Art is made by all people and made for all people. The object as a closed system is obsolete.
Every year, during Miami’s Art Week, like with the majority of tent-centered fairs I have attended, I find myself more focused on the price tags than the art attached.
The soullessness of these fairs, with their whited-walled booths, is impressive and the degree of separation between the fair’s directors, the artists, their art, and communities is palpable. Tickets cost more than a meal and any intellectual gain or substance is often impossible to find, drowned in a sea of aimless bodies and excess.
This is mostly a function of poor display, as the majority of works are chained to walls and stagnant, rendering any hope of critical discernment, interaction/intra-action, or thoughtful reflection unfulfilled.
High Tide, presented as part of Satellite Art Show, is a locally sourced exhibition featuring work by Ana Mendez, Laurencia Strauss, Matthew Evan Taylor, Deanna Young, Neil Bender, TVGOV, and explores various ways artists confront the intersection of unattainable, paradisal ideals and urban development, safe-space making, and sustainability in South Florida.
A majority of the artworks and projects have moving parts that function outside the studio, turning the gallery into a place for experimentation, staging, and disseminating information. The show features the remnants and documentation of performative gestures, sculpture digital media, photography, sound-compositions, painting, and non traditional architectural models.
THE PROBLEM & THE SOLUTION
Together these works create a narrative that reflects on some of the current socio-political and economic conditions in Miami by excavating raw emotion, shady political dealings, and hard truths while simultaneously using our frustration as a call to arms to think critically about our surroundings and take action through participatory art. These are active art-works that are not bound by walls, but by our willingness to take them with us.
Below is a short preview highlighting two of the works that frame the exhibition:
TVGOV: Nightmare Americana
The art-activist collective TVGOV are #sprawlbusters and use facts/transparency to rally people around a cause. Nightmare Americana is actively protesting the development of American Dream Miami, a mega mixed-use entertainment complex at the edge of the Everglades.
On November 21st, TVGOV led a bus tour to major points of commerce including The Port of Miami, Dolphin Mall, and the proposed site for American Dream Miami. Their maps allow visitors to recreate the tour and navigate the city as TVGOV did. If you aren’t already irate about another mall, just sit and meditate on their looped-gif showing the endless destruction of the Everglades, South Florida’s main source of fresh water.
Laurencia Strauss: New Grounds
Laurencia Strauss is an artist that works directly with land and city. Her modular-compost sculpture, New Grounds, offers an innovative way of dealing with our waste. Each bin is filled with paper, sand, worms, and foodstuff: compost. Artists and visitors are encouraged to shred their paper-ephemera to be later used as the foundation for more bins.
All the compost produced in the space will be packaged for viewers to take with them as offerings to other plants. Strauss notes that these compost bins can float, a quality she believes is crucial to making new and productive land. While New Grounds is an entire sculptural system, each bin can be looked at as an individual model for sustainable, compost-based land art.
THE FISH IN THIS SEA IS A COLLABORATIVE VIDEO PROGRAM FEATURING SOUTH FLORIDA ARTISTS. THE FISH IN THIS SEA PRESENTED AN OPPORTUNITY FOR LOCAL VIDEO ARTISTS TO HAVE THEIR WORK REVIEWED & INCLUDED IN HIGH TIDE AT THE INAUGURAL SATELLITE FAIR.
- Caitlin Burns
- Brian Whitely
- Brian Deutzman
- Jose Garza
- Micheal Finnigan
- Juan Carlos Zaldivar
HIGH TIDE was organized in October and November, while surveying art across South Florida, and reinforces the presence of contemporary art in Miami by bringing together alumni or current residents from multiple Miami-based programs like Cannonball, ArtCenter South Florida, Artist in Residence in Everglades, and Sofla-Culture blog Tropicult. The exhibition also presents an important opportunity for early and mid-career artists living in South Florida to exhibit work that is critical and reflective, not market-based, during Art Basel.more »