Art Basel Miami Beach

December 8 - December 10, 2023

Art Basel Miami Beach 2023

Galleries Sector, Booth B47


For Art Basel Miami Beach 2023, David Castillo presents a curated Galleries sector exhibition (Booth B47) bringing into dialogue the practices of gallery artists Lyle Ashton Harris, Pepe Mar, Glexis Novoa, Jorge Pantoja, Xaviera Simmons, Shinique Smith, Nadir Souirgi, Vaughn Spann, Su Su, and Yesiyu Zhao. This presentation traces the ways in which the body is envisioned, constructed, portrayed, and abstracted across a range of media, including assemblage, bronze sculpture, painting, and photography. The artists in this exhibition approach the body as a “bond between flesh and idea,” borrowing from the language of French philosopher Merleau-Ponty, locating the physical body as a charged network of meaning both seen and unseen.  


Lyle Ashton Harris has a legendary decades-long career exploring the body- whose is seen and whose is not. Love Split is a key example of his long-standing practice of assembling various photos of his own and others into compositions with profound narratives. 


In his new assemblage work, Pepe Mar gives form to bodies that emerge from material conglomerations between found objects. A new gold patinated bronze, edition of 3, is cast from his long-standing “heads” works of the last fifteen years.  


The real and speculative landscapes that rise from Glexis Novoa’s graphite drawings on marble point to the power of past, present, and future institutions. The roughly hewn edges of the marble slabs on which this work unfolds suggest the possibility for these structures and systems to crumble, corrupt, and decay.  Three new works are on view.  


Jorge Pantoja’s booth within a booth presentation gives the viewer insight into new works by the Cuban artist who for many years lived and worked in Miami.  The drawings are intimate in scale yet tell the story of the artist’s daily interactions. Following the trajectory of his well-known graphic works, these new drawings mark a time of fluidity, beauty, and freedom in his practice. 


In her works, Xaviera Simmons embodies characters who bear witness to American histories. She casts the body as a site to challenge the viewer to contend with the past in a photographic work as well as how the body is confronted by language in a new text painting. 


Shinique Smith embeds her works with memory, creating swirling, painterly abstractions wherein she and her body are codified as elements. Articles of clothing incorporated into her works—belonging to the artist and others—suggest the presence of the body in its absence.  


Nadir Souirgi’s new abstraction is both a physically and metaphorically layered work that mines textures and ideas. The work itself plays with elements of design and display in ways that are forward-thinking about abstract painting. 


Vaughn Spann abstracts the body into basic units of representation to universalize the human form and experience. Depicting the figure as an X—denoting bodies in searched positions, a new multi-X work is part of the exhibition. 


In expanded self-portraiture, Su Su depicts her own body within scenes of intercultural exchange. Her works play with formations of femininity, innocence, and vanity across the art histories and popular cultures of both China and the US.  


In his paintings, Yesiyu Zhao ventures beyond binaries of gender, depicting bodies that evade categorization. These figures similarly transit between cultures and visual languages, bridging pictorial conventions from Chinese genre painting & Beijing Opera with those from American popular culture.  

Lyle Ashton Harris
Pepe Mar
Glexis Novoa
Xaviera Simmons
Vaughn Spann
Yesiyu Zhao