I was in a sour mood. I had just attended Art Basel in Miami with high hopes of discovering exceptional photo galleries. While I did come across several galleries featuring renowned masters like Ansel Adams, Paul Edward Weston, Irving Penn, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Yosuf Karsh, Arnold Newman, and Elliott Erwitt, their works were tucked away in obscure corners. To my dismay, the main attraction in one gallery was a triptych called “Gradient” with an exorbitant price tag of $50,000. These were oversized metal prints showcasing three standard and straightforward Photoshop gradients. To add insult to injury, they actually sold. It was the same year when a banana created a massive sensation in the art world.
Finally I attended an opening where a large section was cordoned off, and elegantly dressed people in gowns and tuxedos mingled outside the restricted area. Inside, on the floor, I came across a discarded pack of crushed Camel cigarettes. That piece sold for over $100,000