Faena Forum opens with VIP-filled dedication that promised to shift "the world's center of gravity to 33rd Street"

Architect Rem Koolhaas, executive director Ximena Caminos, architect Shohei Shigematsu, financier Len Blavatnick, Miami Beach mayor Phillip Levine, and Alan Faena Monday at the opening of Faena Forum on Miami Beach

There were lots of civic and development glitterati and mutual congratulations for the official opening of the Faena Forum on Monday night, the centerpiece of the cultural program at the Faena District Miami Beach on Collins Avenue. Musicians from the New World Symphony played a grandiose fanfare as Alan Faena, billionaire backer Len Blavatnick, Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine, Forum executive director Ximena Caminos, and architects Rem Koolhaas and Shohei Shigematsu lined up across the stairway of the column-shaped Forum to greet the champagne-sipping crowd.

"I feel like the mayor in the Wizard of Oz," said Levine, referring to his pride in helping convert what people involved in the Faena project keep calling an "empty" area (and not, apparently, to Alan Faena's Dorothy-esque glittering gold shoes) and saying that everyone there was like the munchkins in the movie.

"Creative genius doesn't exist without business genius," said Blavatnick, who was wearing a striped shirt that made him the most under dressed man there (after sweatshirt and sneaker clad composer Arto Lindsay, who has only his artistic brilliance to sustain him.) "But business genius needs creative genius."

Koolhaas thanked his collaborators for "shifting the world's center of gravity to 33rd Street" while Shigematsu, noting the windy evening, assured people that the Forum's facade was hurricane resistant. (No word on whether it was also flood-proof.)

Faena, meanwhile, amply returned Blavatnick's praise. "It's incredible to realize this land was a forgotten land... and only one person realized what it could be," he said. "A visionary - my partner Len. We fought every day to convert that emptiness and darkness into the light." Blavatnick clipped the ribbon, but as the crowd started streaming upwards, they were stymied by a squadron of black-clad Cuban conga dancers (from Cuban artist group Los Carpinteros) dancing backwards down the staircase. Miami Beach's munchkins had to wait a little bit longer before they entered Faena's cultural light.

By Jordan Levin

Incubus lead singer Brandon Boyd in Miami to exhibit work

Brandon Boyd at Scope Art Fair, 2015. Photo: Justin Wysong

Brandon Boyd is best known as the lead singer and lyricist of internationally recognized rock band, Incubus. But off stage, Boyd is also an accomplished visual artist and the author of three books: White Fluffy Clouds (2003), From the Murks of the Sultry Abyss (2007), and So The Echo, (2013). In other words, he is a true arteeest. He has shown his visual work extensively on an international platform and will participate in Art Week Miami for his second year, this time exhibiting with Los Angeles gallery KM Fine Arts at Art Miami. Brandon will be present at the fair intermittently throughout the week and will also have a book signing at MANA Contemporary, 318 NW 23rd St. in Wynwood in conjunction with 1xRun on Saturday, at 3 p.m. December 3 . It’s open to the public. 

Lesley Abravanel

Raul and Mily De Molina Celebrate Art Basel in Key Biscayne

TV personality and art collector Raul De Molina and his wife Mily De Molina hosted their annual party in honor of Art Basel at their home in Key Biscayne.

Guest included baseball slugger Sammy Sosa, Cuban artist Rachel Valdes, Univision anchor Maria Elena Salinas, Latin Grammy President Gabriel Abaroa, South Beach Wine & Food Festival founder Lee Brian Schrager, Lili Estefan, art collector's Robert and Dianne Moss

Sammy Sosa, Cuban Artist Rachel Valdes, Raul De Molina (photo by Manny Hernandez)

Mili De Molina with Dianne and Robert Moss.

​Photos by ​
Manny Hernandez
​ / Manny of Miami​


Opening Night of "Cotto Al Dente" by Italian Photographer Dido Fontana at Butter Gallery in West of Wynwood

Butter Gallery, in collaboration with Golab Agency and Pixarprinting, presented works by Italian Photographer Dido Fontana. Solo exhibition titled, "Cotto Al Dente" runs through Miami Art Week.

Francisco De La Torre, owner and curator of Butter Gallery, says "This exhibit establishes creative exchanges and international visibility for both the Italy-based photographer Dido and our gallery."

Butter Gallery is located at 2930 NW 7th Ave, West of Wynwood.

​Photo by ​
Manny Hernandez/MannyofMiami​

Art Basel: New hotspot Brickell City Centre hosts musical art week kickoff

"Gossip Girl" star and former Blake Lively paramour Penn Badgley, front man for Brooklyn band MOTHXR, helped kick off Miami Art Week Monday night with an exhilarating, well-received performance on the Miami Avenue bridge upstairs at Brickell City Centre, the astonishing new behemoth of luxury shopping at the foot of Calle Ocho. 

The concert was part of the new collaboration between the multi-block, multi-use structure and United Talent Agency, which will handle its musical entertainment.

Kendall Hamersly

What's happening Tuesday at Miami Art Week

Art Week 2016 is gearing up. For your November 29 datebook:

9 a.m. Opening
of “Progressive Praxis” exhibition. De la Cruz Collection,
23 Northeast 41st Street, Design District. delacruzcollection.org.

Scope Miami Beach fair opens. 801 Ocean Drive, Miami
. scope-art.com.
p.m., 9 p.m.
Alexis Gideon’s “The Comet and the Glacier” video opera
and live performance. 3852 North Miami Avenue, Design District. See website
for other performance times and dates: locustprojects.org.

11 p.m.
Wynwood Walls’ “Fear Less,” unveiling of 12 new murals. 2520
Northwest Second Avenue, Wynwood. thewynwoodwalls.com.

What's that head growing out of Bayfront Park?

It's not actually an alien or even a moia. It's Jaume Plensa's "Looking Into My Dreams, Awilda," a 2012 sculpture made of stainless steel, polyester resin and marble dust that measures almost 40 feet tall.

The work was purchased by Miami developer Jorge Perez. Installation at the namesake Perez Art Museum Miami in downtown started over the weekend. The "head" will be on display for two years at PAMM before moving to the Auberge Miami residence at Biscayne and 14th street. But it will only be on loan there; eventually it, and the rest of Perez's personal collection, will return to PAMM.  

Jane Wooldridge


Italian designer Gaetano Pesce celebrated at the Setai

Guest included famed artist Chuck Close, Jean Nouvel, Design Miami's Rodman Primack, Bass Museum's Silvia Karman Cubina, Michelle Oka Doner, designer Niki Haas and Sir Norman Rosenthal.

Jean Nouvel and Gaetano Pesce

Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn and Chuck Close

Photos by Manny Hernandez

Conception Art Fair hosts exhibit of former mob henchman's work inside a solitary confinement cell

What does a former mafia henchman do while he’s sentenced to
several years in solitary confinement at a super-max underground prison? In the
case of Sammy “The Bull” Gravano, you spend the lonely days nurturing the seeds
of creativity. Gravano, who was mob boss John Gotti’s right hand man, spent
much of his time drawing with charcoal on paper. Turns out he wasn’t half

Gravano’s work will be on display at Conception Art Fair in
an exhibit entitled “solitary,” which sends visitors on a mission to find the
hidden exhibit’s entrance, which they must later gain access to from the
attendant Prison Guard. The secluded exhibit features a series of drawings that
show how Gravano channeled that hand-eye coordination he used for hits into drawings that emphasize his deep respect for Native American spirituality. 

From killer to artist, check out Gravano's work at Conception Art Fair. 
Conception Art Fair is open noon-6 p.m. Friday-Sunday at 31
NW 23rd St., Miami. Tickets available at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/conception-art-fair-miami-2016-tickets-29463277456




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