Fashion ruled at Art Basel Miami Beach this week, as patrons pranced through the exhibit halls, adorned in bright colors, vivid prints, and striking combinations of black and white.
In sync with the art, many wealthy collectors at the fair’s VIP Preview on Wednesday donned their most eye-catchingly colorful and whimsical designer duds, from head to — particularly — toe. Their apparel, culled from all over the world, mirrored the international scene.
Ann Soh Woods, an art collector from Los Angeles, stood out in a red lip-print Alice + Olivia dress she bought in New York, with Repetto yellow pumps purchased in Paris. She said she picked her apparel to reflect her surroundings.
“I think of Miami as fun, happy, joyous,” she said.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Miami Herald
Eva and Adele, artists from Berlin who attend Art Basel Miami Beach every year, chose matching red skirts, with white corseted tops, all handmade in Berlin, and accessorized with red pumps and red purses.
“We decided to make a bouquet of flowers,” Adele said, pointing to the decorations on her outfit.
Anita Pariente, 55, of Paris, picked Missoni’s swirls of reds, oranges, greens and yellows, for her dress and jacket. She coupled the apparel with a bright Etro scarf, multi-color Valentino purse, and red Prada shoes.
Adriana Kertzer, 35, a curatorial assistant at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, wore bright, wearable art: a pink dress with a print of artwork that she bought online at Printallover.me.
Elisa Ibanez, 33, of Santiago, Chile, whose family owns the Explora Lodge in Patagonia, wore a kaleidoscopic printed caftan by NEON, a Brazilian line by Dudu Bertholini, that she bought in Sao Paulo.
Nearby, Caroline Johnson, 31, of Basel, donned an abstract printed dress by Zara, bought in Barcelona.
And Julie Baumgartner, a staff writer at New York Magazine, combined multi-colored prints with a green floral Zara skirt she bought in Madrid, a black flowered Forever 21 top she got in New York and a yellow Brunello Cucinelli sweater she “stole” from her mother.
“I’m a huge fan of mixing power prints and florals,” said Baumgardner, 30.
Yellow today and green tomorrow
Yellow dominated Herbert Rosenfeld’s outfit: an original Polo shirt from Argentina, paired with yellow Ralph Lauren pants and yellow Reebok sneakers.
“If it’s a sunny day, I pick yellow. Yesterday it was red. Tomorrow it may be green,” said Rosenfeld, who is a lecturer in arts and economics at Harvard University, and lives on Fisher Island and in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Norman Stone, a psychologist from San Francisco, who is also head of the W. Clement & Jesse V. Stone Foundation, stood out in a colorful jacket he bought at a market in New York, a printed Etro shirt, Alexander McQueen pants and Gucci silver sneakers.
“A rich guy’s trainers,” he joked.
His wife, Norah Stone, a lawyer, looked artsy in a long, mod Jacquemus La Femme Enfant top purchased at Opening Ceremony in New York.
And supermodel Elle Macpherson glided through the Basel exhibits in a Marques Almeida jacket, Velvet top and skirt by Sea, paired with Sophia Webster lace-up sandals, Fendi sunglasses and a Christian Louboutin bag.
Shoes grab attention
Eye-catching footwear directed attention to the floor at the Miami Beach Convention Center. Miamian Livia Leao’s pink, black, white and red polka-dotted Valentino booties jived with the art, as did Londoner Francesca Price’s Giuseppe Zanotti brightly beaded sandals.
New York artist Sam Heydt’s whimsical, orange and green Irregular Choice pumps that she bought in Venice, Italy, caused a stir among passersby.
Merging fun and comfort, Rose Dergan of New York donned flat Loeffler Randall gold sandals.
Ana Atencio of Miami, also chose flats: Stuart Weitzman reptile-print gladiator sandals. Her grandmother, Sagrario Perez-Soto, of Las Nubes, Costa Rica, chose white Miu Miu sneakers with silver tips.
Alexis Sanfield, owner of Luna Star Cafe in North Miami, went for Luchesse cowboy boots she bought in Nashville. Patricia Monk of Miami wore Stella McCartney thick platform shoes she bought in New York. And interior designer Lauren McGrath donned low-heeled Chanel sandals she bought at Barney’s in New York.
“They’re so comfortable, and it’s a nice heel to wear to work and events — not too high,” said McGrath, 29, of New York, who wrote the book Good Bones, Great Pieces: The Seven Essential Pieces to Carry You Through a Lifetime. “They keep you stable.”
Some art enthusiasts wore apparel they designed or crafted themselves. Catherine Murray, an insurance broker and art collector from London, topped her black lace Body Frock dress with a purple hat of her own design.
Even New York-based designer Vera Wang wore Simply Vera Vera Wang for Kohl’s leggings, topped with a Rick Owens t-shirt, a black leather Commes des Garcon harness, a black Prada quilted handbag and Mykita sunglasses.
“I love art. I’m always affected by it. I’m always influenced by it,” said Wang, of New York. “And I also buy it.”
Daniel Chimowitz, a fashion and textile designer from San Francisco called himself “a walking canvas,” in his own hand-painted jacket, tie, and pants. On his feet: Jeremy Scott for adidas shoes — one silver, and the other gold.
“I am all into bringing art from the galleries to the street,” said Chimowitz, 37. “Only the people who come to Art Basel can see the art. But when I am on the street, I open the art world to everyone.”
Artist Danna Weiss of Venice Beach, California, wore a long dress she made, paired with vintage American Indian jewelry and over-the-knee black leather boots. She sashayed by with her father, Donald Weiss, a professor of entrepreneurship at Columbia University in New York, who wore a black and white striped jacket by Polo by Ralph Lauren, a white textured shirt and jeans by Zegna and Allen Edmonds loafers.
Gottweis Dunja, 38, who lives in Basel, also paired black and white: a black perforated leather Emerson Thorpe top, white H&M skirt, and black and white Nicholas Kirkwood + Roksanda Ilincic suede and patent-leather bow-tied boots.
Others wore clothing that carried a special meaning. Pavel Zoubok, 44, who has a gallery in New York that specializes in collage art, wore a Comme des Garcon collage-print shirt. He collects such shirts, which have become his “uniform,” he said.
And Henrique Faria, who owns galleries in New York and Buenos Aires, wore a green silk caftan he bought in New Delhi, with green jeans he bought in Bogota and orange sandals he had tailor made in Buenos Aires.
“Green is hope,” he said, citing the need for change in his native Venezuela.
Juxtaposed against eye-popping color, white also summoned attention. Susanne Birbragher of Miami, the associate publisher of Art Nexus Magazine and head of the marketing firm Liaisons, wore a white Burberry dress and Alexandre Birman heels, coupled with Uzca earrings, an Audemars Piguet watch and a Cartier bracelet.
Kitzia Goodman, 62, of Chicago and Aspen, also chose white: a J. Mendel ensemble she bought at Barneys in New York. She accessorized it with silver Dolce and Gabbana sandals purchased in Dubai, a white Dior purse she bought in Los Angeles, and a Cartier watch and diamond ring.
“It’s light, it’s airy, and I feel crisp and fresh,” she said of her color choice. “I don’t clash with the art.”
Her husband, Richard Goodman, 58, wore an Etro shirt, Zegna pants and Nicholas Kirkwood shoes.
Friends Martin Maguss, 58, and Jeff Dauber, 48, of San Francisco, mixed black and white patterns, creating walking art. Maguss wore a bold Basquiat by Supreme shirt with black Levis, and carried a black Y-3 bag.
Dauber donned a t-shirt by Alexander McQueen, with Kenzo tiger pants and gray John Varvatos boots.
“As my husband says,” said Dauber, “‘This is the only place where your clothes actually make sense.’”