Giant Gator Head to Float on Biscayne Bay During Art Basel

Lloyd Goradesky came up with the idea three years ago

Don't be surprised if you see an enormous gator head floating around Biscayne Bay during Art Basel.

When it's assembled, the gator, made of steel and recyclable materials, will be 230 feet long. Its head_ the size of a three-story building  _ will be built around the boom of a crane so that the mouth can open and close.

The body will consist of 102 tiles, each being 4 feet wide and 8 feet long, made of highly buoyant material.

Lloyd Goradesky, a Hollywood-based artist and photographer, came up with the idea for "Floating Tile Art 'Gator in the Bay,'" three years ago.

"The whole idea of the piece is to bring awareness to the Everglades and awareness to our surroundings," Goradesky said.

The tiles will be a photo-mosaic, and from a distance it will look like the body of alligator. Up close, it will be a collage of 6,528 Everglades images that Goradesky has taken over the last 25 years.

"The body is not real. It's more of an illusion," he said.

The tiles will be separated and sold off as art packages for $5,000 each. They will include a licensed aerial photo, a diagram of the project with a depiction of where the tile was on the body, an explanation of the project, a certificate of authenticity and the tile with all its rigging.

On Nov. 26, once the "skin" is assembled and the gator head is sliced into three length-wise pieces for easier transport, they will be driven over Alligator Alley to Fort Lauderdale, where they will be assembled on the barge. Ultimately, they will float around Biscayne Bay during Art Basel Miami Beach. The international art fair runs from Dec. 6 to 9.

The head and body will be attached during a ceremony in May.

"The whole idea of the piece is for it to be free for public viewing," he said.

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