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About

The Library System has a long history of cultural and educational exhibitions, and makes a special call to artists on a rolling basis for temporary exhibitions that correspond to selected annual themes and/or that highlight the library’s special collections and services.

Additionally, the Vasari Project is an archive that documents the development of the visual arts in Miami‑Dade County since 1945.

For more information about the art collection, exhibition programs or the Vasari archive, call 305‑375‑5599 or e‑mail art@mdpls.org.

A Visual Narrative
Miami-Dade Public Library System's Permanent Art Collection and Exhibitions

Library Artist-in-Residence Program
Interview with Jacob Brillhart, Rocco Ceo, Victor Deupi

Pablo Cano's Library Exhibition
Pablo Cano To The Eye Behind The Keyhole — 1979‑2016

Library Exhibitions

Pedestrian 1985 & 2015
Street Photography In Downtown with Liam Crotty and David Spitzer

Art Exhibitions & Programming

Venus Wounded
By Maikel Domínguez and Eduardo Herrera Baullosa
Curated by Andrés Isaac Santana

September 7, 2018 - February 3, 2019
Main Library – Lobby Gallery

Venus Wounded is the result of a collaboration and exchange between visual artist Maikel Domínguez and poet and writer Eduardo Herrera Baullosa. This exhibition proposes an approach to the female figure and the femininity dimension, substantiated as the leading element—or entity—within the narrative context that builds up links between the visual art and the literary text. An approach formulated from a feeling of oddness arising anytime we face the ontological reality of a different being: indistinctly wonderful, different and alien. In this way, Maikel’s paintings and Eduardo’s poems, focus our attention on the sinuous and ambiguous silhouettes of female characters, whose density and compactness challenge all model subjection. Somehow, the pieces gathered for this exhibition refer to a type of feminine and masculine duality or overlap which act as a metaphor of the artist’s own condition. As it relates to Maikel, the series is a nod in complicity to what has been—and is—his family experience, marked as it is by the impression and value of two female characters: his mother and his grandmother. In Eduardo’s case, there are clear signs of the same level of commitment and belonging, only that in this case that proximity to the topic is marked by absence. In both cases, artist and poet, outline a map in which gender ambiguity and the thickness of the intermediate, determine the conceptual biases of their respective poetics.

Venus Wounded
Por Maikel Domínguez y Eduardo Herrera
Comisariado por Andrés Isaac Santana

7 de septiembre de 2018 - 3 de febrero de 2019
Main Library – Galería del Vestíbulo

La exposición Venus Wounded, que resulta de la colaboración e intercambio entre el artista visual Maikel Domínguez y el poeta y escritor Eduardo Herrera Baullosa, propone un acercamiento a la figura femenina y a la dimensión de lo femenino, sustantivado como el elemento (o entidad) protagónico dentro del contexto narrativo que se teje entre la obra plástica y el texto literario. Una aproximación que se articula desde el sentimiento de extrañeza que se manifiesta siempre cuando nos enfrentamos a la realidad ontológica de un ser distinto: maravilloso, diferente y ajeno indistintamente. De tal suerte, las pinturas de Maikel; al igual que los poemas de Eduardo, focalizan la mirada sobre los perfiles sinuosos y ambiguos de personajes femeninos cuya densidad y espesura desatiendan cualquier sujeción al canon. Las piezas reunidas en esta muestra se refieren, de alguna manera, a esa especie de dualidad o de solapamiento de lo femenino y lo masculino como metáfora de la propia condición del artista. Por parte de Maikel, la serie establece guiños cómplices en lo relativo a lo que ha sido (y es) su experiencia familiar, marcada, como lo está, por la impronta y el valor de dos figuras femeninas: su madre y su abuela. En el caso de Eduardo se advierte el mismo nivel de compromiso y de pertenencia, solo que en esta ocasión esa cercanía al tema está marcada por la ausencia. En ambos casos, artista y poeta, prefiguran un mapa en el que la ambigüedad de género y el grosor de lo intermedio, determinan las predisposiciones conceptuales de sus respectivas poéticas.

Make Beautiful!!!
…creating art across a spectrum of mediums

by Ryan Cacolici

August 23 - December 9
North Dade Regional

Mirrored print of a lion with a serpent in its mouth

This exhibition focuses on the fine art side of Ryan Cacolici’s unconventional and experimental approach to the visual realm. The Moksha Art Fair series is the product of a unique system developed by Cacolici, which consists of drawing or painting, then scanning or photographing and further manipulating the image with a computer to then print again and continue working over the top of the image in different mediums, including sometimes using just water to paint with the printed ink. This repetition of cycling from analog to digital back to analog and back to digital and compositing the layers gives the work an aesthetic that matches the themes and subjects therein: predominately apocalyptic visions where nature and technology merge on the same plane as primitive and ultramodern forms, blurring the lines of perception between the analog world and our increasingly digital environment, challenging the viewer to distinguish between the two.

“I am always asked about ‘what I do’ and find no simple explanation. People see my band and say, “Oh, you’re a musician?” No, but I do write and perform music. They see a painting and assume I’m a painter. Again, no, but I’ve been drawing and painting my entire life. After reading my book they say, “I didn’t know you were a writer…”

I am an artist. I don’t have the ability to confine my expression to just one medium. I have so many stories to tell and there are so many ways for me to tell them. We all face a horizon to this life and I’ve always thought it important to leave only beautiful artifacts in my wake. This effort to ‘Make Beautiful’; in this world is what inspired my book title, “Permanence is a Ghost We Chase.” I intend for my beauty to distract people from their own ghosts if only for a moment.”

– Ryan Cacolici

Valley of Tears
On the probability of disillusion and other disenchantments

by Oliver Sanchez

August 11 - December 29, 2018
Miami Beach Regional Library – Lobby Gallery

Someone once said coincidence is fate. This may be true as it does begin to explain how seemingly unrelated circumstances and events are interwoven in a grand quantum kabuki collision of cause and effect. We grapple to find meaning in a glut of information. Often, disillusion gives way to promise and new opportunity for accepting trust in nature and spirit. This exhibition features anecdotal chronicles, painting montages, photographs and a variety of ephemera that are physical depictions of the disenchantments that often lurk beyond our gaze.

Chaotic murder scene comprised of a painting mosaic Old desaturated image of NY subway trian covered in graffitti

The Barbers of Miami and Havana: Relations Not Cut
by Phil Eidenberg‑Noppe

August 11 - December 21, 2018
Hispanic Branch

Barbershops are places where community, culture and identity thrive. They are also places where there are connections between people on many levels. This exhibit takes you inside several Cuban American barbershops in the Miami area and several Cuban barbershops in Havana to allow you to see for yourself how much goes on besides people getting haircuts. Regardless of the ever‑shifting governmental politics and policies of the two countries, the connections between people are strong and relations are not cut!

About the Artist
Phil Eidenberg‑Noppe is a Seattle‑based photographer specializing in cultural documentary and abstract “impressionist” photography. He shoots with available light on‑site at locations ranging from urban barbershops to remote elk fields. Having been an environmental scientist for close to 30 years (a hydrologist focusing on rivers and streams), he thrives on in‑depth investigation and strives to convey the details and nuance of what is going on below the surface.

Phil believes that how people view life is grounded in their identities—the stories people tell themselves individually and collectively, which then affects how people live their lives. Identity in turn is a function of history, environment, time and place. All of this is expressed in the diversity of thought, expression and interaction of world cultures. Exploring and manifesting this belief is a primary motivation in Phil’s work.

Barberos de Miami y la Habana: Relaciones que no se cortan
Por Phil Eidenberg‑Noppe

11 de agosto - 21 de diciembre de 2018
Sucursal de bibliotecas hispana

Las barberías son lugares en los que florece la comunidad, la cultura y la identidad y son lugares también donde se establecen conexiones entre las personas a muchos niveles. Esta muestra nos lleva a varias barberías cubano‑americanas en el área de Miami y a varias barberías en la Habana para que pueda ver por sí mismo qué más sucede en ellas aparte del corte del cabello. A pesar de las constantes cambiantes políticas gubernamentales de ambos países, ¡las conexiones entre las personas son fuertes y las relaciones no se cortan!

Sobre el artista
Phil Eidenberg‑Noppe es un fotógrafo que reside en Seattle y se especializa en documentales culturales y fotografía abstracta “impresionista”. Eidenberg‑Noppe toma sus fotos con la luz disponible en los lugares, desde barberías urbanas hasta campos de alces. Luego de trabajar como cientíífico ambientalista cerca de 30 años (hidrólogo con especial interés en ríos y arroyos), lleva a cabo investigaciones profundas y se esfuerza por transmitir los detalles y matices de lo que sucede debajo dela superficie.

Phil considera que la percepción de la vida que tienen las personas se basa en su identidad, en las historias que las personas cuentan individual y colectivamente, que luego influyen en cómo las personas viven. A su vez, la entidad es un relato de historia, medioambiente, momento y lugar. Todo esto se expresa en la diversidad de pensamientos, expresiones e interacción de las culturas del mundo. Explorar y manifestar esto es la principal motivación de la obra de Phil.

Green Alien Invasion
By Edwin Villasmil

June 15 - December 27
West Dade Regional

This artistic educational environmental program is dedicated to the family where art is used as an educational tool. Eco‑Art or Ecological Art is a contemporary form of environmental art that is used as a tool to sensitize people to environmental concerns. Eco‑Art exhibitions and workshops are a path to communicate, stimulate dialogue, educate and contribute to social transformation. Eco‑Art informs and interprets nature and its processes and educates us about problems and solutions. For this exhibition we use extraterrestrials, a common theme in science fiction stories, comic books, video games and films that take place on other planets in the future, and that make use of scientific devices and other things that are real or imagined. Most of the time aliens invade Earth either to exterminate and supplant human life, steal the planet’s resources or destroy the planet altogether. But there are also friendly aliens coming in peace and green aliens saving the earth and the galaxy from pollution.

Artist Bio
Edwin Villasmil is a Venezuelan‑American artist, educator and activist. He began his artistic career in theater and drawing. After undertaking a trip for observation and study through Europe and North Africa, he developed a series of environmental projects. Villasmil has investigated the relationship among art, society, and nature. He has been honored with important awards, honors, and grants. His artworks are in museums, foundations, private and public collections, and he has had several publications and renowned critics review his works. Since 2004, he has been living in Miami, where he has been developing environmental‑art exhibitions and workshops.

Invasión de Extraterrestres Verde
Por Edwin Villasmil

15 de junio - 27 de diciembre
Biblioteca West Dade Regional

Este es un programa artístico, educativo, ambiental (Eco‑Arte) dedicado a la familia y donde el arte es utilizado como herramienta. Eco‑Arte o Arte Ecológico es una contemporánea forma de arte ambientalista el cual es utilizado como herramienta para sensibilizar a las personas acerca de situaciones ambientales. La exhibición y talleres de Eco‑Arte son una vía para comunicar, estimular el diálogo, educar y contribuir con la transformación social. Eco‑Arte informa e interpreta la naturaleza y sus procesos, y nos educa acerca de sus problemas y soluciones. Los extraterrestres son un tema común en cuentos de ciencia ficción, suplementos, video juegos y películas los cuales tienen lugar en otros planetas y en el futuro, y que utilizan dispositivos científicos y otras cosas reales o imaginarias. La mayoría de las veces los extraterrestres invaden la Tierra bien sea para exterminar y suplantar la vida humana, robar los recursos del planeta o destruirlo totalmente. Pero también existen amigables extraterrestres que vienen en paz y extraterrestres ambientalistas que llegan para salvar la Tierra y la galaxia de la contaminación humana.

Artist Bio
Edwin Villasmil es un artista, educador y activista venezolano‑americano, comenzó su carrera artística dibujando y en el teatro. Luego de un viaje de observación y estudio por Europa y el norte de África, desarrolla una serie de proyectos ambientalistas. Villasmil ha investigado sobre la relación entre arte, sociedad y naturaleza. Ha sido honrado con importantes honores, premios, becas y bolsas de trabajo, sus obras de arte están en museos, fundaciones y en colecciones públicas y privadas, figura en varias publicaciones y renombrados críticos han reseñado su obra. Desde 2004 ha estado viviendo en Miami donde ha estado desarrollando exhibiciones y talleres de arte ambientalistas.

Illustration of Biomechanical Creature
Illustration of Biomechanical Creature
Illustration of Biomechanical Creature
Illustration of Biomechanical Creature

Shared Visions
By 7 Plus One Art Project

June 9 - October 9, 2018
Main Library – 2nd Floor Gallery

Shared Visions brings together the recent work of 14 local and international abstract artists. Though each has different artistic motivations, consistent elements exist that tie the works together as a succinct collection. The 7 Plus One Art Project unites individuals of various cultures, ethnicities, experiences, generations, genders and religions. Some of the artists have been formally trained in art history and visual arts, while others come from different professional fields, such as architecture, medicine and education. The project has been such a success that it has continued to add artists to its repertoire with each exhibition.

The artwork included in the exhibit is multidisciplinary in nature, and encourages the viewer to note similarities between abstract artists and identify the many paths that may develop from a similar starting language – from one shared vison.

Mixed Media Artwork, Happy is Always Good
MaiYap Happy is Always Good, Mixed Media on Paper
Shared Visions, 7 Plus One Art Project

South Beach Century: How South Beach and the Arts Built Modern Miami

April 5, 2017 - September 30, 2018
First Wednesday of every month, 6 ‑ 7:30 p.m.

North Shore Branch

In 2015, Tom Austin, author of The Surf Club, published by Assouline, and long‑time chronicler of Miami for such publications as the New York Times, Miami Herald and Columbia Journalism Review, was given a South Florida Knight Arts Challenge grant for South Beach Century: How South Beach and the Arts Built Modern Miami (www.knightarts.org). South Beach Century celebrates the creative spirit of South Beach and Miami itself, incorporating design, music, dance, fashion, film, television, literature, culinary history, nightlife and visual art.

On the first Wednesday of every month from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Mr. Austin will be in residence at the North Shore Branch Library conducting oral history recording sessions with anyone who wishes to be interviewed about South Beach cultural life. Participants are encouraged to bring copies of photographs, ephemera and memorabilia of South Beach from nightclub flyers and restaurant menus to art gallery invitations.

Some of the South Beach archival material, as well as transcripts of the oral histories, will be featured in the South Beach Century: How South Beach and the Arts Built Modern Miami book. In 2018, the South Beach Century book will be launched at the North Shore Branch Library along with a pop‑up exhibition of photographs contributed by participants. Work by South Beach artists such as Fernando Garcia, Tomata du Plenty and Andy Sweet, drawn from the Miami‑Dade Public Library System’s Art Services and Exhibitions Department, will also be part of the pop‑up exhibition. Cultural outreach events including screenings of South Beach‑related films will be conducted at City of Miami Beach public parks.

South Beach Century will use oral histories—taken from artists, designers, musicians and residents from all walks of life—to create a multi‑layered examination of South Beach’s unique cultural contributions. This will be crowd‑sourced history, a chronicle of a singular city told through its singular people.

To participate in the South Beach Century Oral History Project, contact Tom Austin at austint@att.net.

Knight Foundation logo

Portrait of late artist Carlos Alfonzo in his South Beach studio
The late artist Carlos Alfonzo in his South Beach studio, circa 1990.
Photo by Steven Paul Hlavac / www.photoasylum.com
Portrait of Edie Beale, star of Grey Gardens, at News Cafe on Ocean Drive
Edie Beale, star of Grey Gardens, at News Cafe on Ocean Drive.
Photo by Steven Paul Hlavac / www.photoasylum.com

Upcoming Exhibitions & Programs

Forget What is Not Worth Remembering
Artist Books Exhibition by Margarita Cano
Curated by Amy Galpin, Chief Curator, Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum

October 1, 2018 - February 15, 2019
Main Library – 2nd Floor

Opening Reception

Saturday, October 6, 3:00 ‑ 5:00 p.m.

Join us as we celebrate a fantastic exhibition of books created by librarian, artist and community culture activist Margarita Cano. On display, you’ll see a collection of artist books or the creative rendition of an artist’s vision of what a book could be when stretched by the imagination. Somewhere between a sketch book, a journal and an artistic creation, artist books give you a peek into the style and philosophy of an artist. From traditional bound books to cigar boxes, tennis balls, and everything in between, this exhibition of both Cano’s artist books and the MDPLS/Vasari collection of artist books will turn the metaphorical pages of what art can be into a fairy tale with a happy ending!

Young girl releaseing dove from a balcony overlooking el Malecon
Margarita Cano, Libertad en el Malecon, 2005, Mixed Media on Paper
From the Permanent Art Collection of the Miami‑Dade Public Library System

Christo and Jeanne‑Claude in Miami
The Library and the Surrounded Islands Project

Made possible by the MDPLS Permanent Art Collection and The Vasari Project

October 13, 2018 - February 28, 2019
Main Library – The Vasari Project Area

This retrospective exhibition combines works from the Miami‑Dade Public Library System’s Permanent Art Collection and The Vasari Project to delineate the Library’s involvement with the monumental art installation Surrounded Islands, created by Christo and Jeanne‑Claude in 1983. The selection of objects and prints combined with other visual ephemera tells the chronological history of the project from conception through the subsequent legal battles leading up to the project’s set up, and, finally, the legacy of Surrounded Islands. The complexity and scope of the ambitious pink floating art installation left profound marks on the community. Surrounded Islands gave Miami the international visibility and credibility that it deserved for a long time coming. Christo and Jeanne‑Claude transformed our beloved Biscayne Bay into a work of art, our beautiful islands shining pink in all their glory, transforming Miami forever.

Process and Participation, Surrounded Islands Project
Social Sculpture and Panel Discussion moderated by Veronica Fazzio

Saturday, October 13, 3‑5 p.m.
Main Library

Enjoy an experimental panel discussion with artists Kerry Ware, David Bricker and Veronica Fazzio. Learn how Miami participated in the Christo and Jeanne‑Claude Surrounded Islands project and how the city was temporarily and forever transformed.

We are pleased to participate in PAMM’s free Educator Workshops.

About the Artists

Kerry Ware was born in Southern California and received his BFA in sculpture from California State University, Fullerton. After applying to graduate school at the University of Miami, he received a full scholarship and teaching assistantship and finished his studies there under Darby Bannard in painting. Ware shows his work in Miami and continues to teach studio and art history classes.
www.kerryware.com

Dave Bricker is an MFA designer, speaker, and author who teaches the art of business transformation through storytelling. The people he met while working on the Surrounded Islands project inspired him to sail thousands of miles in search of the stories that form the backbone of his work today. More at www.storysailing.com

Veronica Fazio graduated in fine arts, photography and audiovisual techniques in Argentina. Fazio received her MFA in visual arts at Miami International University of Art & Design. She is an interdisciplinary artist and social sculpture practitioner. Currently, she is in an artist‑in‑residence practice based research program in the Art Services and Exhibitions Division of the Miami‑Dade Public Library System. Fazio is also pursuing her PhD of Philosophy in creative practice at Plymouth University, UK.
www.veronicafazzio.com.

Exhibition Highlights