Art Basel Names Bridget Finn as Director of Miami Beach Fair 2023
Finn’s career encompasses work in galleries and curatorial projects. In 2017, she co-founded the gallery Reyes | Finn in her hometown of Detroit, along with Terese Reyes. However, the partners have mutually decided to wind down operations this month. During its existence, Reyes | Finn gained recognition as a gallery to watch and made notable appearances in several US art fairs, including the past two editions of Art Basel Miami Beach. Their solo presentation of artist Nikita Gale in the fair’s Positions section was even recognized as one of the best booths of the 2022 edition by ARTnews.
In an email interview with ARTnews, Finn expressed her appreciation for the significance of Art Basel Miami Beach in the creative ecosystem of the Americas. The fair holds a crucial position at the intersection of North and South America, playing an essential role in fostering connections and cultural exchange among galleries, artists, and art communities in the region and beyond.
While in Detroit, Finn launched an initiative called Art Mile Detroit to support the city’s art scene. This initiative showcased digital exhibitions from local galleries, institutions, and artist-run spaces. Additionally, she initiated Flourish, a fundraising effort that included a charity auction at Christie’s. The proceeds from this event supported research for STXBP1 disorder, a condition her daughter has.
With Finn’s extensive experience and passion for the art world, Art Basel Miami Beach looks forward to a promising future under her leadership.
Before joining Reyes, Finn held various positions in the art world. She served as the head of the contemporary art program at Mitchell-Innes & Nash, a prominent Chelsea gallery, from 2013 to 2017. Prior to that, she worked as the director of strategic planning and projects at Independent Curators International (ICI) from 2010 to 2013, where she currently serves as a board member. Additionally, she had multiple roles at Anton Kern Gallery between 2007 and 2010. Finn also co-founded Cleopatra’s, a collaborative curatorial project in Greenpoint, alongside dealers such as Bridget Donahue and Colleen Grennan. The project operated from 2008 to 2018.
Vincenzo de Bellis, Art Basel’s director of fairs and exhibition platforms, praised Finn’s leadership abilities and dedication to supporting galleries, artists, and art communities. He highlighted her extensive knowledge of the gallery ecosystem, her understanding of the North and South American art markets, and her strong art-world network across the region.
Starting with the 2024 fair, Finn will assume the role of the director of Art Basel Miami Beach. For the 2023 show, she will report to de Bellis, who will lead in the interim. The application period for this year’s fair has closed, and the full list of exhibitors will be announced in September.
Expressing her vision for the Miami Beach fair, Finn mentioned her intention to familiarize herself with the position before fully immersing herself as the Director. She expressed excitement about collaborating closely with the team and partners in Miami Beach to enhance the show’s offerings for galleries, collectors, and audiences from both local and international spheres.
The title of Finn’s position, Director of Art Basel Miami Beach, is a new role as the fair was previously overseen by Art Basel’s Americas director. Since July 2021, when Noah Horowitz left Art Basel to join Sotheby’s before returning as Art Basel’s CEO, the fair has been without a dedicated leader. This restructuring reflects a broader change in leadership at Art Basel, with each fair now having its own dedicated director, all reporting to de Bellis. The Hong Kong and Basel fairs have already named their dedicated directors—Angelle Siyang-Le and Maike Cruse, respectively. The Paris+ fair also appointed a standalone fair director, Clément Delépine, several months before its inaugural edition.
Horowitz emphasized that this new structure allows Art Basel to deliver high-quality shows in each city while being relevant to the local and regional culture. Adeline Ooi, who previously led the Hong Kong fair, will retain her position as Asia director and focus on steering Art Basel’s initiatives across the region, including the collaboration with Art Week Tokyo in November. There are currently no plans to create an Americas director position or launch a new art fair within the new structure. Horowitz reiterated Art Basel’s commitment to delivering exceptional art fairs worldwide and exploring opportunities to engage existing and new audiences with compelling value propositions.