It was bound to happen sooner or later. Art as backdrop. Art as event. Maybe it’s been happening for centuries. But not exactly like this.
David Lester, founder of the Palm Beach art fair, and his wife are building the Grand Luxe, a floating art gallery in the form of a luxury cruise ship that will hold up to 26 art exhibitors (gallery dealers). It sounds like he’s renting out the space for private and corporate sponsors, but exhibitors will also have to pay. Sounds to me like they should BE PAID for the rental of their art!
Worse, he wants to bring our sacred museums (the non-profit institutions that supposedly exist to serve the public) into the fold. Surely Thomas Krens and others at the Guggenheim would be the only ones to take him up on his offer. It’s okay for commercial ventures to be so . . . well . . . blatantly commercial, but, please, keep museums out of it!