What You Need To Know About Juxtapoz + Milk at Art Basel
Things are looking damn fine for the Milk fam: Art Basel Miami is now one week away and we’re comin’ in hot! As announced yesterday, we’ve partnered with underground art bible Juxtapoz to create the Juxtapoz Clubhouse, the spot that will house installations by the likes of Swoon, David Ellis, and Dennis McNett (to name a few), skate-able art by Andrew Schoultz, and a pop-up bookstore with the dopest merch in Miami.
We caught up with one of our friends at Juxtapoz, Dave Sypniewski, to talk the Juxtapoz and Milk partnership, sleeping on floors for art, and creating an Art Basel experience where everyone feels like they’re allowed to participate. Peep the full interview below.
How did the Juxtapoz and Milk partnership come to be?
The Juxtapoz and Milk relationship happened through Eugene Lemay at Mana Contemporary—he was the one who brought us together. Gene was discussing Scott’s installation with us, and they were trying to work out where they were gonna put it within the Mana campus, and Juxtapoz said they’d love to have Scott + Milk in the Clubhouse if they were interested.
THEN, everyone came down and it was almost a magical moment where we became family.
YES! So we’re amped to check out the Juxtapoz Clubhouse—have you guys done a Clubhouse-type activation before?
We’ve tried to do variations before. In 2014, we took over the pool house area at The Shore Club, and we had a smaller scale, more intimate clubhouse activation there. We had fun things going on, it was a little more low key for artist friends. At the same time, we did a Shepard Fairey dinner and a few more parties. But, as we were looking around, we realized our favorite part of the week was the time we spent with artist friends, just hanging out and creating that oasis for the creative people involved, where people can hang out and not be stressed out about which Real Housewife will be sitting next to them at dinner.
After that, we couldn’t find another home, so we partnered with SCOPE to curate installations with people like Swoon, and we did our grotesque newsstand for the first time.
Last year, we partnered with The Surf Lodge, and tried the clubhouse vibe, but we couldn’t quite connect the dots. When this opportunity with Mana showed up and we realized we could show everyone’s art in the way that art can be taken seriously, then create that environment for everyone to hang and share stories, that was the dream coming to fruition—with the help of Mana and the space they provided.
What do you hope people get out of the Juxtapoz Clubhouse?
For the general public, we are giving them the opportunity to interact with their favorite artists. For artists and all the unsung creatives, we are providing them with an opportunity to come and chill and feel welcome and be a part of everything. Our ultimate goal is for everyone to feel as though they are a part of the art community. No lines or RSVPs—it’s a very open environment where everyone’s invited.
That being said, Juxtapoz definitely appreciates what the art fairs do provide—we’re not trying to take away anything, we fully support all galleries showing artists’ work and supporting them. We’re not trying to undermine them, we’re just showing art that doesn’t fit in a restrictive booth area.
When people leave the Juxtapoz Clubhouse, how do you want them to feel?
Like their face just got melted!
We want them to feel empathy—like the art actually spoke to them. We want them to feel like they could engage in what the artists were communicating through their art, that they could enjoy what the artists presented to them, and that they had the opportunity to interact with art in a way that doesn’t feel like there’s a need for commerce.
If you could sleep at the Juxtapoz Clubhouse, would you?
I will be! Shit is expensive in Miami during Art Basel!
Anything else you want to say before we hit Miami?
There really is all this art out there. You can be overwhelmed with it at times, and lost navigating what it may or may not mean, but at the end of the day, we want to have that nurturing environment where everyone feels like they’re allowed to participate.
Photo via Juxtapoz.
Stay tuned to Milk for more Art Basel news.