The Betsy | Art Basel Insider’s Guide

Though its location on Ocean Drive might suggest late-night parties and throngs of beautiful people hanging about, The Betsy (305-531-6100) is much more than that. The historic hotel on the street’s quieter north end has focused on year-round cultural programming since it reopened in 2009. And this Betsy is no dilettante: Every arts and letters program held here has an air of authenticity and an emphasis on true enrichment.

The Betsy Lobby - Ocean Drive Hotel - Historic Miami Beach Hotel - Art Basel
The lobby at The Betsy will house William Kentridge’s “20 Works from Universal Archive” exhibition.

For Art Basel, when the international art set descends upon Miami Beach, it is only logical The Betsy should pull out all the stops. A number of exhibitions will be hosted throughout the hotel, with many artists in residence, starting the week prior to the event. For collectors and the art-curious, this will be one of the main places to see and be seen. Here’s a taste of what to expect:


William Kentridge: 20 Works from ‘Universal Archive - The Betsy - Lobby Salon - Art Basel
“William Kentridge: 20 Works from ‘Universal Archive’” (Lobby Salon)—Kentridge, originally from South Africa, has exhibited his drawings and prints, and premiered his animated films, on a world stage, including include Ref 62 (above).


“Habits” (Annex Galleries)—Curated by Saul Ostrow and Lidija Slavkovic, this installation of works by emerging New York and Miami artists will focus on the formation of habit in artistic practice. Both Slavkovic and Ostrow will be in residence during Basel and will host the conversations.

Christopher Covier - B Ba at The Betsy - Art Basel 2013

This year, Trinidadian artist Christopher Cozier has been commissioned to fill the B Bar‘s special illuminated light boxes for Art Basel, titled “Christopher Cozier: Commissioned Works in the Light Boxes.”

Cozier, who will be in residence during Basel, works in various media, including video, performance, drawing, printmaking and installation. He also is an accomplished writer and considered among the Caribbean’s most important voices.


“The Girls of Baltimore” (Underground Gallery, Rooftop, Ocean Court, Betsy Soapbox)—This project embracing folk art, ethnic traditions, pop culture and social justice is curated by Leslie King Hammond, who will be in residence during the event.


The Betsy - BLT Steak - Miami Beach Hotel - Historic Ocean Drive Hotel
BLT Steak, The Betsy’s signature restaurant, will host The Whitney’s private patron dinner during Basel 2013.


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