MiamiHerald- A section of Art Basel Miami Beach was transformed into a crime scene after a fight escalated to a stabbing at the show’s main event inside the Miami Beach Convention Center on Friday night, police said.
A woman pulled an X-Acto knife and stabbed another woman in the arms and neck, said Miami Beach police spokeswoman Det. Kathleen Prieto.
“The injuries are non life-threatening,” Prieto said. The victim was transported to Jackson Memorial Hospital; the assailant, whom police did not identify, was arrested at the scene.
Both women were patrons of the art show, not exhibitors. Some patrons thought the stabbing was a performance art presentation. Others believed the police tape cordoning off an area of the convention center was part of an art installation.
The stabbing occurred in a corridor near an art installation entitled “The Swamp of Sagittarius,” created by Miami artist Naomi Fisher and partner Agatha Wara.
Fisher said she was at her exhibit when she heard a scuffle and later saw a woman being wheeled away by paramedics at about 5:30 p.m.
“A guy walked up to me and said, ‘I thought I saw a performance, and I thought it was fake blood, but it was real blood.’”
She said an artist named Rudy Perez showed her a photo that he snapped on his cellphone, showing a woman dressed in white with blood stains on her clothes.
Fisher said the stabbing took place in front of booth N29, where Freedman Fitzpatrick Gallery from Los Angeles was exhibiting.
Police cordoned an area near the Washington Avenue entrance to the convention center. It was in a section of the show called NOVA designed to promote young artists.
“It’s horrible … I’m so freaked out,” Fisher said. “I feel nauseous.”
Art gallery representatives who witnessed the incident declined to give their names but said they saw a woman with what appeared to be a pen in her neck. One gallerist said she heard a scream and ran over and saw a young woman lying on the floor bleeding from her neck.
Two Coconut Grove women sipping champagne walked up to the police tape. When told by a reporter about the stabbing, they expressed shock.
“It’s a very strange place for something like this to happen,” said Amanda DeSeta.
“It makes me very nervous,” said Sune Smith.
Both women said their purses were searched at the entrance to the convention center show, but not thoroughly.
Gregg Hill, a sculptor visiting from New York, said he saw the victim being wheeled out on a gurney but never suspected she was the victim of a violent act.
“I thought a piece of art fell on her,” he said. “I never would have thought there would be a stabbing at Art Basel. … People didn’t really know what had happened. It was calm and everyone was milling around and talking.”
Fucking Art Basel. That time of year every December where assholes flock from all over the world for the largest convention in Miami to see “Art.” Now a small part of me feels like I’m in a weird spot because I use to hang out with a lot of the art kids in school and a buddy of mine actually had a gallery at Basel one year, but the thing is, I’m not a pretentious asshole who thinks color on a canvas means its a great work of art and when I see a fucking xacto blade sticking out of some poor Asian chicks jugular I’m gonna call the ambulance.
Now I want to blame this all on the bystanders not doing a damn thing, but this is on the Artist and the culture that “Art” is now a days. Every body has to be a weirdo and try to do things that are so whacky and call it art. Paint me a picture of like cute puppies or something and im fine with calling it art that belongs in the fucking Louvre but that’s not enough for some ass hole “artist”. They need to push boundaries. They need to do whacky stuff like paint with their period blood and shit. Well if im in a convention center dedicated to that degree of asshole, then I probably wouldn’t be too shocked to find out there was an exhibit featured some fresh off the boat Asian getting shived by a crazy bitch.