BY MARK KEAST

As I wrote nine years ago when I arrived there, Art Basel in Miami Beach, running Dec. 5-8, is a premiere North America art festival for modern, contemporary art, where more than 70,000 art lovers from around the world flock to take in work from over 250 of the world’s leading galleries.

But it’s not like the art collectors and enthusiasts weren’t there before the art festival arrived in Miami in 2002 – this event just brought them all to the surface (main image, courtesy Art Basel)

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Basel, Switzerland, was the first in the series, held every June, showcasing over 4,000 works of art. Basel also holds festivals in Buenos Aires, in September, and Hong Kong, scheduled for March of next year (we will have to wait and see what the impact of ongoing government protests will be on this event).

Art Basel in Miami Beach offers something fantastic that goes beyond the art fare, though – people watching, a landscape of beauty and oddness and colour that augments the entire experience. For years we have worked with celebrated Toronto photographer Yuri Dojc. One of Yuri’s regular assignments has been traveling to Art Basel in Miami, to capture not only the art, but also the people and personalities from all over the world who gather there.

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There is a richness to that as well, and Yuri is one of the few able to capture that. Below are a few samples of his work, from past shows. Check out his website for more. Look for coverage from this year’s show in the coming weeks.

Below is the original “Haute Spot” article from nine years ago, as well.