Hernan Bas

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On display until November at the Rubell Family Collection (RFC) in Miami is a decade of Hernan Bas’ works collected by the Rubell Family. The RFC is a museum-size collection of contemporary works dating back to 1960 housed in a converted 45,000-square-foot former Drug Enforcement Agency (D.E.A.) confiscated-goods warehouse. The Bas exhibit opened in early December 2007 to coincide with the movement of collectors and dealers flying south for Art Basel Miami. Hernan Bas is one of South Florida’s most well received artists. Though only thirty years old, his work is included in the Museum of Modern Art and Saatchi Gallery permanent collections. He graduated in 1996 from the New World School of the Arts and lives and works in Miami. Bas’ acrylic, watercolor, and gauche paintings take on the aesthetic of a blurry photograph, capturing intimate moments with a wide brush. His figurative subjects, if any, are always boys and men, and the viewer is invariably invited to peek into Bas’ world as a gay man. Bas’ vibrant pallet and the fairy tale and mythological scenes that he creates-often derived from history and high-art does not linger far from stereotypical utopian playgrounds. In the RCF exhibit, Bas features three multimedia works one of which is an underwater symposium, titled “Ocean’s Symphony (Dirge for the Figi Mermaid).” The installation includes a phantasmagorical documentation of an underwater dance searching for the Figi Mermaid. In the gallery space adjacent lays an archive of ocean treasures carefully collected including a life-size replica of the mummified mermaid herself.

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