By Colleen Dougher
Miami-Dade museums and cultural centers offer their usual array of diverse offerings for the 2013-14 season, from the big-fat art fair that — if pronounced correctly — rhymes with nozzle, to shows that ooze masculinity, help save stadiums and question this affair we’re having with technology.
Art Basel Miami Beach
The oft-mispronounced Art Basel Miami Beach is the gigantic fair in which 258 leading international galleries from 31 countries will exhibit historical work from masters of modern and contemporary, as well as works from emerging artists.
Art Basel, launched by gallerists in Basel, Switzerland in 1970, debuted its “sister fair”at Miami Beach Convention Center in 2002, and this year added Hong Kong to the annual lineup.
Billed as “the favorite winter meeting place for the international art world” the Miami Beach fair attracts more than 50,000 visitors annually and has spawned numerous satellite fairs (there’s an informative guide to those fairs on Artcollecting.com). The event draws some of the world’s leading gallerists and collectors, and inspires Miami-Dade artists, venues and cultural institutions to put forth their personal best in hopes of capturing some of that attention. Expect to see art everywhere, including outside walls that become giant canvases for renowned street artists.
It’s organized art chaos, and trying to attend every art event/party happening that week just might be enough to kill an ordinary person. But go ahead and give it a shot.
This year’s four-day art-a-thon kicks off Dec. 5 at Miami Beach Convention Center. Tickets are $42 for day hours, $32 for evening hours and free for children under 16 accompanied by a parent. For more details, visit Miamibeach.artbasel.com.
ArtCenter/South Florida, Miami Beach
ArtCenter/South Florida has become increasingly involved in partnerships. Its next collaboration, titled On Location: Carol Jazzar Contemporary Art, is billed as “an effort to connect the contemporary art market and the non-profit art world.”
Jazzar, who curated the exhibition, describes it as a pop-up show in which artists from Carol Jazzar Contemporary Art’s roster are exploring manifestations of masculinity.
“Kuhl and Leyton use acrylic tape as a drawing medium to depict white collar crimes,” she notes. “The two works presented illustrate notorious cases: the Madoff Ponzi scheme and the corruption of lobbyist Jack Abramoff. These original compositions translate information gleaned from news media into pictorial episodes.”
Roberto Visani will display guns he made from found objects and unconventional materials to express “the persistence of masculine aggression and the ineffectualness of violence,” while David Rohn will exhibit photographic self-portraits in which he inhabits various roles including construction man, technical man and soldier. Jorge Pantoja’s works on paper represent stills from movies in which a featured male character is reacting to extreme pressures. After viewing and selecting the stills from films such as The Shining, Full Metal Jacket and Midnight Cowboy, he reproduced them from memory.
The show, which opens 6-10 p.m. Oct. 9 and runs through Nov. 3, will be followed by Between Walls, Juan Lopez’s solo show curated by Susan Caraballo (opens 6-10 p.m. Nov. 20 and runs through Jan. 12) and Experiments in Geometry + Other Projects featuring works by Xabier Basterra, Rosemarie Chiarlone, Peter Hammar + Alex Trimino and Regina Jestrow + Laz Ojalde (6-10 p.m. Dec. 4 through January 19 at Project 924)
ArtCenter/South Florida is at 800, 810 and 924 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach. Richard Shack Gallery hours are noon to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday. Project 924 is open noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. Call 305-674-8278 or visit Artcentersf.org.
Bakehouse Art Complex, Miami
Bakehouse Art Complex, a non-profit organization that houses 60 artist studios, two galleries and community workspaces, enters fall with a focus on photography.
Welcome to Hard Times: Landscape Photographs of East Texas is a project in which Vaughn Wascovich, an associate professor at Texas A&M University-Commerce, used large format pinhole cameras to document parts of Northeast Texas, an area he describes as “a landscape with a rich and storied past, but also one of an uncertain and shifting future. Images of mobile homes, collapsed churches, abandoned farms and even earth-moving machinery all reiterate this idea of impermanence.”
Born in Youngstown, Ohio, Wascovich moved from Missouri to Northeast Texas in 2007, and became interested in the Red River and how it defined the border and affected the landscape. “The more I traveled around, the more places started to haunt me,” he reveals. “I’d get glimpses of Faulkner’s south in the color of light or the bend of a tree, the way a field is defined by an old bois d’arc fence. Beauty here isn’t obviously apparent, but it’s here for sure. There are few things ‘grand’ about this place, but when you dig in, look around, it’s incredible, really.”
The 23 images in Hard Times represent his findings, and the many hours that went into the project.
Simply put, a pinhole camera is a box with no lens — just a tiny hole through which exterior light is projected onto paper or film. Getting more than one picture per outing requires more than one camera.
“I have 14 cameras, and each one holds one 8-by-20 paper negative, so I load the car, go shooting, come back, unload, process, reload and go back out,” explains Wascovich. “On a good day I can do that twice, shooting 20-28 images. That’s a long day, from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., and I’m usually pretty beat at the end of it. I figure if I get one or two usable images, I’m pretty happy.”
As Wascovich points out, pinhole photography isn’t like digital photography, where one can easily predict the outcome of a shot. “I never know what I’m going to get, and because of my developing method, sometimes the composition is really altered by the processing marks,” he says.
Those marks play a significant role in the work. “I’ve been very influenced by ceramics, especially the ceramics from the Momoyama period in Japan,” Wascovich notes. “Those pots reveal the marks of their own making, the tool marks, the hand marks, the marks from the firing. Likewise I try to do that with my work with the pinholes and what I’m doing in the darkroom. I only get a minute or so to see the image and make marks with the developer and fixer. It’s a fast crazy dance in the dark. Sometimes I get lucky… about one in every 10.”
Hard Times will open in Audrey Love Gallery 7-10 p.m. Oct. 11 along with The World in Images, which will feature works by Lauren Swartzbaugh, Irina Dakhnovskaia-Lawton, Ralph Ventura, Sarah Henderson Licht and Harvey Zipkin — all BAC resident artists who work primarily in photography.
Other BAC season highlights include:
● Textiles for Men and Machine Breakers, a show (curated by Bernice Steinbaum) in which mixed media/fiber artist Carrie Sieh intends to “deconstruct the common assumption that textile craft belongs solely to the domestic sphere of women’s activity, and to illustrate the persistent connections between masculinity, technology and labor” (Feb. 14-March 7).
● The Mixing Bowl, a show in which Bakehouse artists from 18 countries will exhibit works that address their personal views on immigration and diversity (March 14-30).
Bakehouse Art Complex is at 561 N.W. 32nd St., Miami. Regular hours are noon to 5 p.m. daily. Admission is $5 during opening receptions held the second Friday of each month, and free during regular hours. Call 954-576-2828 or visit Bacfl.org.
Bass Museum, Miami Beach
TIME, a multi-project exhibition that will include painting, design objects, performance and more, is meant to provide a link between the museum’s historical collection and contemporary culture.
Manny Prieres, who is interested in “how marginalized and taboo ideas evolved through time” will exhibit hand-reproduced covers of J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and other previously censored books in It Was a Pleasure to Burn. The covers, each rendered in dark graphite on a black background, are intended to remind viewers of the fear once associated with the content of the books.
A Queer and Curious Cabinet, a site-specific installation by Miami-born artist Hernan Bas, will include objects from both the artist’s and the museum’s collections, to examine connections that form over time and reveal “unexpected links between the objects.”
The show will also include performances (held during gallery hours Dec. 4 through 8) by Romanian-based artists Alexandra Pirici and Manuel Pelmus, who will work with a few other performers to re-enact works from the museum’s collection.
TIME runs Nov. 2 through Feb. 23.
Other upcoming exhibitions include: Piotr Uklański: ESL in which Polish-born artist Uklański uses the acronym for English as a Second Language to define his status as an immigrant and abstract expressionist. “Neither English nor abstraction is my mother tongue. These paintings ‘speak’ an aesthetic ESL,” he notes in a statement about his show, which runs Dec. 5 through March 16.
Bass Museum is at 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Hours are noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is $8, $6 for seniors and students with ID, free for children under 6. Call 305-673-7530 or visit Bassmuseum.org.
Coral Gables Museum, Coral Gables
If Miami Marine Stadium could talk, the tales it would tell.
Coral Gables Museum and Friends of the Miami Marine Stadium help bring the stories and memories into the sunlight with Concrete Paradise: The Miami Marine Stadium.
The multimedia show, curated by architecture conservator Rosa Lowinger, is billed as “the first ever museum exhibit devoted to the Marine Stadium’s flashy past, edgy dilapidated present, and its spectacular proposed comeback as a world-class sports and performance venue.”
The 6,566-seat stadium, which Lowinger describes as “a modernist concrete structure that looks like an origami rendition of the Sydney Opera House” was built 50 years ago for speedboat race watching and community events, and eventually becoming a concert venue for the likes of Jimmy Buffett, Willie Nelson, Bonnie Raitt, The Beach Boys and others who appeared on its floating stage. The stadium, which appeared in a Miami Vice episode and was a filming location for the 1967 Elvis Presley movie Clambake, also hosted appearances by religious crusader Billy Graham, ex-President Richard Nixon and former talk show host Phil Donahue.
Then in 1992, after Hurricane Andrew, the history-steeped building along Biscayne Bay was declared unsafe. But Marine Stadium, even after demolition threats and decades of neglect, refused to die.
“Miami’s architectural jewel has continued to be a focal point for cutting-edge artistic trends,” Lowinger notes. “Graffiti artists and skateboarders have turned its ramps and raw concrete expanses into one of the nation’s most important venues for street art.”
The stadium, shuttered 20 years ago, has since become the backdrop for, and sometimes the subject of, photography shoots and videos. As Lowinger told WLRN in July, “It’s been abandoned by the city, but it’s not been abandoned by young people.”
Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, which has been seeking restoration of the stadium since 2008, won’t likely abandon it either. The non-profit group, which in July received Miami City Commission approval to develop and submit a renovation plan, continues in its goal of raising $30 million to restore and reopen the stadium.
“Every city has a building that is emblematic of its culture and history,” Lowinger notes in her statement about the show. “New York has the Empire State Building and Paris has the Eiffel Tower. For Miami, Florida, that building is the Ralph Munroe Marine Stadium …”
Concrete Paradise, which will include works by photographer Edgar Velasquez, New York sculptor and video artist Marie Lorenz, graffiti artists Come and Fish and others who have used the stadium as a subject matter in their work, opens Oct. 17 and runs through Jan. 5.
The museum’s other upcoming shows include:
● Palletcraft, which represents the three years FIU instructor Eric Peterson spent building furniture and researching the “material potential” of shipping pallets with architecture students (opens Nov. 1 in the Anthony R. Abraham Family Gallery).
● Urbanism: Perceived and Interpreted, a show in which Bakehouse Art Complex resident artists respond to Miami’s current urban environment (Feb. 2 through March 30).
Coral Gables Museum is at 285 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables. Museum hours are noon to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday (later on Friday Gallery Nights), 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $7, $5 for students and seniors with ID, $3 for children 6 through 12, free for children under 6. Call 305-603-8067 or visit Coralgablesmuseum.org.
The Frost Art Museum
The Frost opens its season with Colombian artist Alberto Baraya’s exhibition Naturalism/Artificiality: Expeditions and Research of the Herbarium of Artificial Plants.
Baraya’s exhibition, curated by Francine Birbagher, includes selections from three series: Herbarium of Artificial Plants, in which the artist photographs a continuing collection of fake plants and makes taxonomies detailing their characteristics; The Fables of the Birds, which features photos of stuffed dissected birds; and Anthropometries, which focuses on measuring people using a tool scientists once used to assess and understand physical differences among humans.
According to the Frost, Baraya has spent more than a decade making works that “question and parody the agendas and empirical objectivity of seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth-century European expeditions that purported to scientifically collect and quantify the indigenous flora, fauna and peoples of the Americas.”
The show, part of Frost’s 2013 exhibition series Commemorating 500 Years: Spain-Florida-Caribbean opened Sept. 18 along with exhibitions by two FIU faculty members. One explores infancy and the other, war.
● Baby Pictures features images from a printmaking system Michael Namkung created so that his newborn son Clyde could use the pressure of his body (while laying on the floor) to make drawings. Accompanying Baby Pictures is The People’s Lullaby Collective, Namkung’s related audio component based on feedback from people who responded to his invitation to make and share personal smartphone voice recordings (in any language) of lullabies they’ve sung to help infants or toddlers fall asleep. Rounding out Namkung’s trio of exhibitions is This Is Where Meaning Is Made, billed as “the world’s largest foam alphabet floor.”
● Re-enactments, Pip Brant’s exhibition of paintings and embroidery, is portrayed as an alternative to reenactments or conventional art works that depict battles or wars in a less-than-authentic way. As Brant notes in the press release: “Even though there are attempts at authenticity, this is an impossible task. A degrading of the actual battles happens. Political correctness can further pollute the forgotten truths. With my works, I am trying to decompose these events even more, with the removal and color conversions of visual information. The question I want to play with has to do with color switches and abstractions that sweeten the gory truths usually romanticized by traditional panoramic historical painting and embroidery. I want to see color convey the content.”
Naturalism/Artificiality runs through Jan. 5, and Namkung and Brant’s exhibitions run through Oct. 13. Other upcoming shows include Crisis and Commerce: World’s Fair of the 1930s (Sept. 18-Jan. 5), Eternal Cuba: The Darlene M. and Jorge M. Pérez Collection at FIU (Oct. 16-Dec. 8) and Things That Cannot Be Seen Any Other Way: The Art of Manuel Mendive (Nov. 16-Jan. 26).
The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum is at Florida International University, University Park, 10975 S.W. 17th St., Miami. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. Call 305-348-2890 or visit Thefrost.fiu.edu.
Pérez Art Museum, Miami
Pérez Art Museum Miami (formerly Miami Art Museum) will reopen in its new 200,000-square-foot building overlooking Biscayne Bay, just in time for Art Basel.
The doors will open with the museum’s permanent collection, which includes works from artists working in North America, South America, Central America and the Caribbean, thematically displayed in six collection galleries collectively titled Americana. The spaces, all of which are located on the gallery’s first two floors, have each been developed in the form of “a short essay, offering a focused view on a particular issue or set of preoccupations that have engaged artists from the Americas since the mid-twentieth century.”
While the presentations are titled Desiring Landscape, Sources of the Self, Formalizing Craft, Progressive Forms, Corporal Violence and Commodity Culture, the works and themes explored in Americana will continue to evolve as the galleries are periodically reconfigured to accommodate new acquisitions and other works from the museum’s collection.
In addition to Americana, the museum will kick off its season with nine exhibitions (all opening Dec. 4) including The Craft of Modernity, a selection of works by late Cuban painter Amelia Peláez (through Feb. 23), and For Those in Peril on the Sea, British sculptor Hew Locke’s installation that includes dozens of scaled down-replicas of cigarette boats, catamarans, cruise liners, old cargo ships, fishing skiffs and other vessels hanging from the ceiling (through May 25).
Pérez Art Museum is at 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, with additional evening hours 6-9 p.m. Thursday. Admission is $12, $10 for seniors, $6 for ages 13 through 18, and free for children under 12 and students with ID. Call 305-375-3000 or visit Pamm.org.
The Lowe Art Museum, Coral Gables
Beauty Beyond Nature: The Glass Art of Paul Stankard is an exhibition that spans more than four decades and may show museum-goers why the 71-year-old artist has been called “the father of modern glass paperweights.”
The 60 still-life sculptures, ranging from paperweights the artist made in 1969 to Honeybee Swarm Orb, an eight-inch blown glass round sculpture made in 2011, are from the collection of Robert M. Minkoff, whose foundation organized this exhibition along with the Museum of Glass in Tacoma.
Stankard’s glass sculptures offer a close-up look at flora, fauna, insects and more, all of which the flame worker made from glass to evoke the experience of nature.
As Stankard notes on his website, he references “the continuum of nature by portraying and exploring the mysteries of seeds, fertility and decay” in work that celebrates “the primal beauty of nature on an intimate level.” His work, he has also said, is about sex, death and God.
Beauty Beyond Nature will run Nov. 2 through Jan. 5 in Green Gallery.
Those who attend the show can also check out ?#@*$%! the Mainstream: The Art of DIY Self-Expression, an exhibition (in the Friends of Art Gallery) of zines from University of Miami Libraries Special Collections.
As the press release notes about the zines, “Despite the expansion of topics, the format usually remained the same: crudely made booklets printed in limited editions and typically produced with a photocopy machine with the goal of individual, independent self-expression, not beholden to advertisers or the mainstream reading public.”
The booklets address everything from literary works and science fiction to anarchy, punk rock, dumpster diving and tattoo art. UM’s ongoing zine collection includes titles such as: Mouth of the Rat (1980) and Rational Inquirer (1994-95) both of which covered punk rock in South Florida; Sticky Fingers, a zine about bikes, gardens and graffiti, and the Untitled anarchofeminist anti-rape zine. UM offers its zine titles online.
Opening Jan. 25: Pueblo to Pueblo: The Legacy of Southwest Indian Pottery, an exhibition of Pueblo Indian pottery from the mid-19th to mid-20th centuries curated by Bill Mercer (runs through March 23).
Lowe Art Museum is at the University of Miami, 1301 Stanford Drive, Coral Gables. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. General admission is $10, free for children under 12. Call 305-284-3535 or visit Lowemuseum.org.
Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami
Love of Technology, the first MOCA show curated by the museum’s new curator Alex Gartenfeld, is a group exhibition featuring emerging and established artists who are using their work to “challenge the logic of computer operating systems and question the impact of continued interaction between humans and technology.”
The artists, some of whom are showing in an American museum for the first time, include Ian Cheng, whose video installation is powered by code that’s continually being rewritten, Josh Smith, who abstract paintings include “machine-like repetition of motifs,” and artist Ben Schumacher and architect John Keenen, who will jointly open a temporary architectural firm in MOCA’s lobby.
The show, which opened Sept. 26, runs through Nov. 3.
Tracey Emin: Angel Without You, which opens Dec. 4, is billed as the first American museum exhibition dedicated to British artist Tracey Emin and first ever to focus primarily on her use of neon.
Emin has garnered much attention for the very personal nature of works such as Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963-1995, a tent with names sewn onto it, and My Bed, which in 1999 was exhibited at Tate Gallery after being shortlisted for the Turner Prize. The installation included her bed and its surroundings — including vodka, cigarette butts, blood stained knickers and condoms — just as it was when she emerged from the bed after days of depression.
Her neon works, many of which are inspired by love-related emotions and transcribed from Emin’s own handwriting, also have a personal nature, and MOCA’s exhibition will examine the importance of writing and calligraphic line in these works.
The show, curated by former MOCA director and chief curator Bonnie Clearwater, is a good fit for MOCA, which 15 years ago became the first American museum to purchase one of Emin’s works.
That acquisition, a 1995 film titled Why I Never Became a Dancer is narrated by Emin, who is frankly discussing her early teenage years and first sexual encounters. As Emin talks, viewers see one scene after another from Margate, the British seaside resort town where Emin grew up among the amusements, the clock tower, the cafes … and the vintage neon signs.
The film will be included in Angel Without You.
The exhibition, named for a new large-scale neon work Emin will create in MOCA’s courtyard, will also feature 60 other works including some of the artist’s more notable neons such as Sorry Flowers Die (1999) and I Can Feel Your Smile (2005).
“As a towering figure in Britain’s contemporary art community — and arguably one of the most significant female artists of her generation — Tracey Emin is long overdue for a solo museum exhibition in the United States,” notes Clearwater in a press release about the show, which runs Dec. 4 through March 9.
“As an early supporter of Tracey’s work, we’re thrilled to mount this unprecedented exploration of her neon sculptures — a medium that is not only appropriate to the neon-rich cityscape of South Florida, but has its origins in Emin’s hometown as captured in the film Why I Never Became a Dancer.”
Museum of Contemporary Art is at 770 N.E. 125th St., North Miami. Regular hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 1-9 p.m. Wednesday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Opening night admission is $10. Regular admission is $5, $3 for students and seniors, free for children, North Miami residents, city employees and veterans. Call 305-893-6211 or visit Mocanomi.org.
University of Miami Wynwood Gallery
Clang Boom Steam, curated by Milly Cardoso, is a showcase of works by UM students, alumni and professors — all of them men.
“The impetus for this all-male exhibition is based on research I conducted on (Danish filmmaker) Jesper Just,” Cardoso reveals. “In her article titled An Introduction to Jesper Just, critic Nina Folkersma writes (somewhat sardonically), ‘A real man is supposed to contain his emotions, to be inviolable, intellectual, pragmatic, virile and dominant. That, at least, is the image of man portrayed in most Hollywood films. Transgressing social and cinematographic conventional representations of masculinity is a crucial element of Just’s work.’
“After reading Folkersma’s conceptualization of the ‘real man’ of the current art world, I immediately thought this theme would make an interesting, provocative exhibition, particularly when applied to works by male artists affiliated with UM’s studio arts program,” she continues.
The show, titled for a 46-second song by Tom Waits, will focus on the state of masculinity in contemporary art and feature work described as mostly “sculptural pieces that represent pure power and unapologetic masculinity.”
“I want to showcase craftsmanship and skill,” Cardoso notes. “Ralph Provisero’s work for example, is very powerful, larger than life and dominant, as is Colin Sherrell’s work. Colin’s work oozes masculinity. He works on his sculptures until his hands bleed; he’s extremely dedicated.”
The exhibition, which will also include work by Kyle Trowbridge, Ryan Farrell, Eddy Lopez and Remy Bordas, opens noon to 9 p.m. Oct. 12 and runs through Oct. 25. Other upcoming events include an exhibition by Sean Black (Nov. 5-22), Annual Cane Fair (Dec. 7-20) and a show by Michelle Roy (Jan. 7-24).
UM’s Wynwood Gallery is at 2750 N.W. Third Ave., Suite 4, Miami. Regular gallery hours are noon to 5 p.m. Fridays and noon to 9 p.m. on the second Saturday of each month. Call 305-284-3161 or visit As.miami.edu/art.
Wolfsonian kicks off the season with Echoes and Origins: Italian Interwar Design, billed as an exhibition that “explores how Italy’s designers, artisans, manufacturer and corporations helped cultivate a style that embodied the Fascist regime’s concept of Italianità (Italianness), glorifying both the Roman Empire and the spirit of modernity.” The show, which opened Sept. 26, and runs through April 20.
Other exhibitions (both of which run Nov. 22 through May 18) include: Rendering War: The Murals of A.G. Santagata, which will focus on the artist’s studies for 1920s-’30s building murals created for the Association for Disabled and Invalid War Veterans; and The Birth of Rome, in which Ferruccio Ferrazzi’s study for the mosaic The Myth of Rome will be displayed for the first time. The study serves as the anchor for four focus studies of Fascist-regime era projects including the sports complex Foro Mussolini (now the Foro Italico) and the Italian Pavilion at the 1939 New York World’s Fair. A publication, the first in a series that will explore the Wolfsonian’s collection, will accompany the exhibition.
Wolfsonian is at 1001 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. Hours are noon to 6 p.m. Sunday through Tuesday and Thursday through Saturday, with extended hours until 9 p.m. on Fridays. General admission is $7, $5 for seniors students with valid ID and children 6 through 12, free for children under 6. Call 305-531-1001 or visit Wolfsonian.org.