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Smartphone apps for Art Basel Miami Beach

ArtBaselMiamiBeachShowguide The sheer amount of art on display this week in Miami can be overwhelming — unless you're armed with a smartphone.

For the first time, Art Basel Miami Beach and surrounding satellite shows have a tech touch with free phone apps to help visitors navigate show floors, mark favorite pieces or take a photo of a piece to learn more about it.

Traditionally, art fairs rely on hefty catalogs and paper maps to guide showgoers. But not every show publishes a catalog, and maps are easily mislaid. The power of smartphones changes that.

For iPhone users, the Art Basel Miami Beach Showguide app offers an interactive 3D map of the Miami Beach Convention Center show floor that keys into GPS coordinates. Names of the exhibitors pop up on the map as the user glides his finger through the map’s aisles. They can then click on a gallery name to mark it as a favorite or get contact information -- even add it to the phone's address book with one touch.

The app also pulls in the official Art Basel Twitter messages of latest news and lists events throughout the week.

For Blackberry users, the app includes the same information but without the interactive map. Other smartphone users can access a dedicated mobile-friendly website.

Collectrium screengrab For visitors hitting satellite shows, The Collectrium iPhone app is designed to make the hunt for art more interactive. Users can snap a photo of a two-dimensional artwork at Art Miami, Scope Miami, Art Asia or Aqua Art Miami, and if the artwork has been logged into the app’s database, it will relay details about the artist. For Art Miami, the app also includes a show-floor map.

Collectrium satellite-fair users also can browse through exhibits to mark their favorites before arrival. And they can share their favorite art on Facebook, Twitter and via e-mail.

Read my full story in today's Herald, which also goes into how the Scope Miami show is letting collectors buy art using text messages.

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Deborah Crife

Now i can explore Art Basel Miami Beach’s galleries, artists and exhibition sectors using a highly intuitive 3D navigation system and having iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad at hand! Nice!

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