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The History of Miami Art Week

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    Since debuting in the U.S. in 2002, Miami Art Week has become one of the most anticipated annual events for art lovers throughout the world. 2023 will mark its 21st year delighting artists and visitors in the glamorous city of Miami.

    What makes this event stand out is its diverse array of contributing artists, across a multidisciplinary array of mediums. While the main focus is contemporary art, you’ll find every art form imaginable — including painting, sculpture, photography, performance art and large installations.

    In addition, Miami Art Week has become a hub for networking within the art world. It attracts influential curators, collectors and artists who are given a global platform to see and be seen. The event fosters opportunities for education and collaboration through a program of talks, panel discussions, curated exhibitions and conversations.

    In this article we’ll explore the history and the cultural impact that Miami Art week has had over the years, as well as a few things you can expect in 2023.

    How Miami Art Week began

    The inaugural art fair began in Basel, Switzerland in 1970, dreamed up by three Swiss gallery owners who wanted to cultivate a renewed excitement within the art world. They wanted to host a fair that would bring together artists, buyers and collectors.

    The first fair was a huge hit, drawing more than 16,000 attendees. They soon realized there was an opportunity to expand the event internationally. Organizers began canvassing top destinations, determined to find the ideal location to expand their footprint. Ultimately, Miami was chosen for its decidedly multicultural vibe, the excitement and funding from local leaders and ideal location within Northern America.

    In 2002, Miami Art Week debuted with much success, ushering in a new era of devotion to global contemporary art.

    Miami Art Week’s evolution over the years

    The evolution of Miami Art Week is really a story about the evolution of the city itself. Over the past few decades, Miami has transformed into an upscale, international destination known for its enviable weather, turquoise beaches, award-winning food and signature Latin American flare. But most notably, it’s now associated with art, architecture and design. With this transformation came an investment in a wide range of art spaces and galleries.

    In the beginning, Miami Art Week was fueled by the generosity of private collectors, who invited guests into their homes to view their shows every December. These collectors, along with city leaders, understood the value this event could bring to Miami economically, and began finding funding for public museums and educational institutions. Today, you’ll find premiere spaces such as the Miami Design District, Wynwood and Downtown Miami, Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) and the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA).

    Through these investments over the years, Miami made a name for itself in contemporary art, leading to an even bigger interest in the annual Art Week. It’s now a sprawling, multi-location affair throughout the city drawing international acclaim. The impact of which economists believe could have an estimated $400 million annually for the city of Miami.

    Miami Art Week 2023

    Miami Art Week 2023 will kick off with the VIP Preview on Tuesday, December 5th before opening to the public on Wednesday, December 6th through Sunday, December 10th at the Miami Convention Center.

    You’ll see a large base of collectors, curators, art dealers, buyers, journalists and both established and up-and-coming artists in attendance. And as always, world-class galleries will be open and selling contemporary, modern, classic and pop works from all over the world. In addition, well-known faces such as Leonardi DiCaprio, Pharrell, Martha Stewart and Venus Williams have also known to be in attendance, so you can expect to see plenty of celebrities over the course of the weekend.

    Satellite fairs and other events during Miami Art Week

    Plan to venture well beyond the convention center to check out the following popular satellite events across the city:

    • Art Miami
    • Art Basel Miami Beach
    • Aqua Art Miami
    • CONTEXT Art Miami
    • Design Miami
    • Fridge Art Fair
    • INK Miami Art Fair
    • Miami River Art Fair
    • NADA/New Art Dealers Alliance
    • Pinta Miami
    • Prizm Art Fair
    • Red Dot Miami
    • SATELLITE Art Show
    • SCOPE Miami Beach
    • Spectrum Miami
    • UNTITLED, Art

    In summary

    Visitors to Miami Art Week can explore an entire city brimming with every kind of art you can imagine. Discover both established and emerging artists who are sure to inspire. Whether you’re an experienced collector or brand new to the world of art, this is an event you don’t want to miss.

    If you’re a Chase Sapphire Reserve® cardmember, you can make the most of your experience in Miami by accessing events inside the much-anticipated Sapphire Lounge at Loews Miami Beach. There you’ll enjoy curated dining, happy hour cocktail events plus parties with live A-list entertainment! Some activities, including entertainment, will require a pre-purchased ticket.

    Don’t have a Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card yet? Learn more and apply here.

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