In 1974, Art Basel wasn't the only fledgling contemporary art fair to emerge in Europe. Around the same time, the Fair of Contemporary Art was held at the site of the old Bastille in the center of Paris. It was since renamed International Contemporary Art Fair (commonly referred to as FIAC) and was moved into its current abode at the Grand Palais. It wasn't until 1976 that FIAC was considered a groundbreaking contemporary art fair, as it began to attract American galleries. Photography was introduced as a medium for the fair in 1982, with a dedicated exhibition space at the fairgrounds. The so-called 'video cube' was unveiled in 2001, highlighting young artists specializing in new media.
On a hot Tuesday evening in August, a crowd of curious, luminous Miami creatives gathered on the rooftop of the Garden Building in the Miami Design District to see and listen. The topic? Collisions. The first thought might be traffic accidents; interestingly, only one of the speakers, Elsa Roberts of the Pedestrian Safety Walk Project, spoke about actual accidents occurring between cars and people in metropolitan Miami (she subsequently invited the audience to learn more about the behaviors of poor drivers in crosswalks and the rights of pedestrians). But overall, the thrust of Pecha Kucha Miami's Design to Collide was to seamlessly integrate concepts of contemporary art and visual theory, architectural and applied design, interracial relationships and quantum physics, all in 5 individual presentations of 20 slides each, for 20 seconds each.
Performance art (or internationally-known simply as Performance) is quickly becoming a visual arts medium vitally important to the cultural landscape in Miami. There are crescendoes of performance artists (including those based in Miami) winning statewide and national grants, as well as coveted spots in international visual arts residency programs.