Renowned visual artist Mickalene Thomas has made a name for herself creating work that examines ideas around race, sexuality and femininity. She recently had a “Better Nights” show at the Bass Museum during Miami’s Art Basel and unfortunately the event allegedly ended in racism.
Top publicist Tayo Otiti accused TV actor Fabian Basabe of calling her the N-word when he was getting thrown out of the venue. According to Page Six, Otiti prevented Basabe from entering the party where singer Jody Watley was performing because it was packed. “The room is at capacity… People have to leave for me to let people in,” Otiti told Page Six.
This is when Basabe called a museum honcho, who escorted him inside. However, he ended up “pissing off a bunch of people inside,” Otiti said. “When he’s leaving, he starts screaming at the top of his lungs, ‘peasant,’ ‘whore,’ ‘b*tch’ at me … When he’s 50 yards away, he screams, ‘Fu** you [N-word] b*tch,’” Otiti added.
Otiti also shared her experience on Instagram: “I was just called a [N-word] peasant b*tch and whore by Fabian Basabe — the flaming piece of sh*t racist garbage.”
Basabe, who appeared on the E! show “Filthy Rich: Cattle Drive”, strongly denies that he used the N-word, saying, “There aren’t two sides to this. There is fact.” He also explained that a museum board member got him past the line in the party. “To avoid drama … I called my friend,” he told Page Six. “I was dancing with everybody — the waitresses, the bartenders. I don’t mean to be full of myself, [but] people genuinely love me.”
Basabe confesses that he insulted Otiti on his way out the event but he says there was “no argument whatsoever.” He continued, “In passing, I said, ‘nice try, peasant.’ I 100 percent said it and will apologize for it. But she’s using the N-word and ‘whore’ to rally support … It is deeply upsetting and not true for her to use these trigger words.”
He then played the “I have Black friends” card, by explaining, “I just had in my home, Cuba Gooding Jr. .… praying with my kid! I just had George Foreman in my home just this past week … It’s truly unfair.”
Basabe has now hit Otiti with a cease-and-desist letter demanding that she doesn’t speak more about him.
A representative for the Bass Museum said, “We are aware there was an incident that occurred …This person is no longer welcome at the museum.”
A retired cop who worked security for the event, Fernando Sainz, co-signed Otiti’s accusation, saying, “I may be old, but I am not deaf, and I heard it clear as a bell: ‘peasant,’ ‘N-word.’ Nobody deserves to be called that, and that’s what really upset me.”