By Michael Mills
For years the Broward County art community has been eclipsed by Miami-Dade and even Palm Beach County, with their glitzy, high-profile events such as Art Basel Miami Beach and Art Palm Beach.
Although Broward doesn’t have a Wynwood-style concentration of galleries and studios, it now has pockets of comparable art activity like FATVillage, North Beach, Flagler Village, and Wilton Drive. Museum programming has grown more adventurous as well, giving Broward a cultural cachet that has previously eluded the area.
Here’s a look at some of the potential highlights of the upcoming season:
Art and Culture Center of Hollywood: Is Hollywood’s Art and Culture Center a gallery, a museum, or some hybrid of the two? Who cares as long as the center keeps producing adventurous programming?
There are too many artists to mention participating in Echos Myron, a show in which art and music collide. There are 43, in fact, representing the creative scene in Miami from the past two decades. Priyadarshini Ray and Beatriz Monteavaro co-curated this mixed-media extravaganza, which opened Sept. 6 and runs through Nov. 2. Two smaller shows run simultaneously: It’s Okay to Cry, featuring the work of Miami-based writer-photographer Monica Uszerowicz; and Outpost, showcasing works by Indian-born mixed-media artist Sri Prabha.
From Nov. 15 to Jan. 18, the center will host Dave Muller: Too Old to Rock ‘n’ Roll. The exhibition runs concurrently with Bhakti Baxter: What Was Borrowed and Annie Buckley: The People’s Tarot. In the Project Room, Michael Dean will present a pop-up record store installation.
Now in its eighth year, the center’s Abracadabra fundraiser and exhibition will make more than 100 original works of art available to raffle ticket buyers. This innovative, interactive show opens Feb. 7 and closes when ticket holders cash in and scramble for their favorite works Mar. 13.
The Art and Culture Center is at 1650 Harrison St. Gallery hours are Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $6 for students, seniors, and children 4 to 17; free admission for members and children 3 and under. Admission is free for all the third Sunday of the month. Call 954-921-3274 or visit ArtAndCultureCenter.org.
Art Fallout, downtown Fort Lauderdale: In conjunction with National Arts and Humanities Month, art spaces throughout the downtown Fort Lauderdale area annually host Art Fallout: A Day for Contemporary Art, this year from 5 to 9 p.m. on Oct. 18. Now in its fifth season, the event has a growing roster of participants, including:
· Cadence Pop Up Gallery – an urban planning and design firm that collaborates with local artists.
· FATVillage – the self-described “micro-district” of artist studios, alternative exhibition spaces, and art-related businesses.
· Girls’ Club – the event’s original organizer will showcase Art Fallout: Unframed, an evening-long exhibition by South Florida artists; feedback on the work presented is provided via Post-It notes color-coded by group – the general public, artists, critics and judges, and kids.
· Glavovic Studio – the architecture and design firm headed by visionary Margi Glavovic Nothard.
· MAC Fine Art – a Flagler Village gallery focusing on contemporary art.
· Made in Broward at The Cottage – an alternative education center emphasizing hands-on learning and eclectic artist-driven exhibits.
· NSU Museum of Art/Fort Lauderdale – the big downtown museum.
· Radio-Active Records at Girls’ Club – an independent record store specializing in used vinyl and CDs and accessories since 2001; the shop will offer a pop-up exhibition and spin session.
ArtServe, Fort Lauderdale: This private affiliate of the Broward Cultural Division bills itself as providing “programs, services and facilities for the cultural community.” And indeed, the 25,000-square-foot venue, which shares its location with a branch of the Broward County Library, hosts classes, workshops, performances, meetings, and special events.
In October, ArtServe presents Big, a show limited to works measuring 36” x 36” or larger. Then the 2+3 Artists Organization will take over the gallery for a show by its members (Nov. 6-21), followed by Affordable Local Art (Dec. 1-Jan. 2), featuring the work of ArtServe members.
ArtBRAVO! (Dec. 1-Jan. 2) is an annual event, an open juried fine art exhibition. It’s immediately followed by the annual open-themed ArtEXPLOSION, hosted by ArtsUnited from Feb. 2 through 20.
ArtServe is at 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. Call 954-462-8190 or visit ArtServe.org.
Bear and Bird Boutique + Gallery, Lauderhill: Words like “quirky,” “offbeat,” and “eclectic” come to mind in connection with this tiny gallery, which opened in 1993 and specializes in outsider art (in the most expansive sense of the term). It’s in the 700-square-foot loft at Tate’s Comics and run by Tate’s wife, Amanda Ottati, who manages to pack startling amounts of art into her little space.
From Oct. 3 through Nov. 15, the gallery will feature Not of This Earth: An Extraterrestrial Art Invasion, an open invitational exhibit welcoming any work with an extraterrestrial, UFO, sci-fi, space alien theme. It’s billed as a “mega-show,” which suggests that Ottati will once again work her magic and present a mind-boggling volume of art.
Bear and Bird is upstairs at Tate’s Comics, 4566 N. University Drive, Lauderhill. Open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Call 954-748-0181 or visit BearAndBird.com.
Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, Fort Lauderdale: Made up of 35 acres of subtropical gardens and a historic house and outbuildings, Bonnet House is best known as a tourist destination. But the estate also hosts a couple of exhibitions every year in its cozy galleries.
In the Details: A Bonnet House Fine Artist Exhibition will run from Jan. 15 through March 1. It will be immediately followed by Impressions: A Juried Art Exhibit, running from March 3 through May 3 and featuring the work of top Florida artists. The latter is Bonnet House’s annual fundraiser, accompanied by a lavish opening reception.
Bonnet House is at 900 N. Birch Road, Fort Lauderdale. Open for tours Tuesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $20 for adults, $16 for students ages 6 to 12; free admission for members and children under 6. Call 954-563-5393 or visit BonnetHouse.org.
Broward Art Guild, Fort Lauderdale: Broward County’s oldest arts organization was founded in the late 1940s as a branch of the American Artists Professional League, then evolved into its own independent nonprofit group. A year-round exhibition calendar features competitive juried shows for local artists, most presented at the guild’s own gallery in the North Beach Arts District.
BAG goes from one extreme to another in October, from the Youth Art Competition & Exhibit (Oct. 1-10) to the adults-only Naughty Exhibit (Oct. 15-24). From Oct. 29 through Nov. 21, the guild hosts its 64th Anniversary Members’ Exhibit, followed by Small Works (Nov. 26-Dec. 19), which is limited to artworks that measure no more than 14 inches in any dimension, framing included.
The open-theme Winter Spectacular runs from Dec. 24 through Jan. 22 and is followed by a couple of themed shows: Black & White, in which all elements of the art (including frames) must be black, white, and/or gray; and Food for Thought, in which the art must be in some way food-related.
The Broward Art Guild is at 3280 N.E. 32nd St., Fort Lauderdale. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Call 954-537-3370 or visit BrowardArtGuild.org.
Coral Springs Museum of Art: For those of us requiring a very good reason to venture into far northwestern Broward County, the Coral Springs Museum is cause enough: a big, airy, light-drenched exhibition space with plate-glass windows looking out onto the lush grounds.
The museum has presented works by the legendary photographer and conservationist Clyde Butcher before. This time, Preserving Eden: Clyde Butcher’s Florida Photographs will feature three dozen new works in the artist’s trademark high-contrast black-and-white, ranging in scale from the intimate to the epic. The show opened Sept. 6 and runs through Nov. 22.
Running concurrently is Broward-based artist Wilma Bulkin Siegel’s Conversations With Veterans, a suite of mixed-media portraits. Siegel, a doctor, has previously produced similar series of portraits of Holocaust survivors and people living with HIV.
Karolina Sobeca (Sept. 13-Oct. 17) features works by the artist, whose often interactive work draws on animation, design, and new media. For Phillip Stearns (Oct. 18-Nov. 23), the Brooklyn-based artist combines disciplines as disparate as digital art, textile design, and electronics.
Because I Said So (Dec. 6-27) marks the museum debut of Kirsten Swanson Bowen, who works from the perspective of someone who spent a great deal of time in the textile design business in New York, where she also practiced mural painting and decorative finishes.
The Coral Springs Museum is at 2855 Coral Springs Drive. Hours are Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.. Admission is $6 per person, free for members. Call 954-340-5000 or visit CoralSpringsMuseum.org.
Girls’ Club, Fort Lauderdale: Since its establishment in 2006 as a private foundation and alternative display space – its founders were the artist Francie Bishop Good and her philanthropist husband, David Horvitz – Girls’ Club has provided a nurturing environment for educational programming, special events, and one-of-a-kind exhibitions.
The wrinkle is that each major show stays up for nearly a full year. This season the gallery serves up The Moment. The Backdrop. The Persona. This exhibit of drawings, paintings, videos, and new media features works by Nicole Eisenman, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Kate Gilmore, Chantal Joffe, Rosemary Laing, Lori Nix, Lisa Sanditz, Dasha Shishkin, Mickalene Thomas, and Su-en Wong. Run dates are Nov. 7 through Sept. 26. Bishop Good co-curated with gallery director Sarah Michelle Rupert.
Girls’ Club is at 117 N.E. Second St., Fort Lauderdale. Gallery hours are Wednesday-Friday, 1 to 5 p.m., with additional hours available by appointment. Call 954-828-9151 or visit GirlsClubCollection.org.
New River Fine Art, Fort Lauderdale: Of all the chic art galleries on Fort Lauderdale’s Las Olas Boulevard, New River Fine Art may be the toniest. Where else are you likely to find works by Picasso, Rembrandt, Miró, Dalí, Chagall, Matisse, Renoir, Warhol, and a few generations of the Pissarro family, not to mention dozens of contemporary artists?
Then the gallery will assemble a show drawn from its extensive collection of works by the quintessential Miami outsider artist, Purvis Young (Nov. 13-Dec. 5). For Masters, the gallery will present selections from its holdings of the Old Masters, Impressionists, and 20th-century and contemporary masters listed above.
New River Fine Art is at 914 E. Las Olas Blvd. Call 954-524-2100 for hours and additional information, or visit NewRiverFineArt.com.
NSU Museum of Art/Fort Lauderdale: Fort Lauderdale’s flagship Museum of Art presents its first full season that reflects the new leadership of director and curator Bonnie Clearwater, who was in creative control of the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami during its heady heyday.
First up is Café Dolly: Picabia, Schnabel, Willumsen, which brings together the work of three artists-as-provocateurs: the great French Dadaist Francis Picabia, who was also an underappreciated figurative painter; the controversial Julian Schnabel, notorious for his early-career “plate paintings;” and the lesser-known Danish visionary J.F. Willumsen. The show runs from Oct. 12 through Feb. 1.
American Scene Photography: Martin Z. Margulies Collection draws on the extensive collection of Margulies, an MoA/FL benefactor who has collected photographs for more than two decades. Clearwater curated the show, which runs from Nov. 2 through Mar. 22 and features works by such photographic giants as Lewis Hine, Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, Berenice Abbott, Weegee, William Eggleston, Lee Friedlander, Cindy Sherman, and Gregory Crewdson.
Two complementary shows run from Feb. 26 through May 31. Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera from the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection features more than 30 works by the tempestuous Mexican couple, supplemented by works from the museum’s own collection of Mexican Modernism. 20th Century Mexican Art from the Stanley and Pearl Goodman Collection features highlights from the collection of the longtime MoA/FL benefactors, including works by José Clemente Orozco, Rufino Tamayo, Leonora Carrington, and, of course, Rivera and Kahlo.
The Museum of Art/Fort Lauderdale is at 1 E. Las Olas Blvd. Hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for ages 18+, $7 for seniors 65+ and military, and $5 for students; free admission for members, ages 12 and under, and NSU students, faculty, and staff. Call 954-525-5500 or visit MoAFL.org.
Studio 18 in the Pines, Pembroke Pines: Lots of cities pay lip service to the idea of supporting the arts. Pembroke Pines talks the talk but also walks the walk with Studio 18, an ambitious complex of artist studios and display space.
Now open and running through Oct. 16, the compound’s gallery presents Rock, Paper, Photo! The show pairs two artists with a Beastie Boys connection: photographer Sunny Bak, who shot the gatefold image of the band for its Licensed to Ill album, and Cey Adams, the graphic designer who created the album cover’s old-fashioned lettering.
Studio 18 in the Pines is at 1101 Poinciana Drive. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Call 954-961-6067.