The Miami Design District (MDD) is gearing up for an artistic extravaganza like no other as it welcomes Art Week 2023.
This cultural phenomenon promises a visual feast for art enthusiasts, with a dazzling array of installations and exhibitions scattered throughout the district and beyond. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the must-see highlights of this year’s Miami Art Week, providing insights into each unique experience that awaits visitors.
Samuel Ross Benches: Functional Art in the Heart of Miami
The Miami Design District is set to unveil a captivating permanent installation by British Artist and Designer Samuel Ross. Under the umbrella of his industrial design studio SR_A, Ross has crafted three distinctive bench designs that will adorn public spaces and pedestrian walkways. These benches are a testament to Ross’s fascination with functionality and service in public areas.
Constructed from CNC Steel with a powder coating, the benches feature anamorphic, chalk-like forms that were initially conceived as hand sketches and charcoal drawings. Ross’s creative process then translated these ideas into a workable 3D format, resulting in functional art pieces that promise to redefine public seating in MDD.
Lara Bohinc’s “Utopia”: A Vision of Nature and Harmony
Designer Lara Bohinc has been bestowed with the prestigious 2023 Miami Design District Annual Design Commission. Her project, “Utopia,” is an immersive experience that spans four installations, each showcasing irregular, bulbous forms reminiscent of organic growth. These sculptures bring to mind living organisms and are strategically scattered throughout the district, fostering a sense of nature coexisting harmoniously with urban life.
Bohinc’s “Utopia” includes outdoor seating, tables, oversized light sculptures, a giant centrepiece egg-form, and an astonishing 900 egg-shaped birdhouses nestled among the trees. Crafted from cork and hand-painted in vibrant hues inspired by Miami’s architectural palette, Bohinc’s creations promise to captivate the imagination of visitors.
Craig Robins Collection: “A Train of Thoughts”
The Craig Robins Collection in Miami houses over 1,300 pieces of contemporary art and innovative design. This year’s rehanging of the collection, titled “A Train of Thoughts,” spotlights two core subgroups within the collection: figuration and conceptualism. The exhibition offers a unique glimpse into a collecting history that celebrates both abject and hyperbolic figurative imagery and self-reflexive institutional critique.
Visitors to the DACRA Headquarters in Miami’s Design District can explore this thought-provoking exhibition from December 6 to 8, gaining insight into the juxtaposition of seemingly contrasting artistic themes.
Gagosian & Jeffrey Deitch’s “Forms”: Navigating the Boundaries of Art
“Forms” is the eighth annual group exhibition jointly presented by Jeffrey Deitch and Gagosian during Miami Art Week. This exhibition, located in the city’s Design District, challenges the conventional narrative of modern art, which has often focused on the shift between figuration and abstraction. “Forms” acknowledges and questions this transition through a diverse selection of works that reference and challenge the representational world.
Art enthusiasts can explore this boundary-pushing exhibition at 35 NE 40th St., Miami, FL 33137, from December 5 to 10.
The Art of Hip Hop: Celebrating Visual Heroes
The Museum of Graffiti’s founders, Alan Ket and Allison Freidin, proudly present “Art of Hip Hop.” This immersive exhibition shines a spotlight on the often-overlooked visual heroes of Hip Hop culture, including photographers, album cover artists, graffiti visionaries, and logo designers. The exhibition offers a unique exploration of Hip Hop’s history and its significant impact on Miami’s cultural landscape.
“Art of Hip Hop” will be on display from December 5, 2023, onwards, offering a rare opportunity to view vintage ephemera from Hip Hop’s early days and iconic works by renowned photographers and artists.
The Chronicles of Miami by JR: An Epic Mural
French artist JR introduces his latest mural, “The Chronicles of Miami,” a captivating piece inspired by the Mexican muralist Diego Rivera. As part of JR’s ambitious Chronicles series, this mural envisions an entire city represented through art. To create this masterpiece, JR and his travelling studio visited ten different neighbourhoods in Miami, capturing the essence of the city’s diverse culture and history through photography and storytelling.
Visitors can immerse themselves in this epic mural at Jungle Plaza, 3801 NE 1st Ave., Miami, FL 33137, and use the augmented reality app “JR: murals” to explore the individual stories of the 1,048 people depicted in the mural.
Stardust Pavilion by Flare: A Dance of Light and Reflection
“Stardust” is a 10 ft. tall structure designed by Flare, evoking the architectural tradition of XVII Century “Follies.” This bespoke pavilion is the first in a series and promises an enchanting experience for visitors. Upon entering, “Stardust” envelops its occupants in a mesmerizing dance of light and reflection, with mirrored ceilings and glass walls creating a captivating atmosphere.
This architectural marvel, along with complementing furniture pieces designed by Flare, will be open to the public from November 2023 to January 2024, at 95 NE 40th St., Miami, FL 33137.
Swampspace Gallery X Spinello Projects: A Tribute to Pop Culture
“VALLE DE LÁGRIMAS / VALLEY OF TEARS” is a montage of ten striking canvases presented by Spinello Projects in collaboration with Swampspace Gallery in Miami’s Design District. These paintings serve as a meditation on popular culture and a tribute to Mexican fotonovelas of the 1970s. This monumental work, created by Adolfo Rene Sanchez before his passing in 1990, is part of the “GAY ERA” series of solo exhibitions and projects.
Visitors to Swampspace and Spinello Projects can immerse themselves in this curated collection, celebrating queer experiences, narratives, and artistic expressions. Don’t miss this opportunity to engage with a diverse range of artists and their thought-provoking works from December 4 to 9.
Erick & Elliot Jimenez: “Reclining Mermaid”
“Reclining Mermaid” is a site-specific billboard created by the talented Cuban-American twin photo duo, Elliot & Erick Jiménez. This striking portrait of Yemaya, the deity associated with the sea, serves as a powerful symbol of Miami’s rich cultural heritage. The shimmering dress and the eyes of the figure allude to the history of Cuba’s colonialism and the blending of Spanish and West African traditions.
This public artwork, part of the “Southern Histories” series, commemorates under-recognized historical narratives tied to Miami’s roots in the American South, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Located at the corner of NE 2nd Ave. & 40 St., Miami, FL 33137, it underscores the transformative influence of Caribbean and Latin American cultures on the city’s urban fabric.
Miami Art Week 2023 promises to be an extraordinary celebration of art, culture, and creativity. With a diverse range of exhibitions and installations, the Miami Design District and its surrounding areas will come alive with artistic expression and innovation.
Whether you’re a seasoned art enthusiast or simply curious about the world of contemporary art, this year’s Art Week offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the vibrant and dynamic world of Miami’s art scene. Don’t miss out on the chance to explore these captivating installations and exhibitions that are set to leave a lasting impression on all who attend.