MIAMI—As I write this, it is 78 degrees, feels like 200, and will dip into the low 50s next week. Good luck packing for Miami Art Week, a catch-all term for the seven-day bombardment of public art, pop-up projects, installations, “activations,” “interventions,” and of course, fairs — big fairs, small fairs, satellite fairs, and everything else that could be even loosely described as a fair. To make matters more stressful, this year’s Art Week takes place immediately after Thanksgiving weekend, without the usual week in between to get mentally prepared, meditate, RSVP to events, and de-bloat. Our guide this year features a few selections that are worth seeing, but like any honest map to this annual arts extravaganza, our cheat sheet is by no means comprehensive. We suggest you arm yourself with a strong Cuban cafecito and take to exploring.
Before we get to all that, though, an important announcement: a strike for climate action is taking place on Friday, December 6 from 11 am to 2pm at the Stephen P. Clark Government Center in Downtown Miami. It’s organized by a broad coalition of environmental and climate justice groups, including the Florida Youth Climate Strike; Extinction Rebellion Miami; Fridays for Future Miami; the CLEO Institute, Animal Rebellion Miami; 350 South Florida; and Miami Sierra Club.
Unless you’ve switched off all news alerts, you probably know climate change is an alarming issue worldwide, but rising sea levels place Miami among the most at-risk cities. Several presentations and projects during this year’s Art Week address the crippling effect of climate change on our planet, from an exhibition curated by Albie Alexander at the Brickell City Center that “pays homage to Mother Nature” to Facebook Art Department’s Miami debut Futurescape Miami: Skyline to Shoreline. While I genuinely believe in art’s power to create change, let’s make sure to walk the walk, not just talk the talk — go to the strike!
If you work in the art world or are obligated to come to Miami every December against your will for any other reason, you’re likely feeling more jaded than enthusiastic right about now. Hopefully this guide will serve as a glass-half-full reminder that whatever else Miami Art Week may be — tacky, enervating, filled with stultifying traffic — it’s never boring. In a project that opened December 1st on the beachfront at Lincoln Road, Argentine artist Leandro Erlich is presenting more than 60 sculptures of cars seemingly covered in sand for “Order of Importance,” his largest public installation yet, curated by Ximena Caminos and commissioned by the City of Miami Beach. In Little Haiti, Venezuelan-born artist Harif Guzman (aka HACULLA) will mount his timely interactive installation “The Last Mile,” a 9-by-fifteen foot wall structure and tunnel that simulates thousands of immigrants’ daily experience of Trump’s border wall (open to the public starting December 4th.) For her public artwork “The Cloaking” (2019), up through January 18, the U.S.-born, Dominican Republic-raised artist Joiri Minaya wrapped the statues of Spanish colonial settlers Juan Ponce de León and Christopher Columbus in Miami’s Bayfront Park in bright, floral-patterned fabrics. Minaya’s hand-drawn designs on the fabrics depict plants traditionally used by native people, like the manchineel tree and the coontie palm, to communicate the role that so-called “tropical” aesthetics has played in the colonial project of cultural erasure.
Oh, and word around town is critic Jerry Saltz and artist Marilyn Minter are organizing an event with Playboy Magazine.
Finally, in preparation for this year’s festivities and for your own sanity, I strongly suggest you follow @jerrygogosian on Instagram if you don’t already. This sassy profile filled with cheeky art world memes is perfect for scrolling through during what is sure to be a block-long line for sandwiches that will run out as soon as you reach the counter on Basel’s opening day — and will provide much-needed catharsis when a stressed-out gallerist gives you attitude (in all fairness, they are extremely overwhelmed; most dealers I know cite this week as their least favorite every year.)
In line with that, as my wonderful colleague Monica Uszerowicz reminds us every year, please be nice to Lyft drivers and service workers. And why not offer a smile and an unprompted thank-you to any art handlers you encounter? In my opinion, they’re the real unsung heroes of Miami Art Week, who remain behind-the-scenes as they diligently transport, install, tweak, shadow-box, and light everything we see, making it look a hundred times better than it inevitably will once it’s hanging above your couch.
When: December 5–8 / Thursday: 3pm to 8pm; Friday–Saturday: noon–8pm; Sunday: noon–6pm
Where: Miami Beach Convention Center, 1901 Convention Center Drive, Miami Beach
Art Basel Miami Beach is to the smaller satellite fairs in Miami what Cézanne was to modern art. Known in industry-speak as “the main fair,” this year’s edition of Art Basel Miami Beach will feature 269 exhibiting galleries from all over the world. In addition to the usual sections — “Nova” (where galleries present works created in the last three years by one, two, or three artists); “Positions” (single-artist projects); “Survey” (art historical projects); “Kabinett” (focused, curated exhibitions in a separate space within a gallery’s booth); and “Edition” (prints, multiples, and other editioned works) — the fair will inaugurate a brand-new category, “Meridians.” Located in the convention center’s new Grand Ballroom and curated by Museo Tamayo in Mexico City’s director Magalí Arriola, this separate section will showcase works deemed unconventional for an art fair, including large-scale sculpture, video projections, and installations. The art history nerd in me is especially excited for the restaging of American artist Tina Girouard’s groundbreaking 1977 performance Pinwheel, organized by Los Angeles-based gallery Anat Ebgi in collaboration with curator Lumi Tan of The Kitchen. It’s the only live performance at the fair and will occur once daily at 3pm from Thursday through Sunday.
Art Basel also offers a robust program of panels and conversations, some more provocative than others. A highlight this year is “Stonewall at 50: What Now?” a discussion on whether LGBTQIA+ culture has been “normalized,” moderated by MoMA Media and Performance chief curator Stuart Comer. The talk will take place on Thursday, December 5th at 5pm at the auditorium in the convention center, and doesn’t even require an RSVP.
Pro tip: the fair’s layout is notoriously dizzying, for Basel veterans and first-time visitors alike. Here is the central floor plan to study before plunging deep into the belly of the beast. (Meridians has its own floor plan, here.)
When: December 4–8 / Wednesday–Saturday: 11am–8pm; Sunday: 11am–6pm
Where: One Herald Plaza, NE 14th Street & Biscayne Bay, Miami
In the art fair family tree that I am hopefully helping you build in your head, Art Miami is the mother of the satellite fairs. Under its umbrella are Aqua Art Miami as well as Context Art Fair — both listed below — but the popular and widely-attended Art Miami is definitely the main attraction. This week, it celebrates its 30th anniversary with 170 galleries from more than 20 countries. While the fair flaunts artworks by well-known artists, like David Hockney and Keith Haring, it’s also an excellent place to discover new names. The ethereal watercolors of Kim McCarty, who will show at David Klein Gallery’s booth, remind me of Marlene Dumas’s haunting representations of women; Anthony James’s Birch and Portal Series sculptures at Opera Gallery’s booth are dystopian monuments to nature frozen in time.
When: December 4–8 / Wednesday–Saturday: 11am–8pm; Sunday: 11am–6pm
Where: One Herald Plaza, NE 14th Street & Biscayne Bay, Miami
This smaller offshoot of Art Miami is located in the same building and offers works by primarily emerging artists. Most impressive is its focus on mediums you won’t typically see at an art fair — two sections, CONTEXT Video and CONTEXT Sound Positions, will show experimental films and video art and sound art, respectively. At CONTEXT Sculpture Park, you’ll be able to see a range of contemporary sculpture by artists such as Gilberto Romero, Punk Me Tender, See Young Deok, and Zachary Knudson. Also not to miss is Sounds of Freedom, a joint exhibition of works by Cuban multidisciplinary artist and activist Leonor Anthony and jazz photographer Roberto Polillo.
Art Africa Miami
When: December 4–8 / Wednesday-Saturday: noon–7pm; Sunday: noon-5pm
Where: 920 NW 2nd Avenue, Miami
Art Africa was founded in 2011 as a showcase of contemporary art from the African Diaspora and takes place each year in the historic Black neighborhood of Overtown. A screening of Everything Must Fall, Rehad Desai’s documentary about the student movement against rising education costs in South Africa, is among the fair’s diverse programmatic offerings (tickets here.)
When: December 5–8 / 11am–8pm
Where: Ward Rooming House, 249 NW 9th Street, Miami
This joint art fair and exhibition, now in its second year, is organized by champions of African-American art known as Hampton Arts Lovers. Like Art Africa, it takes place in Overtown, with an exhibition in a converted building that used to serve as a safehouse for Black and Indigenous people during segregation. The premise of the Point Comfort Art Show in Miami is really special: bringing the collections of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) museums to a diverse public. This year’s edition will host selections from the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art across two joint exhibitions: Home: The Beverly Buchanan Collection and Barrington Watson: The Spelman Years. The related fair, where you can purchase other artworks, will be held in an adjoining climate-controlled tent.
When: December 5–8 / Thursday: noon–9pm; Friday–Saturday: 11am–9pm; Sunday: 11am–6pm
Where: The Aqua Hotel, 1530 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach
Taking its name from the modern little boutique hotel where it is housed, this sister fair of Art Miami is celebrating its 15th anniversary with 60 exhibitors and a slew of events organized in partnership with the SHIM Art Network. Take a break from the hundreds of works by emerging and mid-career artists on display with a tarot reading by artist Deming Harriman at BBAM! Gallery’s booth in Room 226 on Saturday and Sunday.
When: December 4–8 / Wednesday: 1pm–8pm; Thursday: 11am–8pm; Friday: noon–8pm; Saturday: noon–8pm; Sunday: noon–6pm
Where: Meridian Avenue & 19th Street, Miami Beach
The theme of this year’s Design Miami/ (note the chic forward slash!) is “Elements: Water,” a follow-up to the theme “Elements: Earth” previously explored by curatorial director Aric Chen for the Switzerland iteration of the fair in June. Notably, the collectible design fair will inaugurate its new quarters in the six-acre Pride Park, a parking lot turned public greenspace next to the Miami Beach Botanical Garden. I adore this fair because it always blurs what I thought was the clearly-defined line separating art and functional design. See for example Virgil Abloh’s “sinking” furniture at Carpenters Workshop Gallery’s stand this year, mesmerizing pieces that look like they’re descending into the floor. Inspired by acqua
alta, the peak tides dangerously flooding Venice, Abloh’s work is at once graceful and ominous.
Faena Festival: The Last Supper
When: December 2–8 / programming hours vary and are listed here
Where: Faena Forum, 3201 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, and other locations in the Faena Art District. For more details, see above link
The second annual Faena Festival, located in Miami Beach’s “Faena District” (a six-block stretch of Collins Avenue from 32nd to 36th Street), will tackle the intertwining of spirituality, food, and religion — “taking both the pulpit and the kitchen as its points of departure,” according to the press release. Think indulgence, sacrifice, and votive offerings but also feasts, fasting, and the communal experience of shared meals. The line-up of site-specific installations, commissions, and screenings for this wildly ambitious festival definitely exceeds my word count for this piece, but it includes a vodou flag installation by Haitian artist Myrlande Constant, two massive Buddha sculptures by Chinese artist Zhang Huan, and a series of “mobile video installations” on an LED billboard boat traveling across the Miami Beach waterways from noon through 6pm, among many other artworks and projects.
Mana Contemporary at 777 International Mall
When: December 5–9 / 10am–9pm (later some nights)
Where: 777 International Mall, 145 E. Flagler Street, Miami
For Miami Art Week, Mana Contemporary once again opens the doors of its downtown studio complex, where residing local and visiting artists as well as creative organizations will present a series of daily performances and activations: a live podcast with Orchid.FM, DJ sets at the Dale Zine window, and a slew of after-parties, among others. The femme reggaeton duo Niña will perform on Friday night, while the aptly-titled Annual Art Basel Distraction Party, featuring more than 20 artists, performers, and musicians, starts on Saturday night at 10pm. And all along East Flagler in Downtown Miami, different storefront windows will exhibit works by local artists 24 hours a day.
Note that Mana’s programming also includes events in their Wynwood locations, such as Pinta Art Fair at 318 NW 23rd Street, where you can see works by blue-chip as well as lesser known Latin American artists. You’ll find Mana’s complete list of programs in both its downtown and Wynwood locations during Art Week here.
When: December 5–8 / Thursday: 2–7pm; Friday and Saturday: 11am–7pm; Sunday: 11am–5pm
Where: Ice Palace Studios, 1400 North Miami Avenue, Miami
As in previous iterations, the 17th edition of NADA Miami held at the labyrinthine but cozy Ice Palace Film Studios will be teeming with amazing art at a fraction of Art Basel prices. For budding collectors, this is the fair to discover new talent. Personally, I also view NADA as a kind of sampling plate of New York’s most exciting galleries in the emerging to mid-career sector — while its exhibitors are international, I counted a whopping 34 from the Big Apple. What to see? Kaleidoscopic paintings by Richard Tinkler at 56 Henry’s booth; boisterous works by Carmen Winant spelling out “WOMEN ARE FURIOUS WE WILL BE FREE!” in glass lettering at the booth of Fortnight Institute; and Caryatid (2019), a large outdoor sculpture by Carolyn Salas presented by the ever-surprising Mrs. Gallery from Queens in the fair’s Special Projects sector.
Fridge Art Fair: The Fridge Art Fair Farewell Victory World Tour
When: “VIP” preview is December 4 / 3:59pm–5:55pm; other opening hours here
Where: Eurostar’s Langford Hotel, 121 SE 1st Street, Miami
Fridge was “a fake fair last year,” co-founder Eric Ginsburg tells me via e-mail — just a small pop-up at the Langford Hotel rooftop that hilariously boasted a full waiting list on its website. This year, he says, they’ll actually have a fair on the second floor of the hotel. The Fridge Art Fair Farewell Victory World Tour will honor the city of Baltimore, filmmaker John Waters, and Ginsburg himself; its list of exhibitors includes “Oatmeal the Panda” and “Yoko Ono.” Is this all just art world satire, à la @jerrygogosian? Hard to say. But as Ginsburg states on the fair’s website: “The Farewell Tour will exceed all possible expectations and will go down in history as the standard by which all future Art Fairs will be judged.”
Miami Street Photography Festival
When: December 5–8; hours vary and are listed here
Where: HistoryMiami Museum, 101 West Flagler Street, Miami
This annual street and documentary photography festival, held at the Smithsonian affiliate HistoryMiami Museum in Downtown Miami, presents seven different exhibitions comprising more than 200 prints. They include works by the finalists and winners of several different MSPF competitions for contemporary street photography, local photography, and other categories, all explained in detail here. As far as events, don’t miss this year’s “street battle,” where two teams of street photographers are given only 24 hours to create the most compelling images. They’ll face off on Friday at 2pm in the museum’s auditorium in what promises to be a fierce showdown.
PRIZM Art Fair
When: December 4–8 / 10am–7pm
Where: Alfred I. DuPont Building, 169 East Flagler Street, Miami
PRIZM art fair, founded by Mikhaile Solomon and now in its seventh year, brings much-deserved visibility to artists from the African Diaspora. In addition to the main sector, where 10 exhibiting galleries will show works by 42 artists from 15 countries, PRIZM will also mount Love in the Time of Hysteria, a group exhibition curated by William Cordova, Ryan Dennis, Naiomy Guerrero, Oshun Layne, and Solomon that delves deep into the often challenging exercise of love and compassion. “How do we love ourselves with sweet defiance?” asks a poignantly-written press release for the show. Pay attention to the fair’s substantial ancillary programming, too. As part of PRIZM Perform, artist Maya Freelon presents The Creation Station, an interactive workshop where participants collectively create a tissue quilt as they share stories in a safe, comforting space; a series of panels touch on a range of pressing topics, from preserving Afrian Diasporic visual culture to the value of art criticism.
PULSE Art Fair
When: December 5–8 / Thursday: 1pm–7pm; Friday–Saturday: 10am–7pm; Sunday: 10am–5pm
Where: Indian Beach Park, 4601 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach
They had me at “an oasis of calm in the rough seas of Miami Art Week.” Located at Indian Beach Park and flaunting cocktails and hammocks in a waterfront setting, this relatively tranquil but still lively fair celebrates its 15th anniversary this year, and there are several projects to look out for. As part of PULSE Play, dedicated to video and new media art, Black & White Gallery/Project Space will present the work of Gregory Perkel, a truly fascinating artist who moved from the Soviet Union to the U.S. in 1977. Titled Savonarola Suite (2019), his installation at PULSE consists of photographs and a diptych video collage depicting the glossy magazines where he learned about the American art world going up in flames — a prescient analogy of an oversaturated art market. American multimedia artist Sandra Muss, the 2019 Pulse Project Artist, will have two site-specific installations at the fair: Portals: Dreams of Flight and Open Doors. Also worth mentioning is PULSE Perspectivas, a series of bilingual (English/Spanish) talks and programs.
When: December 5–8 / Thursday-Friday: 6pm–1am; Saturday: 1pm–1am; Sunday: 1pm–6pm
Where: 2210 NW Miami Court, Miami
A self-professed “experiential” art fair, SATELLITE has relocated to Wnywood after three years in Miami Beach and Downtown Miami. Founded and organized by a group of artists, SATELLITE invites not only galleries but also artist-run spaces, non-profits, and individual artists to participate. Like last year’s, this edition will feature an extensive performance art program curated by the Brooklyn-based group Performance is Alive.
When: December 4–8; 11am–8pm
Where: 801 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach
This year, Scope will house 134 exhibitors in its usual pavilion on the sand. Notable in this edition is OASIS, an inaugural multidisciplinary program that includes music performances, panels, installations, and a host of wellness offerings, from guided meditations to spa treatments, in the fair’s atrium. Also new is Focus | Art China, a section comprised of six exhibiting galleries showing Chinese contemporary artists both established and emerging.
When: December 4–8 / Wednesday–Saturday: 11am–7pm; Sunday: 11am–5pm
Where: Ocean Drive and 12th Street, Miami Beach
It’s an exciting year for UNTITLED Miami Beach, the fair situated on Ocean Drive and 12th Street that’s celebrated for being highly curated, architecturally mindful, and pleasant to navigate. The 2019 edition launches Monuments, a new program of large-scale, site-specific installations such as “It is not down on any map; true places never are” (2019). This kinetic outdoor sculpture by collaborative artists Antonia Wright and Ruben Millares, presented by Luis De Jesus Gallery in Los Angeles, consists of a group of flags sliding up and down on a flagpole in an allegory of complicated global hierarchies. UNTITLED is also partnering with the Facebook Art Department, who is participating in Miami Art Week for the first time with an exhibition titled Futurescape Miami: From Shoreline to Skyline. All of the works in that show address the effects of climate change on urban environments — Finnish artists Pekka Niittyvirta and Timo Ah’s light installation, for instance, is an admonition of rising sea levels. And there’s so much more: in the Special Projects section, curated by UNTITLED artistic director Omar Lopez-Chahoud and guest curator Jordan Stein, Benrubi Gallery will show video footage of Coral Projects’s “Everglades Art Lab” (2019), a series of sustainable installations in the Everglades. “All our supplies are either ecological materials from the site or leave a neutral footprint, if not a positive impact, on the Everglades,” reads a statement from the artists on UNTITLED’s website. I have a feeling this might be one of the most moving works I’ll encounter during my fair excursions.
Museums and Collections to Visit:
When: Click here for regular hours
Where: 2100 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach
Opening right before Art Week, Mickalene Thomas’s exhibition Better Nights transforms the Bass Museum galleries into an immersive environment inspired by parties thrown by the artist’s mother as well as a play she performed in and organized in the 1970s. We’ll find works by both Thomas and emerging and established artists of color in a constructed domestic interior evocative of the period. Also opening before the fairs is Lara Favaretto: Blind Spot, an exhibition of paintings, sculptures, and installations by the Italian artist. Finally, don’t miss Haegue Yang’s In the Cone of Uncertainty, a survey of works from the last decade of Yang’s career in the first and second floors of the museum — among them her mysterious and entrancing light sculptures.
When: Miami Art Week Hours: December 3–7 / 9am–4:30pm; click here for regular hours
Where: 23 NE 41st Street, Miami
From Day to Day, the privately-run de la Cruz Collection’s 2019-2020 exhibition, brings together works by powerful younger talents, like Tomm El-Saieh, alongside such established figures as Félix González-Torres and Rufino Tamayo.
Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami
When: Extended Miami Art Week hours: December 1–9 / 10am–5pm.
Where: 770 NE 125th Street, North Miami
It’s kind of shocking that the prolific Chilean artist Cecilia Vicuña did not have a major solo exhibition in the United States until 2016, but hats off to the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans for filling that gap. Cecilia Vicuña: About to Happen, which has been traveling since its inception, has now landed at the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami (MOCA). The show gathers Vicuña’s intelligently conceptual and boldly political works produced over four decades, from sculptures and drawings to performances and site-specific installations; notably, for the first time in the exhibition’s tour, it will also include painting. Vicuña has experimented with the quipu, an ancient Andean writing system based on knotted strings that was suppressed by colonial settlers, in myriad ways throughout her career. An installation in this exhibition titled Burnt Quipu (2018), comprised of dyed wool hanging from the ceiling to the floor, is the artist’s tribute to recent fires in the West Coast; in a participatory performance at the museum this Saturday at 10am, Vicuña will lead the creation of a “living quipu.” MOCA also pays tribute to another female artist, the late French-Mexican Surrealist Alice Rahon, in Poetic Invocations, the first solo show of Rahon’s work in the U.S. in 55 years.
Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami
When: Miami Art Week Hours: December 3–8 / Tuesday: 8pm–10pm; Wednesday: 11am–7pm; Thursday: 11am–5pm; Friday: 11am–10pm; Saturday and Sunday: 11am–7pm
Where: 61 NE 41st Street, Miami
In addition to Sterling Ruby’s first comprehensive museum exhibition, which opened last month, several new shows will debut during Art Week at the ICA: a presentation of Louise Nevelson’s assemblages from the 1970s; a site-specific installation by Carlos Sandoval de León; Agustín Fernández’s Armadura Series of armor-inspired works; and a newly-commissioned video by artist Wong Ping. There will be a free public reception at 8pm on Tuesday, but make sure you RSVP here. Off-site in the Miami Design District, the ICA is also presenting Yayoi Kusama’s hypnotic “All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins” (2016), the first of the artist’s beloved “infinity mirror rooms” to be installed in Miami (another will be at the Rubell Museum’s new space, mentioned below.) There’s free admission to Kusama’s installation every Thursday on a first come, first serve basis, and timed $15 tickets available for Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
Jewish Museum of Florida – Florida International University
When: Click here for regular hours.
Where: 301 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach
The 85-year-old artist and Miami Beach native Mira Lehr has a long history of instigating radical change through art — in 1960, she founded Continuum, a co-op for women artists excluded from the traditional, male-dominated art world, and she would go on to champion her female peers for decades to come. Her current exhibition of color-drenched paintings and aerial sculptures at The Jewish Museum, Mira Lehr: A Walk in the Garden, shifts the focus of her work to environmental activism, rightly earning Lehr the dual label of “eco-feminist artist.”
When: Extended hours for Miami Art Week: December 2–8; Monday–Wednesday and Friday–Sunday: 10am–6pm; Thursday: 10am–5pm
Where: 1103 Biscayne Boulevard, Miami
The Pérez Art Museum Miami, also known as PAMM, isn’t opening any exhibitions during Art Week this year, but the shows already on view are well worth a visit. My first stop will be Teresita Fernández: Elemental, a sprawling retrospective of the Miami native best known for her enveloping public installations that summon natural phenomena. Among the more than 50 works by Fernández displayed at PAMM is Fire (2005), a circular installation consisting of hand-dyed silk threads that evokes flickering flames as viewers walk around it. Another exhibition, The Other Side of Now: Foresight in Contemporary Caribbean Art, poses the question “what might a Caribbean future look like?” with newly-commissioned works by 14 artists challenging pervasive narratives of chaos and disaster in the region. And What Carried Us Over: Gifts from Gordon W. Bailey showcases a selection of works donated to the museum by collector Gordon W. Bailey, many of them by self-taught artists who came up in the Deep South during the Jim Crow era, like Lonnie Holley. PAMM will also host its recurring Thursday night Art Week party, PAMM Presents, this year featuring live music by the Chicago-based soul artist Jamila Woods (that’s only open to PAMM sustaining members and above as well as VIP passholders to some of the art fairs, see here for details.)
The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse
When: Extended hours for Miami Art Week: December 2–8 / Monday–Saturday: 9am–5pm; Sunday: 9am–2pm
Where: 591 NW 27th Street, Miami
The Margulies Collection celebrates its 20th anniversary this year with a new exhibition candidly titled Can It Really Be 20 Years Already? featuring works by Magdalena Abakanowicz, Franz West, Isamu Noguchi, Tony Oursler, and many more culled from Martin Z. Margulies’s veritable trove of contemporary art. Also, in case you didn’t know, the Collection’s annual breakfast during Art Week is pretty much legendary. It’s open to the public Wednesday-Friday from 9am onwards.
Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum — Florida International University
When: Click here for regular hours
Where: Modesto Maidique Campus, 10975 SW 17th Street, Miami
Florida International University’s campus museum is the current venue of Art after Stonewall, 1969-1989, the traveling survey of works exploring the LGBTQ libereation movement that debuted at the Leslie-Lohman Museum and NYU’s Grey Art Gallery earlier this year. Also on view are South Beach, 1977-1986, an exhibition of Gary Monroe’s photographs of South Beach’s Jewish residents in the 1970s and ’80s; and Connectivity, featuring selections from the museum’s permanent collection.
When: open daily 11am–7pm; closed Tuesdays
Where: 299 NW 25th Street, Miami
The brand-new Museum of Graffiti in Wynwood opens to the public on December 5 with the goal of educating the public on the graffiti art movement, from its origins in the New York subways in the 1970s through the present. In addition to a permanent exhibition, the Museum will feature eleven exterior murals and a gift shop brimming with limited edition merchandise by top graffiti artists.
When: Extended hours for Miami Art Week: December 4–December 8 / Wednesday–Friday: 9am–5pm; Saturday–Sunday: 10am–5pm (free admission all week)
Where: 1100 NW 23 Street, Miami
Don and Mera Rubell are Miami art world legends: while other collectors were making market-approved purchases, they took a chance on emerging, lesser-known, and underappreciated artists, like Miami fixture Purvis Young. The Rubell Museum, previously known as the Rubell Family Collection, will open its brand-new, 100,000-square-foot building in Allapattah during Art Week — likely one of this year’s most anticipated developments in the local art scene. The massive inaugural exhibition will feature more than 300 works by 100 artists drawn entirely from the Rubells’ collection of global contemporary art and will include early career works acquired by the couple (for instance, a gem by Rosemarie Trockel from 1986); paintings by American artists featured in the watershed traveling exhibition 30 Americans; a survey of German artists; installations by contemporary Los Angeles artists; and two immersive pieces by Yayoi Kusama (including one of her “infinity mirrored rooms.”)
When: Opening December 4, exact hours TBD
Where: 2270 NW 23rd St, Miami
Also opening in the neighborhood is El Espacio 23, a private museum housing the collection of real estate developer and PAMM namesake Jorge Pérez, with an exhibition organized by Colombian curator José Roca. Allapattah is a working-class neighborhood that’s quickly becoming an “art district,” and fears of gentrification and displacement are well-founded. Pérez says he will engage the surrounding community and give local artists opportunities to exhibit, but as we enjoy his and the Rubells’ doubtlessly impressive collections, we should be wary of how their ventures are affecting people.
The Wolfsonian — Florida International University
When: Special hours for Miami Art Week: December 2–December 8 / Monday–Saturday, 10am–6pm; Sunday: noon–6pm (free admission all week)
Where: 1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach
An exhibition of caricatures by Cuban artists; another tracing Art Deco from Europe to the United States; a trove of objects collected by the museum’s founder, Micky Wolfson, Jr., as early as age 12 — these are all on view at The Wolfsonian, FIU’s museum, library, and research center. It’s one of the country’s largest university collections, and it’s located right in Miami Beach, so you can swing by for a visit after hitting one of the fairs.
When: December 2–8 / Monday–Thursday: 10:30am–11:30pm; Friday–Saturday: 10:30am–midnight; Sunday: 10:30am–8pm
Where: 2520 NW 2nd Avenue, Miami
It feels fitting to end this guide with Wynwood Walls, a staple of the Miami arts scene. This revered exhibition of street and graffiti art happens to be celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. It’s local, free, and open to the public, as all things artistic should be, really. Get a sneak peek of this year’s walls here.
MTV’s The Exhibit Is Back With an Inflatable Dolphin
Episode four, in which artists tackled themes of justice and injustice, was the most lifeless of the reality TV show so far.
Florida Principal Ousted Over “Pornographic” Michelangelo Sculpture
Parents complained that the famous sculpture was shown to their sixth graders.
The Milton Resnick and Pat Passlof Foundation Presents The Feminine in Abstract Painting
Curated by Jennifer Samet and Andrea Belag, this group exhibition in NYC explores the feminine through aesthetics, as opposed to identity or gender.
Tickets to Sold-Out Vermeer Show Are Going for Hundreds
The online resale market for the Rijksmuseum’s smash exhibition is booming, with tickets selling on eBay for over $2K.
NYU Steinhardt Opens 2023 MFA Thesis Exhibitions
Taking place at 80WSE Gallery in New York’s Greenwich Village, Part I is on view from late March through April while Part II opens in May.
Miniature Worlds: Joseph Cornell, Ray Johnson, Yayoi Kusama
Through small-scale works, this exhibition at the Katonah Museum of Art in New York examines Cornell’s prominent role in the lives and careers of Johnson and Kusama.
Three Looted Antiquities at the Met Repatriated to Turkey
Nine other repatriated works were seized from Met Trustee Shelby White, whose collection was subject to a criminal investigation.
This week, the world’s lightest paint, Pakistan’s feminist movement, World Puppy Day, and were some of Vermeer’s paintings created by his daughter?
The Wider World and Scrimshaw
On March 28, join the New Bedford Whaling Museum online and in-person for a symposium on global carving traditions from across the Pacific Rim.
Who Will Decide on the Future of a Miami Native Burial Ground?
Native activists say sacred remains and objects dug up from a Brickell construction site should remain there, but mega-developer Jorge Pérez is pushing back.
How Can a Curator Approach South Asian Futurisms?
How do I acknowledge my shortcomings while reckoning with obscured histories and the exclusion of subaltern narratives in the fine art landscape? A working checklist for curators.
MCA Chicago Presents On Stage: Frictions
Will Rawls, Shamel Pitts | TRIBE, and Barak adé Soleil explore Blackness, queerness, movement, and dance in performances at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago.
The Complicated Legacy of Camilo Egas
The Ecuadorian painter, a leading figure of Latin America’s Indigenismo art movement, has been both praised and scorned for his representation of Indigenous peoples.
Tom Jones Zeroes in on Ho-Chunk Visibility
“I think about the young kids, the teenagers, and I think being able to see yourself represented in art is so powerful,” says the artist.