Do not miss these top four Miami art exhibits at The Bass, ICA, PAMM and MOCA. Whatever your medium of choice, there’s an exhibit for you — furniture, fiber sculpture, sculptures with found objects, tapestries, paintings, photography– you name it. There’s even a barbershop where you can get a haircut! For my tastes, they are some of the best exhibits in awhile, and happen to be all at once. Just in time, too, for summer when it just seems there’s more time.
Leading the lineup is the work of Colombian artist Beatriz Gonzalez: A Retrospective, now at the PAMM. Vivid colors that we love in Miami, and unexpected use of materials, from recycled furniture (beds, tables, cribs) which serve as a tableau for a painting, curtains and silkscreen prints, to two dimensional oil on canvas paintings show the evolution of the artist over decades.
For those who know something of Colombian history, the exhibit will have special meaning as she chronicles the violence of the civil war and high profile politicians. And even if you’re not familiar with Colombian history, the show has social and political messages that are bound to resonate in some ways with everyone. Works are culled from the artists’ personal collection as well as from public and private collections in Colombia, the United States and Europe. Perez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd. Open daily except Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Show runs until September 1, 2019.
As part of ICA Miami’s Design Series, the museum is host to one of the more famous names out of Italian and, for that matter, world design history: designer and architect Ettore Sottsass. Famous for his abstract furniture and decorative objects, Sottsass broke the boundaries of design with his boldness, vibrant colors, use of laminate and plastic and composition. The exhibit presents 50 of the seminal artist’s works including furniture, objects, ceramics and drawings in addition to 53 photographs.
The highlight is the furniture he created for the Memphis Group, a collective he founded in the early ‘80’s that drew from Art Déco and Pop Art to turn traditional ideas of home furnishings upside down. His legacy continues today, his design serving as an inspiration in the design world.
The exhibition is the first in a series of biannual shows at I.C.A. Miami to highlight advances in contemporary design and its relationship to art. Ettore Sottsass and the Social Factory. Institute of Contemporary Art, 61 NE 41st St, Phone: +1 305-901-5272. Open daily except Monday. Show runs until October 6, 2019.
The fiber artist uses natural fibers to create large woven panels, hanging tapestries, columns of cascading colors in varied textures, scale and technique. A highlight is the larger than life installation Escalade Beyond Chromatic Lands for the Arsenale at the 2017 Venice Biennale.
Standing away from one of her fiber sculptures, you get a sense of their architectural scope, the interplay of vibrant colors, and the movement of loose thread or draping cloth that is nothing short of exciting. “Sheila Hicks: Campo Abierto (Open Field).” Through September 29 at The Bass Museum of Art, 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-673-7530; thebass.org. Open Wednesday through Sunday.
The final not to be missed exhibit, is at the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami (MOCA). “PÒTOPRENS: The Urban Artists of Port-au-Prince” brings together the work of over 20 artists working in the Haitian capital. The exhibition features a diverse group of sculptures including sequined Vodou flags, wonderful beaded tapestries I coveted, stone and wood carvings, and found object assemblages which show the rich creativity and resourcefulness of the city’s artists.
Then there are actual skulls embellished with beading and other decorative items that call to mind Damien Hirst’s famous rhinestone skull. Do not miss the fascinating film showing the artists at work with interviews. Finally, an installation pays tribute to Port-au-Prince’s innumerable barbershops, unique sculptural objects in their own right. Often constructed and furnished with off cast materials, the barbershops are distinguished by vivid portraits of both foreign and domestic athletes, rappers, and models. Organized by Richard Fleming, the installation at MOCA features newly commissioned portraits by painter Michel Lafleur, and provides visitors the opportunity to get a haircut from a Haitian barber.
Co-curated by Haitian-American artist and curator Edouard Duval-Carrié and British artist and curator Leah Gordon, and organized by Pioneer Works Founding Artistic Director Gabriel Florenz with special advisor Jean-Daniel Lafontant. “PÒTOPRENS: The Urban Artists of Port-au-Prince” on view until August 11, 2019. MOCA, 770 NE 125th St, North Miami Phone: +1 305-893-6211 Open daily except Monday.