Art Basel Miami Beach

"Once Upon a Dream" Exhibit Promises to Put You to Sleep at Design Miami/

Some people would argue that Design Miami/Art Basel itself is the cure for insomnia. But we don't subscribe to that theory. Not totally. Or even mostly. Okay, not at all. But you have to admit some of the exhibits elicit some serious z's. And that'is most true of the "Once Upon a Dream" exhibit by Frenchie designer Mathieu Lehanneur which will debut at Design Miami/ during Art Basel Miami Beach.

More than art, the exhibit, which runs November 30 to December 5, is a specially designed room that promises to produce visions of jumping sheep by the thousands. Commissioned by (sponsor alert!) Veuve Clicquot, the official champagne of Design Miami/, the room controls disparate elements including temperature, ambiance, sound, and other sleep relevant properties to help the inhabitant get to dreamland no matter how bad his jet lag is.

The special room will be recreated at Design Miami/ but will be featured permanently at the upcoming re-opening of the champagne house's own Hôtel du Marc in Reims, France next year. Among the design features of the room are everything from periodic temperature decreases (to 66 degrees), the introduction of steadily increasing white noise, the discharge of sea air into the room (which is said to benefit metabolism and help produce deep sleep), and finally diminishing light. At Design Miami/, they'll also throw in a champagne bedtime story, with a reading of champagne founder Madam Clicquot's biography. We're getting sleepy already.

Who doesn't like the sound of a guaranteed good sleep? Lehanneur says his design for the sleep capsule incorporated research from renowned French sleep specialist Docteur Alain Nicolas (yeah, we know, we've never heard of him either, and we're not sure about the spelling of docteur).

And we have some concerns. First of all, the overhead lighting looks, honestly, kind of cheap. A little bit too much like the fluorescent lighting you'd find in a drop-down kitchen ceiling or in the garage, except that it changes colors to help get you in the mood to snooze.

Also, we're not sure why the light switch was dressed up like a hanging fern (watch below video). Is it a real or fake plant? A slight smattering of green doesn't exactly produce a harmonious nature feel so they should probably skip that. And what about that bed? It's kind of small, more like a double than a king, and we're thinking you might want to stretch a bit if you are going to sleep well in a crowded art fair in one of the most happening cities in the world. Yeah we said it.


Finally, it has to be said, give anybody champagne and read them what sounds like a boring bed time story and they're likely to snooze, fancy room or not. Still, the "Once Upon a Dream" room is worth a look so check it out -- the worst and best that can happen is that it will put you to sleep.

"The Once Upon a Dream" champagne bedtime stories will be available from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 30 and from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m on Wednesday, December 1, Thursday, December 2 and Friday, December 3. To sign up visit Design Miami/ will be located at the Miami Beach Convention Center P-Lot, at Meridian Avenue & 19th Street, from December 2 to 5.  For more Art Basel events click here.

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Sebastian del Mármol