Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Lifestyling®’s Top Ten of 2011

Sometimes it’s truly difficult for me to choose the artist that I love the most or single out one of my projects or experiences as “the best”.  Particularly, since I get to live a creative life and pretty much give shape and direction to my brand, business and projects, I must say that I approach every day expecting “the best” and most of the time, it turns out to be so. 

This year, however, I feel that many of my dreams have crystallized and that I have paved the way (with the help of extraordinary team members, staff, supporters, family and friends) for an amazing 2012 and many more years ahead.
With a lot of trouble, and because I’m kind of like an editor/curator, I picked my top 10 events of 2011 and summarized them below:

1. Being featured on Gwyneth Paltrow’s “GOOP”: Gwyneth is an inspirational woman who is nothing but amazing inside and out.  She’s creative, resourceful, smart, honest, nurturing and 100% authentic.  I could not have been more honored or flattered when I had the chance to guest edit her popular blog/newsletter “GOOP” for an entry on “Designing with Contemporary Art”.  It was, overall, an extraordinary experience and the article turned out to be a very comprehensive yet approachable guide on collecting and living with contemporary art.

2. Blogging for What can I say that hasn’t been said about Forbes?  I wrote two articles for them; one on collecting art and one on branding/entrepreneurship and they both went viral on the internet.  Wow!

5. Launching LivinArt™ as a separate division inside Lifestyling® and having had one of 
the top producers of Sotheby’s International Realty sponsor the event in one of the
brokerage’s trophy apartments overlooking Madison Square Park.

6. Interviewing the extraordinary contemporary artist Flavia  Da Rin: Flavia is a fabulous  
sought-after talent who at the same time is humble, sweet, caring and beyond
smart. Featuring her in my blog was an honor and a pleasure. Bravo, Flavia, for the
career you have built!

5. Having one of my projects on the cover of “DCASA” magazine, one of the most prestigious interior design magazines in Brazil (plus an entire eight-page spread inside!)

6. Getting a Thanksgiving feature in Latina Magazine!

7. Having “Frida’s World”, our Frida Kahlo App for kids, selected as one of the top Apps of 2011 by Time Out Magazine in London and also widely endorsed and promoted through social media by the two museums that host the largest collection of Frida Kahlo’s works: The Dolores Olmedo Museum and the Frida Kahlo Museum.

8. Running the “Living with Art” series for SoHo House in NYC: from visiting the studios of some of the coolest and most sought-after artists to getting an installation in a luxury empty apartment in Chelsea, organizing this series and working with the SoHo House people was one of the highlights of 2011.

9. Being widely featured by 85Broads as part of their CEO Roundup, hosting a jam session for them, guest-editing Janet Hanson’s (85Broads founder and CEO) blog and having an event to introduce my company to the networks’ “Power Circle”.

10. Art Basel Miami Beach, 2011: people might criticize AMBM and trash the whole experience: too much partying, too much money, too blingy, too crazy…  The truth is that the art is always amazing, cutting-edge, revelatory or simply beautiful (although some years it pleases my eye more than others) and the parties are optional (hello! I always welcome the opportunity to go to different events, cocktails and parties after a long day walking miles and miles of hallways filled with art); the new fairs are gaining a lot of traction and bringing fresh blood to the art scene, more collectors are opening the doors of their homes for people to enjoy their collections, Miami has changed enormously and the way people are acquiring and experiencing art has taken a very different direction than the way it was 10 years ago. Resisting this change isn’t going to prevent it from happening.
I just want to finish by saying THANK YOU to all my amazing clients, supporters, followers, readers, fans, facebookers, tweets, friends, family etc., for always being there, for pushing me to be better and for contributing to the fulfilling venture that is to take my company to the next level.  Looking forward to an exceptional 2012!

Friday, December 9, 2011


Art Basel Miami Beach - 10th Anniversary and Counting!

The 10th Edition of Art Basel Miami Beach meant a whole lot more than marking the extraordinary fact that a decade has passed and ABMB has grown to be the most important art fair in the world, in one of the most exciting settings for contemporary art.

Blah, Blah, Blah by Mel Bochner. 

 I come every year and find the fair and the surrounding events to be the perfect and sometimes contradictory mix of culture, fantasy, discovery, glam and bling. But what is really the most important accomplishment of these past ten years is what Art Basel has done for Miami as a city, community and now, as an international art center. It has developed into a truly unparalleled conglomerate of new hotels, shops, restaurants, galleries and artist studios that are pulsating and vibrating year-round.

The most famous German couple in the contemporary art world: Eva & Adele

The main fair was nothing short of spectacular. I loved the early vernissage and the opportunity to see and buy art before the best pieces were snatched by frantic collectors who, like many of my clients, have turned art into their most prized investment-- emotionally and financially sound assets that they appreciate and love to live with.

Jonathan Meese's Revolution

Conceptual art was a strong theme that I saw in many of the ABMB exhibiting galleries and some of the ancillary shows like the one at the Cisneros Fontanals Foundation (CIFO) and de la Cruz family’s private collection. Generally, I like and understand conceptual art because I love to fill up blank spaces with my own ideas or even make up interpretations in my mind. However, as someone driven by aesthetic, beauty, colors, symbols and graphics, particularly given the nature of what I do, extreme conceptual art is not my thing.

An entire collection! Photomontage by Martha Rossler

For the first time ABMB offered Art Video, a new section comprised of different features, including artistic short films and videos outside the convention center projected on a giant screen designed by Frank Ghery. The section also featured small pods inside the fair where attendees could sit and wear headphones and experience amazing videos, among which there were collaborations with Gagosian Gallery, White Cube and the Whitney Museum. I think this is a great way for ABMB to introduce video art to the public and also help new collectors get their feet wet (it is not the easiest to collect).

Tracey Emin's Neon from her latest series

In the party realm, I must say that this year's soirees went above and beyond the expected. My favorite parties were the one under an oceanside tent at SoHo Beach House and The Hole Gallery party at the Delano gardens, with the Salem band concert and performance taking place on a stage by the pool (and inside too!). Jeff Deitch threw a MOCA Beach Party at the Raleigh, while Cartier honored Beatriz Milhazes and ArtNexus had its traditional fête, also at SoHo Beach House, complete with a fashion show by the pool. There were so many others; it will be impossible for me to recap them here.

The tent at SoHo Beach House for the party

Michelle Grey from SoHo House and I at the event. (Picture courtesy of Billy Farrel Agency)

ABMB has really changed the contemporary art landscape and the way that many people and collectors experience and buy art. I'm looking forward to the next 10 years and to see art transform people's lives and homes in a positive and impactful way.

In the meantime, here is a list of my standouts:


• Works on canvas by Cuban artist Jose Bedia at Snitzer

• Large-scale and never-before released Keith Haring works on paper at Gladstone Gallery

• Tracey Emin new neon series at Lehmann Maupin

• William Kentridge paper panels at Marian Goodman

• Arturo Herrera collages at Sikkema Jenkins

• Martha Rossler's Photomontage at Mitchell-Innes & Nash

• Simon Evans mixed media works at James Cohan

• Elmgreen & Dragset installation at Emmanuel Perrotin

• Jonathan Meese's large-scale canvas at Contemporary Fine Arts (Berlin)


• Mark Fox's mixed media and collages at Larisa Goldston
• Andrew Schoultz's gold leaf flags at Marx & Zavattero


• Jan Albers's acrylic panels at Van Horn

• Eddy Martinez's canvases at The Hole

• Barb Choit's "I Heart My Attitude Collection" store at the Dumbo Arts Center

• Adam McEwen rabbit sculpture at Cumulus Studios