Material Quantity: 13 Engaging Works Spotted at Art Basel Miami Beach

MIAMI—Wandering from booth to booth at Art Basel Miami Beach last week, a couple of trends were apparent. Increasingly, contemporary artists are finding inspiration in quantity and interesting, unexpected materials. From an office chair composed of rubber to dozens of crutches made of silicone and one of Ernesto Neto’s signature works created with nylon “pantyhose,” examples were evident at countless galleries exhibiting at the fair. Arts Observer captured several such engaging works which are featured below.

All photos © Arts Observer

“Untitled,” 1977 (oil on aluminum) by Gunther Forg at Galerie Max Hetzler of Berlin.

“Untitled (Zwerg von Canone),” 1996 (concrete, wood, steel) by Martin Kippenberger at David Nolan Gallery of New York.

“Untitled,” 1968 (black and white wool, rope and wood) by Jannis Kounellis at Galerie Karsten Greve of Cologne, Germany.

“Untitled,” 2012 (clay, paint wooden shelf) by David Adamo at Ibid Projects of London.

Adamo’s series of 119 clay works replicates used rubber erasers. His work is on exhibit at Ibid through Jan. 12, 2013.

“Life Crawl,” 2000 (polyamide, cotton, nylon and sand) by Ernesto Neto at Galeria Fortes Vilaca of Sao Paulo.

“Over One Thousand Individual Works,” 1989 (enamel on hydrocal) by Allan Mccollum at Petzel Gallery of New York.

“Untitled,” 2006/7 (beeswax and wood) by Wolfgang Laib at Buchmann Galerie of Berlin.

Composed of old wood beams, the rack holds nine triangular forms handmade of beeswax that, according to the gallery, together represent the landscape of the pollen mountains. A solo exhibit of Laib’s work will be on view at MoMA in New York in next month.

Detail of 2012 “Vampire” series (fabric and fiber fill) by Sterling Ruby at Xavier Hufkens of Brussels.

“Janice, Tracy, Sarah, Kristin, Joan, Leslie, Jane, Michelle, Cindy, Laura, Mommy, Karissa, Kristina, Candice, Darcy, Beth, Felicia, Mona, Rose, Ashley, Helen, Pam, Catherine, Heather, Tammy, Kim, Margaret, Baby, Janelle, Debbie, Steph, Justine, Ruth, Her, Brittany, Trish, Gretchen, Melissa, Jesse, Olympia, Daisy, Aunt Mary, Remy, Jane, Crissy, Megan, Carol, Luann,” 2012 (silicone, charcoal, dirt, hair) by Kaari Upson at Massimo De Carlo of Milan/London.

“Narcissus Garden,” 2004 (500 stainless steel balls) by Yayoi Kusama at Robert Miller Gallery of New York.

“Brad,” 2012 (woodburytype, edition of 10) three distict portrits from a series of “Woodburytypes” of figures such as Brad Pitt, Kate Moss and Willem Dafoe by Chuck Close at Two Palms of New York.

“Task Chair,” 2009 (rubber) by Jeanne Silverthorne at McKee Gallery of New York.

A “Please do not sit” sign was on display next to the rubber office chair.

“Thrown Out of Drama School,” 2008 (tweed, toweling, cotton, silk, metal, leather, polyfill, plastic) by Cosimo Von Bonin at Petzel Gallery of New York.

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