Perhaps hoping to ease the shame of showing up to an art fair still rocking the mark of a late night out imprinted on your right hand, Exhibition A, the online edition-hawking site, has recruited a few big-name artists to design the re-entry stamps for Le Baron, the pop-up nightclub at the Delano, during its run at Art Basel Miami Beach.
Jeanette Hayes, Rob Pruitt, KAWS, Sadie Laska, and Bjarne Melgaard all contributed designs to the project, and each will see his or her work marking partygoers on one particular night. That means if you get in one night—say, tonight, when the club first opens its doors—you’ll need a new stamp to get in the next night. If you’ve ever been stuck in the scrum of drunk dealers and collectors and party kids clamoring in the line outside Le Baron, yeah, getting back in is not that easy.
Bill Powers, the co-founder of Exhibition A and Half Gallery proprietor (and ARTnews contributor), explained that the works aren’t on sale. (Though you could, perhaps, chop off your own stamped hand to sell, which doesn’t actually sound too improbable given the general tenor of this week.)
“I don’t see the artist hand stamps as editions,” Powers said. “It’s just a sneaky way to put a Rob Pruitt or a Sadie Laska on somebody likely unbeknownst to them. I mean, who looks at nightclub re-entry stamps? It’s funny in an art-fair atmosphere because I’m sure a day or two later you might still sees the remnants of an Exhibition A hand stamp or someone’s wrist.”
Pruitt’s stamp is particularly rich: it’s just “Alberto Mugrabi” in cursive, meaning Alberto Mugrabi is going to walk around Art Basel with people with “Alberto Mugrabi” on their hands.
“Rob Pruitt inking people with Tico Mugrabi’s signature at Art Basel Miami is just laugh-out-loud funny to me,” Powers said.