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December 04, 2013

Artpocalypse Now: Art Basel brings traffic, crowds & celebrities

"At Art Basel, even the traffic is pretentious," tweeted sage Miami filmmaker Billy Corben. With up to two hour waits to get into the Perez Art Museum, a Miami Heat game and grotesque gridlock, it's no wonder a European name-tagged Art Basel visitor was overheard saying, "F*ck it. I'm going to Disney World." If you were a celebrity, however, gridlock was hardly an issue and had LeBron James not been busted, we are certain that some celebs would even have had a police escort to mow them through the traffic. Sort of like Cindy Crawford did at her eponymous Art Miami lounge where she had a Rooms-to-Go collection of security men to whisk her through the cluster*uck. At any rate, what follows is our constantly updated Art Basel celebrity blotter to remind you that, nope, celebs are not just like us.


And the award for the first Art Basel celebrity sighting goes to Val Kilmer, an ABMB regular and art aficionado who was seen Monday night milling around the UNTITLED. fair where was also the first customer at the Fratelli Lyon pop-up restaurant. Here he is pictured with Marina Abramović', 67-yr-old grandmother of performance art, whose 3D vagina is on display from 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. through Art Basel at the Young Arts campus.


Pharrell stopped by the colette art drive-thru at Alchemist on its opening day. The art drive-thru installed on the 5th floor of the Herzog & de Meuron Carpark at 1111 Lincoln Road is a temporary retail experience brought to life by the visionary Paris retailer colette and Miami Beach's Alchemist. In addition to stocking a veritable who's who of artists and designers from all over the world exclusively during Art Basel, the art drive-thru is selling Pharrell designed product. Yup. The singer collaborated with Moncler on a range of sunglasses (retailing for $595) and a "bullet proof" style vest (retailing for $1495). Nothing blurred about those lines.
The aforementioned Cindy Crawford, here with her husband Rande Gerber, kicked off Art Week at Art Miami's CC Lounge schmoozing with 'anonymous' Swedish graffiti artist Herr Nilsson. Crawford swooned over Herr's graffiti depiction of Winnie the Pooh and confessed interest in purchasing the piece of her favorite Disney character. Meanwhile, as crowds aged and grayed on line at the Perez Art Museum, Crawford only seemed to get younger. (Photo/Getty Images)
The supermodel conveniently arrived to the festivities in the all-new Maserati Quattroporte GTS--one of many fancy car sponsors hoping to piggyback off Basel's big bucks. (Photo/Getty Images)
Later that night, well known  LA-based artist Gregory Siff, had dinner at a table next to Crawford and Gerber at Katsuya at SLS Hotel South. The restaurant commissioned Siff to paint 3 exclusive painting of geishas, one of which he gifted to Crawford after she expressed her admiration for them.
On Wednesday, Crawford was doing the brand ambassador thing at OMEGA's newly expanded Aventura store, where she said  “Miami has always been one of the liveliest and most influential markets in America, so it definitely makes sense for OMEGA to increase its presence here.”

Best Buddies International and The Brant Foundation hosted the Best Buddies Art + Friendship Auction at Ugo Columbo’s manse to benefit Best Buddies, raising nearly $1 million for Anthony Kennedy Shriver's charity. Though Leonardo DiCaprio was there with a small crew that included actor Ethan Suplee, Val Kilmer was also there and, for that, we bestow him with a second award: the early, dubious honor of Art Basel's most ubiquitous bold facer who should not be confused with Beau Bridges.

It's not art, but: On Tuesday afternoon, A-Rod was the lone man sitting at at table at Mr Chow of what our spy says were  'very friendly to each other' women, including Martina Navratilova, whose wife was sitting on her lap.


Just like old times when Sean Puffy Puff Daddy P. Diddy Do Wah was Miami's ubiquitous, here he is above, pictured at the First Choice Collectors Preview at Art Basel Miami Beach with the name and gallerist behind Walter Otero Contemporary Art.


Roger Dubuis CEO Jean-Marc Pontroué and so-called “Friend of the Brand,” Gerard Butler, threw a private dinner Wednesday at a W South Beach private residence in “partnership” with Dom Pérignon. Guests got to drool over the watch that costs more than most crashers make in a year, the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor, alongside Jeff Koons’ designed Limited Edition Dom Perignon bottles. Among the invitees: Eva Longoria, Serena Williams and Karolina Kurkova. Following the dinner NY-based DJ Ms Nix hit the turntables—as did Butler— for the Dom-soaked after party. (Photo/Seth Browarnik, World Red Eye)   


So this is what Art Basel's come to. Two years ago we had Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Last year it was Demi Moore channeling her inner teen chasing after a young art heir. This year it's this pop cultural cataract known as Kimye, seen here at the DuJour Magazine cocktail party Wednesday night, hosted by Dee and Tommy Hilfiger, Tony Shafrazzi and Eyal Lalo, honoring artist Mark Quinn. Also seen in the crowd: Lionel Richie, also seen at the Riviera on Thursday afternoon, and Adrian Grenier.  Photo by Getty Images and Kardashian dress by Proenza Schouler.

Kanye West_Jacques Herzog_Hans Ulrich Obrist

Meanwhile, before that big appearance,architecture giant Jacques Herzog and West participated in a discussion moderated by Serpentine Gallery Co-Director of Exhibitions and Programs, Hans Ulrich Obrist. PT Barnum would have been proud. West, who admitted to being a "student of art," channeled Confucius, saying, "“Don’t be afraid to ask questions to a person who’s an expert.” Does that include experts who criticize his music? Photo of West and the Funky Bunch by Getty.

1-Kendrick Lamar

Across the causeway, Belvedere Vodka kicked off its own corporate thing Wednesday with a big party at the Mana Wynwood Art Gallery featuring hip hop artist Kendrick Lamar, who performed
hits including "Poetic Justice", "Swimming Pools" and "Don't Kill My Vibe" for a crowd that included some Real Housewives of Miami. Makes you thirsty for some Belvedere art, doesn't it?


Basel, mix the bourgeoisie and the rebels: Russell Simmons, joined by his brother, painter Danny Simmons, and former Real Housewives of New York City's Jill Zarin, attended a dinner fundraiser for Penn Medicine at UPENN sponsored by Christofle fine silver at the house of Allison and Chip Brady.  Upon leaving the party, Simmons checked out the goody bag of a key chain and a candle by Christolfe, and Prince Reigns hair products, to which he joking said, "Hair stuff?  You want me to take a bag of hair stuff?"  Then he looked at the bag again, and said, "It looks cool, I'll take it."


Now here's some real star power. China's biggest star, Maggie Cheung, known as that nation's Meryl Streep, arrived from Beijing on Wednesday night as a special guest of Audemars Piguet watches, a first time Art Basel sponsor. Cheung visited the brand's booth at the Collectors' Lounge at the Convention Center.  After touring the watches and visiting with a watchmaker she did a series of interviews. Also paying visits to the Audemars Piguet booth were Serena Williams, Nicole Richie and PGA great Sir Nick Faldo. Cheung and Richie also attended a private dinner held Thursday night in the Kolkoz designed chalet installed at Miami Marine Stadium. Richie brought a special guest….. Her dad Lionel.  (Photo/World Red Eye)

Art Branding: Ketel One Vodka debuted De Nolet, an installation of the brand's distillery in Holland at a party on NW 24th St. Thursday co-hosted by photographer Randall Slavin, who unveiled never before seen photography including images of Zoe Saldana, Eva Longoria, Charlize Theron, Ben Stiller and more. Eva Longoria came by with new boyfriend Antonio Baston, arriving in a silver Ferrari which, to our knowledge, did not have a police escort. Kevin Spacey also swung by and embraced Longoria as soon as he saw her. (Photo/Getty)

The silver Ferrari brings up a colorful conversation we had with a well known artist Thursday at his exhibit in the Design District. Remarking on how poorly he thought Miami was handling the traffic, the crowds and Art Basel in general, he said, "Miami's a freak show; it's like freakin' Egypt. I just want to toss tomatoes on the guys driving Maseratis." The artist continued on his rant, until I asked him if he knew anyone viewing his art and he said no, not one of "These freaks," adding, "just bring me some collectors." Aaah, Art Basel.  1

In honor of its “Never stop. Never settle.” photo series, Hennessy took over the Pulse Art Fair Thursday, where Nas, who performed at the Ice Palace earlier, and Busta Rhymes were spotted. (Photo/KirillWasHere)


Lindsay Lohan was holed up earlier on Thursday in a manse on Star Island. She emerged to attend her pal Domingo Zapata's "The Art of Bullfighting" at Cipriani Downtown Miami. Also there: actor and artist Jordi Olla, artist Mr. Doolittle and, er, Jeremy Shockey. (Image/Graylock Photo)


Pamela Anderson celebrated artist Raphael Mazzucco Thursday at the Rose Bar at the Delano where rapper Theophilus London jumped in the DJ booth for a special surprise set to end the night. While many marveled at the artist, more were marveling at Anderson's sassy, classy new look. Anderson, we're told, was the life of the party, saying "I'm so pleased to have been a part of Raphael's first show . . . I'm so proud of his transition into a renowed cutting edge artist." And we're so proud of her transition into a renowned pixie cut.  


You know Art Basel's coming to a halt when the only celebrity names being dropped are those you have to Google, repeats and former cast members of the Real Housewives franchise. At any rate, Haute Living and Hublot celebrated The Art of Fusion celebrated artist Hebru Brantley. Brantley wowed guests with an art installation featuring over 35 of his works curated by Swizz Beatz, also known as Mr. Alicia Keys, whow as not there. The evening featured a dinner for 60 guests including Lenny KravitzSerena Williams, Eva Longoria and new boyfriend Jose Antonio Baston. (Photo/Alex Tamargo/Getty Images)


Following some made-for-TMZ scandal involving their younger brother allegedly being hit in the face on purpose by Lindsay Lohan's team,  Paris and Nicky Hilton, along with their oily heir pal Brandon Davis, were seen early Saturday morning strolling into the 1 OAK temporary club at the Delano in with a massive entourage. The sisters, keeping to themselves and their clique, were seen sipping Dom Perignon and dancing for an hour before heading across the street to Rec Room where Paris ran into her friend Adrian Grenier.



Following Grenier’s memorable karaoke performance of Cindy Lauper’s Girls Just Want to Have Fun at Rec Room’s Chez Andre pop-up Thursday night, the arty Entourage star returned for a second night of fun. After settling at his table in front of the karaoke stage, Grenier went outside to escort in a beautiful blonde model that he was very excited to see. This mystery blonde seemed to have captured his attention dancing with him all night while he spun her around singing along to Van Morrison’s Brown Eyed Girl. Enter the Hilton Sisters. Blah blah blah. More interestingly, one would would have expected to hear "Margaritaville" from Savannah  (daughter of Jimmy) Buffett, but she got on stage to sing The Clash's  "Should I Stay or Should I Go" instead.


(Dr. Maggie Manrara hanging on to Grenier Saturday in the Convention Center lobby)


Meanwhile, lest you think it was all over by Sunday at , say, 6 a.m., we awoke to a barrage of emails saying Lindsay Lohan was at Club Space, hiding under a hoodie. Guess that hoodie didn't do much for you, huh, LiLo?  Earlier in the night she stopped into Mansion. To quote our pal Matt Hirschenbein, " If I'm a recovering drug addict, going to Space would be the equivalent of a nympho going to a whorehouse."

Here she is, below, posing sans hoodie at the Shore Club. Photos by Aaron Davidson/Getty Images.




Rose McGowan was playing the part of adoring wife while at Art Basel. McGowan’s husband, Davey Detail, part of art duo Cyrcle, was exhibiting several pieces at the fair. “Art Basel is amazing, it’s my first time here,” McGowan said, relaxing in Architectural Digest’s AD Oasis at the Royal James Palm Hotel. Looking around the colorful VIP lounge, McGowan mentioned that her favorite room in her house is her bedroom—because all the furniture is painted in her favorite shade of nail polish.