Art Basel Miami: Artists Who Stole the Show
Advisory Perspective

Art Basel Miami: Artists Who Stole the Show

By Annabel Downes | Miami, 9 December 2021

This year's edition of Art Basel Miami Beach returned in full swing, with a noticeable emphasis on emerging talent. We discuss below those artists whose works really stole the show.


Amani Lewis, What we do best? we dance! (2021). Acrylic, pastel, glitter, screen print on canvas. 203.2 x 142.2 cm.

Amani Lewis, What we do best? we dance! (2021). Acrylic, pastel, glitter, screen print on canvas. 203.2 x 142.2 cm. Courtesy Salon 94. Photo: Dan Bradica.

Amani Lewis at Salon 94

Baltimore-born Amani Lewis was showing two spectacular works with Salon 94.

Hyper-saturated photographs of their family and Baltimore community are transformed through photo manipulation and an overlay of glitter, acrylic paint, and pastel to interrogate representations of Blackness in the media.

Lewis is currently the subject of a solo exhibition titled Amani Lewis: Nothing Remains the Same at Salon 94's 89th Street location in New York. Featuring eight works, the presentation documents the close family members that raised them, sourced from photo albums and video recordings during their time spent at home in Baltimore over lockdown.

Lewis is currently based between Baltimore and Miami.


Kyle Thurman, SPARKLE (an act or desire) (2021). Gouache, graphite, oil, and watercolour on mounted paper in artist's frame. Framed: 59.4 x 79.7 x 4.4 cm.

Kyle Thurman, SPARKLE (an act or desire) (2021). Gouache, graphite, oil, and watercolour on mounted paper in artist's frame. Framed: 59.4 x 79.7 x 4.4 cm. Courtesy the artist and David Lewis.

Kyle Thurman at David Lewis

Two of Kyle Thurman's characterful works were showing with David Lewis at Miami Beach. The Pennsylvania-born and Brooklyn-based artist is best known for his ongoing drawing series 'Suggested Occupation'.

Thurman's series, featuring soldiers and athletes against abstract backgrounds, seeks to reconfigure the patriachal and heterosexual paradigm of male bodies perpetuated by the media.

Nuanced representations of the male figure play out across his oeuvre, united in their garish tones and their ability to unearth what we have come to understand as the masculine archetype.


Andrew Cranston, Wept for a day gone by (2021). Pigment and gum arabic on hardback book cover. 26.1 x 19.1 cm.

Andrew Cranston, Wept for a day gone by (2021). Pigment and gum arabic on hardback book cover. 26.1 x 19.1 cm. Courtesy Ingleby.

Andrew Cranston at Ingleby

Andrew Cranston's works were shown alongside Frank Walter's for Edinburgh-based Ingleby's subtle Miami presentation.

Drawing on a variety of sources, most notably his own personal history, Cranston's works are filled with beautiful figurative vignettes of dappled, dream-like scenes. This sense of surrealism is emphasised through Cranston's repetitive layering of pigment onto hardback book covers.

A graduate of London's Royal College of Art, Cranston went on to lecture at Gray's School of Art in Aberdeen. Today, Cranston lives and works in Glasgow.


Joseph Yaeger, The unseen comprises the seen (2021). Watercolour on gessoed linen. 160 x 180 x 4 cm.

Joseph Yaeger, The unseen comprises the seen (2021). Watercolour on gessoed linen. 160 x 180 x 4 cm. Courtesy the artist and Project Native Informant, London.

Joseph Yaeger at Project Native Informant

Joseph Yaeger's watercolour paintings—drawn from photographs, film stills, and other media—are exquisitely rendered as unconventional close-ups as well as reflections on water and mirrors.

After graduating from London's Royal College of Art in 2019, Yaeger took part in a three-month residency at the newly established V.O Curations in London before being taken on by the ultra-cool East London gallery, Project Native Informant.

Since, the Montana-born artist has had two sell-out shows with the gallery in both 2020 and 2021.

Main image: Amani Lewis, What we do best? we dance! (2021) (detail). Acrylic, pastel, glitter, screen print on canvas. 203.2 x 142.2 cm. Courtesy Salon 94. Photo: Dan Bradica.


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