CONTEMPORARY ART & MUSIC HISTORIAN,
VISUAL ARTIST, DJ & ENTREPRENEUR
Every year Miami becomes the center of the historical event called Art Basel, generally known as Art Week. Memories are made for all that attend, and writers like myself document it furiously, capturing what unfolds. If you are here you become a part the story. Whether you come for the parties or the art. For this edition of #behindbasel were getting the best of both worlds with the perspective from Adrian Loving.
“Basel is sort of a rite of passage for artists, curators, and creatives.”
Over the course of Lovings 20-year career, he has curated art exhibitions and public programming at various museums and cultural institutions; including the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art (NMAFA), The National Portrait Gallery, National Gallery of Art and Corcoran Gallery of Art, amongst many others. His active participation at music festivals, art fairs, and conferences have further developed his unique perspective on contemporary pop-culture and issues of historical importance.
In his most recent project Fade 2 Grey, Loving explores the intersection of androgyny, art, and fashion with a focus on musicians from the 1980s including David Bowie, Grace Jones, and Prince. His continued research has resulted in a series of panel discussions called Shoot to Thrill: Picturing Identity In Underground Dance Music.
His work as a DJ/Entrepreneur led him to perform at renowned events and cultural spaces throughout Washington, DC and abroad, including The White House Correspondent’s Dinner, The National Gallery of Art and Library of Congress to name a few. Each experience synthesizes his love and passion for music in unique ways to create sonic experiences on the dancefloor and in art spaces. His talents for setting a diverse, musical atmosphere at premier events has also taken him to the UK, Malta, Spain, Greece and South Africa.
Loving currently maintains a full-time faculty position as an Instructor of Visual Art, Film and Video at Georgetown Day School in Washington, DC. Prior to his current role, he served as an Adjunct Professor of Art and Graphic Design at the University of Maryland College Park and Howard University.
What was your first Art Basel like?
My first Art Basel was 2010, and I remember going down to write an art review for the Root.com, an African-American news, and politics website under the Washington Post. I was going to so many shows that I didn’t know heads from tails, but It was such a new world for me. I had saturated myself with art, and I was sick of it by Sunday. I flew home tired but happy and inspired. I have been going for at least 7 years now. It’s always exciting to see new art and engage in networking and educating myself with artists. Art fairs are such an integral part of my life.
What are you looking forward to this year?
Art Basel often draws some amazing musical talent during the week and I look forward to seeing and being influenced at unique locations on the beach and in art pop-ups. I don’t have plans to write this year during Basel but I do like to synthesize the visual into the audio as I move from fair to fair. I always like to check out Prizm Art fair and Design Miami. The main fair gets a bit overwhelming, but there is so much to see. Happy hunting!
How would you describe the Miami Art Scene in the context of the world since you travel around and know art history?
Miami has a legit international art scene, outside of the annual Basel fairs. The city supports public art and it is a magnet for international creatives. Since I don’t live in Miami, I don’t have a true sense of the real local players but I have been coming long enough to sense the progress and energy here. I love contemporary art. Sometimes you see a lot of the same type of art down at Basel but once in a while you really find some gold nuggets, even in the art fairs. I love video art and experimental new styles. Basel is a great showcase for the new and different.
What are your tips for the week?
Tip 1: Plan your route and the main events you want to see.
Tip 2: Don’t be too disappointed if you can’t get into seeing what you want.
Tip 3: Be prepared to meet new and cool people.
Friday December 7th, 2018 Keep It Deep Miami + Vagabonds-At-Large present CLASSIC An Evening of Vintage House/Disco and Old-School Hip Hop featuring JUAN MEJIA (Dutchie Music) ANI PHEARCE (Phearce Musica) + Special Performance by: ADORA – – – Midnight to 4am Free Entry – – –more »