“Design-art” has been the it word (or words) so far this year (years even?), as you might remember us pointing out a handful of times. But, as a rule, we don’t make any concrete decisions about anything until we’ve read Alice Rawsthorn‘s opinions on them. Turns out, we’re pretty fortunate, as she’s just written a new column for the International Herald Tribune about “design-art.” While she doesn’t love it so much, and lays out a few choice critiques on why “art” should be “art” and “design” be “design,” she eventually has to concede that, while she might not go along with all that’s happening right now, it’s doing big, big business within the art industry, so it’s foolish not to at least take a look at it. So Rawsthorn goes on a world tour, talking about all the various “design-art” events, starting, of course, with the biggest of the big, Design Miami/Basel, and finding what’s what in this year’s scene:
The highlights of this week’s Design Miami/ Basel will be the new work commissioned by galleries like Moss and Contrasts in Shanghai. Moss is showing objects by the Dutch duo Studio Job, and Contrasts new pieces by fellow Dutch designers Maarten Baas and Studio Makkink & Bey, and China’s Shao Fan. The rest of the fair will be dominated by the modern and contemporary furniture sold by the secondary dealers (so-called because they didn’t commission it) who aren’t allowed to participate in prestigious art fairs, such as Art Basel and Frieze in London. Their presence is one reason why Galerie Kreo in Paris, one of Europe’s most important primary design dealers, has pulled out of Design Miami/ Basel and other international design fairs.