The Brooklyn-based art duo, Patrick Miller and Patrick McNeil, known as FAILE, have occupied a vacant storefront at 16th St. and Washtington Ave. on South Beach to create The FAILE BÄST Deluxx Fluxx Arcade 2013 Miami Beach presented by Perrier. In collaboration with fellow Brooklyn artist BÄST, the Miami Beach arcade is the third iteration of this lo-fi, throwback exhibition previously installed in London and New York in 2010.
For the Miami incarnation, the games are brand new and inspired by the city with subjects such as the ocean, condos, palm trees, drug references and boats. While video arcade games and foosball tables have appeared at past Deluxx Fluxx Arcades, two pinball machines are a brand new addition.
The games are created by scouring vintage cabinets and stripping them down. While the duo once used old CRT monitors and computers for the digital component, the Miami installation features new technology in favor of consistent functionality.
Whereas before the machines were created within the installation space, Miami’s arcade games were built in their Brooklyn studio allowing for more attention to detail.
“It’s a lighter take on everything else that happens throughout the year,” says McNeil. “It encapsulates all the things we like to work with: sculpture, printmaking, painting, digital media, music. It’s a fun way to blow out the year and have a party.”
The exhibit is interactive and immersive, and visitors are encouraged to not only touch the art, but to play with it. The fully functioning arcade games - 25 in all - include Jet Ski races where palm trees are chopped down and condos are erected. There's a surfing safari game with a horse on a surfboard, a play on words revolving around "seahorse." And a newfangled Tetris game is a nod to their work with woodblocks.
“It’s bringing the artwork to life, letting the user have the ability to interact with the art in a different way and being able to influence it themselves,” says Miller. “They can create a piece of art on their own within the piece.”
A front room where the video games are found is wallpapered in black and white posters with different FAILE "logos," action heroes and Western themes. The back room with foosball tables is covered in dayglo black light posters, along with FAILE’s riff on neon Spanish tile floors.
While they’ve visited Miami before to paint walls in Wynwood, this is their first Art Basel experience. “We’ve heard so many stories, and we know there’s great fairs and private events,” says Miller. “We keep waiting for all these crazy art hipsters to appear,” adds McNeil.
The FAILE BAST Deluxx Fluxx Arcade 2013 Miami Beach is an open invitation to enjoy art in an unpretentious setting, and a reprieve from the seriousness of other art events of the week. As Miller says, “Come play.”
The Deluxx Fluxx Arcade opens Tuesday, December 3 at 8 p.m. with an invite only party. The installation will be open to the public December 3 to 8 from 3 p.m. until late at 1604 Washington Ave.
More information: http://www.deluxxfluxx.com.
Photo: Tomas Loewy