of the body’s worth. In the end, the women presumably inhabiting these outfits are turned away from you, already a step ahead of you judging them. (My total own opinionated read).



14. Caratoes is a must-follow on tumblr. This Hong Kong based street artist and illustrator paints colorful feminine figures that expand your imagination, rather than cater to an overdone objectifying heteronormative gaze of women as beautifying props.



15. Keun Young Park Float Face. THIS IS MADE OUT OF TINY BITS OF PAPER! Girl musta had to use tweezers- I can only imagine. (Bonus: use my accidental reflection to estimate proprotion!)



16. Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou is doing it up for Benin. This photographers style, flowers, and models are all a yes in my eyes.




17. Xu Zhen “Heaven” from afar seems like a red blob, but up close you realize its the top of every avant-gard cupcake that you need to eat right now. I don’t want to know how much paint and squeeze tips were involved in the making of this painting, but I do know that it is very hard not to touch it. Shoutout to red40.



18. Hyunsun Jeon really captures the seriousness with which we took our playtime as children. Bless her for that.



19. Lauren Y.S. painted this wall during Basel Castle art and music showcase and is obviously a badass. Props to anyone that recognizes the inherent aesthetic versatility of octupi. Follow this SF based artist if you’re about women, drippy things, or that #tentaclelife.



20. Joel Daniel Phillips “No Regrets in Life” series features life-size charcoal portraits of homeless people in the Bay Area. All consensual and respect-based, proceeds intentionally go back to the model or to a relevant cause.



21. Sentrock aka Joseph Perez is a Chicago based street artist who is perfectly pulling off sombre black with bright colors for a double striking pallete in these pieces. I bet he’s also one of the few people who appreciate urban pidgeons.




22. Tal Shochat is an Israeli-Persian photographer who normally takes portraits of fruit trees, but sometimes has humans grace the camera. Showing with persian owned Shulamit Gallery it was great to speak Farsi for a second in Miami! Shouts to all their work explicitly exhibiting both Middle Eastern art from both Jewish and Muslim backgrounds.



23. Karim Ghidinelli This piece is taller than your favorite NBA player. The massive aluminum with mixed media resin being scraped away to make you feel some type of way. The cursive thumbprints reflect curiosities of a person who’s moved from place to place from Italy to Guinnea Bissau, this artist has spent time across the map.




24. El Gato Chimney references European folklore and Oceanian tribes pagan rituals. The resulting characters give off a harmonious relationship with the natural elements. Besides needing a kids book series of these characters, I like how such representations subvert depictions of art history that conventionally divide civilized/backward and science/magic along Europe/GlobalSouth lines.



25. Ling Jian Tear of Idealism (White Snow). Honestly this is just a breathtaking 4ft x 4ft painting, and then the title took it to a whole other level because of the complicated relationship of violence, sacrifice, and idealism. Jian’s personal fascination is with system in China that physically and economically bind women down and the complacent men who keep it that way, but the concept resonates with struggles world wide.




26. Ye Hongxing uses cushy kawaii stickers to make gigantic murals. That really speaks for itself, let alone bringing a kitch element to traditional and religious figures as a constant reminder of how pervasive pop culture has become and how far commodification have gone. But mostly its just hella cute.



27. Paula Castro this one is for all my grown health goths out there. Castro’s ink and acryllic massic strokes break down into precise shapes that keep your mind active from afar and up close.



28. Mahmoud Bakhshi stitched flowers and Iranian men suggest a sensitivity usually overlooked by mainstream representations. Bakhshi’s own work is usually more explicitly political, but these DIY valentines made my hungover day at the fair- very tender.




29. Tarfa Fahad Alsaud art reflects her own contemplative beauty. Based in Saudi Arabia, her art’s abstract approach refuses to be pidgeonholed to identity politics and strives to pluck the chords of universal human emotion.



30. Balint Zsako should really design a set of Tarot cards if he hasn’t already. With a whole grid of pieces up at Mulherin Toronto’s booth, I really wanted to know the mythological world of fire, color, and cosmos laid out in his work (especially the divine Venus meets Fantastic Four figure).




We did it! Good job!

Want more? ~* Also see Part 1: Stuff I liked at Art Basel – 3D Edition! *~

~* Coming soon: Improvisational Video captioning the more random, elite, or sus art we saw. *~