The Faena Arts District may not yet be ready for its close-up, but there is still something to see in these early stages. Said spectacle is in the elevator of the nearby Casa Claridge’s where they have had a series of artists give the public a taste of the creativity to come. The name of the project is aptly titled ELEVATE and the two artists who came before Typoe are Cristina Lei Rodriguez, who created a rather beautiful version of a mine replete with gold, and Consuelo Castañeda who made a baroque Mexican cathedral of the lift.
The Miami-based graffiti artist started by painting all the surfaces an inky black and then covered them with colorful stickers and bric-a-brak found in local gift shops, along with some good, old-fashion letters bound to bring the child out in all of us. The work is titled Getting Up, 2015 and is at once intimate and immersive. The piece also accomplishes something very difficult—making a ride in an elevator actually fun. The artist himself has joyfully observed many guests riding up and down, passing all the floors in order to simply get the chance to play with the letters. In this way Getting Up is a living, breathing installation of the best kind—one that suspends time and shuts out everything around it.
ELEVATE has been a subtle success, getting people excited about things to come in the soon-to-open Faena Arts District that is comprised of many buildings, including two hotels, three residential buildings, and a cultural space designed by OMA, which is starchitect Rem Koolhaas’s architecture firm. The project spans from 32nd to 36th along what was once a pretty quiet stretch of Collins Avenue. That’s all going to change after the grand opening this November. We don’t even want to think about what it will be like during Basel – which will mark one year after they had their semi-official opening with a series of amazing Argentinian barbecue feasts for the A-listers in town.
See above: Cristina Lei Rodriguez’s earlier treatment of the elevators at Casa Clarige—which by the way is also a Faena property.