in 1991, Alexis Hubshman, a young, up-and-coming New York artist, founded the SCOPE Art Show (SCOPE for short). He wanted to make new talents heard. The idea worked out: SCOPE developed into an important art fair beyond New York. Exhibitions are held annually in New York, Basel and Miami Beach. in 2021, “Miami Beach SCOPE” was all about NFTs. A trend that is likely to continue in subsequent years.
Art chic meets nerds
In 2022, the SCOPE art show in Miami Beach will take place again: from November 29 to December 4. SCOPE never wanted to be like an ordinary art fair. But that never stopped the scene from inviting its usual well-heeled. These meet rugged surfer types in Miami Beach – and with the arrival of the NFTs, the usual nerds as well. The fine ladies and gentlemen let plainly dressed geeks show them how to scan a QR code and view the artwork on their smartphones.
NFTs at SCOPE: New territory for art lovers
Even long-established art lovers are entering new territory here. They don’t quite know what to do with these non-fungible tokens yet. And what exactly an NFT is, only very few understand anyway. “Contemporary art feels at home at the edges. Form follows function and function follows form … No one really understands NFTs, but that’s what art is all about: new creative ideas. I’m always looking for art that teaches me something, and I believe that the artists themselves will have new ideas. We expect artists to teach us what NFTs are about,” said Mera Rubell, art collector, at Miami Beach SCOPE 2021.
Analog and digital artwork
At the center of the Miami Beach SCOPE art show was the “NFT FOCA.” Everything here focused on the many screens, flickering lights, moving images and peculiar graphics. The analog paintings almost disappeared behind the animated flood. For every work of art, there was an NFT equivalent for sale. As the Miami Times reports, their starting price was around 70% of the analog versions. However, the NFT market in particular was highly competitive. One of the tokens changed hands for more than $300,000.
YellowHeart enables VIP tickets as NFTs
In 2021, they had already come up with a few things. For example, SCOPE worked with YellowHeart to sell VIP tickets as NFTs. Each ticket included a unique digital image of emerging artists. One of the goals of this campaign was to make ticket sales more transparent. In the process, the NFTs ran on Polygon’s blockchain. There is no information yet on whether YellowHeart will be back in 2022.
The NFTs could be purchased as limited tokens on the YellowHeart marketplace. The digital artworks come from SCOPE’s “New Contemporary” program, so they feature selected young and talented artists. They include:
- Diana Sinclair
- CTWF (Coloring The World Foundation)
Miami Beach SCOPE 2021 Program
SCOPE celebrated its 20th anniversary on the beaches of Miami Beach with a direct view of the ocean. 140 exhibitors from all over the world were on display from December 01 to 05. VIPs were allowed to enter the site already from November 30. Besides installations in the “Atrium”, the main exhibition space, music performances and discussions continued to dominate the program. But art also lived on outside the main hall. For example, the street artist “Saype” transformed the Miami beach into a portrait of two hands holding a pen.
Wellness and beach as a playground
Saype is not the only one who was allowed to use the beach area for himself. The entrance area, the bars and the stages are also playgrounds for numerous artists. Apart from that, SCOPE still placed a high value on wellness and fitness. In cooperation with partners such as Evolve, the fair offered a well-being program for visitors. For this, the partner relied on yoga, breathing exercises and meditation.
Miami Beach under the spell of the NFTs
Among others, Tezos.Art was present with the exhibition “Human + Machine: NFT and the Ever-Evolving World of Art”. The carbon neutral NFT marketplace based on the Tezos blockchain focused on the merging of computers and humans, emerging technologies and the cultural shift they bring. Visitors were able to mint their own non-fungible tokens. German artist Mario Klingemann (artist name: Quasimondo) himself guided guests through the process on the Tezos blockchain. Apart from that, other artists present were:
- Helena Sarin
- Matt DesLauriers
- Sutu (Stuart Campbell)
- Iskra Velitchkova
In the atrium, artist “mister e” merged the real with the virtual world. He is known for his self-portrayal of the 100 US dollar stamp with the name “Benny Jr.”. In his exhibition “100” visitors could physically enter the NFTs. Also represented was SuperChiefGalleryNFT, the world’s first physical NFT gallery based in New York. The gallery presented a digital canvas with daily screenings of worldwide NFT artists.
Virtual Exhibitions in Immersive Miami Beach
The SCOPE Art Show shows that it understands the digital with the new concept “Immersive Miami Beach”. Part 1 took place in September, the second part at the same time as the actual art show in December. What exactly is it about?
- This is a purely virtual fair.
- Visitors navigate through digital spaces and exhibitions of numerous artists.
- The entire event takes place solely on the SCOPE website.
- Art collectors have the opportunity to purchase works right here in the digital space. The show can be easily “entered” and navigated through the browser.
Due to the quantity of artworks and the high image quality, it may take a while for the browser to load. A stable connection is recommended.
SCOPE wants political dialogue
The virtual fair is under the sign of the “New Contemporary”. SCOPE understands this as an opportunity for a broad dialogue on a political and social level. The fair works with non-profit organizations to specifically give more space to artists of color. On the one hand, so that they can make their own voices heard, on the other hand, to present their art to a larger audience.
What’s next for Art SCOPE?
The next Miami Beach SCOPE art fair from November 29 to December 4 promises another exciting program. VIPs and holders of a “Platinum First View” ticket will have the chance to get a taste of the program beforehand. They will already be granted access on 01 November. Also in this and the following years one can expect a diverse program of mainly young and emerging artists. To what extent the NFTs will play a role again is still unclear. In any case, the “New Contemporary” is still running and continues to launch the Non-fungible Tokens as an important building block of modern art.
Fairs in New York and Basel
If you don’t want to travel to Miami Beach, you can visit one of Art SCOPE’s other fairs. Events are also held at regular intervals in New York and in Basel, but with different focuses, exhibitions and dates. If travel is not desired, the operators still offer a 360° tour of the exhibitions. It’s all online at SCOPE’s website.
What is Contemporary Art?It is also referred to as "contemporary art" or "contemporary art." This term simply describes works of art that are created in the present time, by artists who are currently doing their work. As a rule, Contemporary Art is only a few years old, but it can also include older works by deceased artists.
FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions
At the Miami SCOPE one trades NFT artworks, which are auctioned live at the fair, online via their own platforms. In the process, both credit card payments and payments with cryptocurrencies occurred in 2021. So some art collectors may have already dealt with cryptocurrencies.
There is no fixed price for artists’ NFTs, just as there is no fixed price for artworks per se. Artists and art dealers set the price themselves. At auction, prices can rise even higher than the initial bid. Similar to cryptocurrencies, it is a more or less free market.
The legal status of NFTs is vague. Yet it is precisely this regulatory uncertainty that enables emerging and unknown artists to produce their own art and earn a share of the profits. For art collectors, however, there are some questions and risks. Currently, there are no clear guidelines for non-fungible tokens.