Sometime between December 4th and 6th the Herzog & deMeuron designed Miami Art Museum will be revealed to the public for the first time. So says Terence Riley, the museum's director in the December issue of Smithsonian magazine which profiles Art Basel.
We believe that "unveiling" will be the most important part of Art Basel. Depending upon what the wunderkinds of Switzerland have come up with, it could be as important to architecture and aesthetics as the unveiling Pericles must have enjoyed when he showed his plans for the Parthenon to the Athenians 2,400 years ago. This year's hot artists may or may not outlive their hype a decade much less centuries. Some may not even make it to next year's fair. And that doesn't matter because most of those works will never be seen by the common man since they will be scooped up by wealthy investors for private collections. But the art museum may well be around a lot longer. Especially in the minds of men. Whether or not it is as inspiring as the Parthenon remains to be seen. We can only hope because Riley is quoted as wanting a "great museum" instead of an "iconic" one. We can only ask, why can't they be the same?
UpDate (11/30): The working models were unveiled today. Although the Miami Herald reports people are tripping over themselves to praise the design, we are underwhelmed.