| Art |

Gator in the Bay Celebrates Its Second Art Basel in Miami Beach

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

As the story goes, a teenager visiting a Florida tourist trap bought a baby alligator and flushed it down the toilet. Months later, it emerged from the sewers, as big as a school bus, to stalk unsuspecting humans.

Well, Lloyd Goradesky's gargantuan Gator in the Bay was never dropped into the john, but the football-field-length floating reptile is set to prowl the waters off the Miami Yacht Club on Watson Island when Art Basel in Miami Beach rips into town December 5 through 8.

It's one of the first public art projects announced for this year's monster art fair and also one of the strangest -- just the kind of thing to augment the Magic City's reputation as a mecca for artistic lunacy.

See also: Art Basel 2012 Satellite Installations Are Turning Miami's Waterways into Art Galleries

"I've been photographing wildlife in the Everglades for more than two decades," Goradesky says. "When someone approached me a few years back and offered me the barge to use during Basel, that was how this project got its start."

The floating gator is intended to raise awareness of the fragile nature of the Florida Everglades and reflect the cooperation between industry and the local environment. Goradesky explains he chose the iconic reptile for his Basel opus because the creature is a barometer of our ecological health.

With a head that towers as high as a three-story condo, the gator will have a massive maw built around the boom of a crane that will snap open and closed. The skull, created from steel and recycled materials, will be a sculpture that stands on a barge.

The body will consist of 102 tiles, each four feet wide and eight feet long, made of highly buoyant material Goradesky calls "floating art tile."

Each of the 102 sections of the animal's body will be emblazoned with 5,000 unique, postage-stamp-size images that will create the illusion of an alligator when seen from afar. "I used more than 100,000 digital images I shot in the Everglades for the gator's body," Goradesky says. "It's one of the largest photo mosaics ever created in the world. If you look closely at the images, you'll see turtles mating, otters eating fish, and panthers taking a shit."

Continue reading "Gator in the Bay: Giant Art Invades Miami."

Follow Cultist on Facebook and Twitter @CultistMiami.

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.