Best visual arts exhibits at Miami galleries, collections and Museums

Yoshiko Yap


Season of the Arts in Miami

Miami’s arts groups announce their season line-ups. Here’s a look at what is coming in visual arts, dance, theater and music.

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Leandro Erlich’s 1999 installation “Swimming Pool” is part of the solo exhibition “Liminal” opening Nov. 29 at Pérez Art Museum Miami.

Few Miami installations have spurred more selfies and Instagram posts than the 2019 life-sized traffic jam on the sands of Miami Beach by Argentinian artist Leandro Erlich. The encore is Erlich’s first North American survey show, “Liminal,” opening in November at Perez Art Museum Miami. Each of the 16 works is drawn from a familiar setting — an elevator, subway, classroom, hair salon, sidewalk — presented in ways that challenge perception. Here, fantasy and reality collide and meld. “In the hands of Leandro Erlich, art and magic are often one in the same,” writes PAMM Director Franklin Sirmans.

“Leandro Erlich: Liminal,” Nov. 29–Sept. 4, 2023, at Pérez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami;; 305-375-3000.


The annual showcase at collector Martin Margulies’ massive Margulies Collection at the Warehouse in Wynwood presents carefully curated works by some of the world’s most seminal contemporary artists. This year’s exhibit includes “The Bitter Years,” nearly 100 black-and-white images documenting the Great Depression through a project sponsored by the Farm Security Administration under the New Deal. The photographs by Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange and others have become some of the most recognizable photographs of the past century. In this time of yawning disparity between wealth and subsistence, these poignant scenes offer an object lesson of a past that could become future.

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Dorothea Lange image from her “Migrant Mother” series, shot in 1936. It is part of the show “The Bitter Years Photography Dorothea Lange and Walker Evans,” Oct. 19 – April 29, 2023, at the Margulies Collection at the Warehouse. Nabil Moo

“The Bitter Years Photography Dorothea Lange and Walker Evans,” Oct. 19 – April 29, 2023; Margulies Collection at the Warehouse, 591 NW 27th St., Miami.; 305-576-1051.

Since the camera was first invented, fashion and photography have been soulmates. Those who share the passion won’t want to miss “A Personal View on High Fashion & Street Style: Photographs from the Nicola Erni Collection, 1930s to Now,” at the Norton Museum of Art in Palm Beach. This is a chance to have a personal rendezvous with Irving Penn’s beloved 1950 black-and-white of Jean Patchett in a wide-brimmed hat that graced the cover of Vogue, Arthur Elgort’s 1988 ‘garden party’ in the Christian Lecroix atelier and Esther Haase’s 1999 photo of a model walking a lion in South Beach.

Irving Penn shot this black-and-white image of Jean Patchett for a Vogue cover in 1950. It is part of a show featuring images from the Nicola Erni Collection at the Norton Museum in Palm Beach opening Oct. 15, 2022. Reto Pedrini Photography

“A Personal View on High Fashion & Street Style: Photographs from the Nicola Erni Collection, 1930s to Now,” Oct. 15 – Jan. 15, 2023, at the Norton Museum of Art, 1450 S. Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach.; 561-832-5196.


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Wifredo Lam portrait is part of the exhibition “You Know Who You Are” at El Espacio 23, opening in November 2022.

El Espacio 23 takes its name from its location at the intersection of NE 23rd Street and NE 23rd Avenue in north Allapattah. Intentionally or not, its recent exhibitions have also centered on location. Last year’s stunning showcase of more than 100 works by African and African Diaspora artists from the private collection of developer / collector / philanthropist Jorge M. Pérez is followed by an exploration of Cuban history and culture from the perspective of 80 Cuban and Cuban-diaspora artists. “You Know Who You Are” comprises works acquired since 2017 by contemporary masters including Wifredo Lam, Amelia Pélaez, Loló Soldevilla and Zilia Sánchez with younger practitioners, including Raúl Cordero, Reynier Leyva Novo, Belkis Ayón, Flavio Garciandía, Elizabeth Cerviño and Juana Valdés.

“You Know Who You Are,” Nov. 28 through April, 2023, El Espacio 23, 2270 NW 23rd St., Miami.; 786-460-4790.

Landscapes are often thought of as mere depictions of a visual reality. But often they are imbued with symbolism, tension and polemics surrounding events of the time they were created. That’s the case with the 50 works chosen for the latest exhibition Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum at Florida International University. “In the Mind’s Eye: Landscapes of Cuba” explores race, colonialism and nationalism through the vision and brushes of three centuries of Cuban and U.S. artists inspired by the island. The show includes historic perspectives by William Glackens, Childe Hassam, Winslow Homer, Willard Metcalf and Frederic Remington, and contemporary views by Juan Carlos Alom, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Tomás Sanchez, Carrie Mae Weems, Yoan Capote and Enrique Martinez Celaya, among others. The result is sure to be a complex as our neighborly relationship.

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Winslow Homer’s “Governor’s Wife,” from 1885, is part of the show “In the Mind’s Eye: Landscapes of Cuba” at the Frost Museum of Art FIU. Erik Gould

“In the Mind’s Eye: Landscapes of Cuba,” Sept. 24 – Jan. 15, 2023, at the Frost Art Museum at FIU, 10975 SW 17 Street, Miami.; 305-348-2890.

Cuban music is so signature to Miami sound that it’s hard to imagine a time when that wasn’t so. “Turn the Beach Around,” opening Oct. 28 at the Wolfsonian-FIU, revisits interchanges between the musicians of Cuba and the U.S. from the 1930s to 1960s, when it was all quite innovative and avant garde. Also at the Wolf: the role of maps and globes in defining the here and now.

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“Holiday in Havana” lobby card, 1949, published by Columbia Pictures. From the show “Turn the Beat Around” at the Wolfsonian-FIU, Oct. 28 – April 16, 2023.

“Turn the Beat Around” and “Plotting Power: Maps and the Modern Age,” Oct. 28 – April 16, 2023, at the Wolfsonian-FIU, 1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach.; 305-531-1001.


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“Sir Richard Owen, 1804-1892,” 2013 painting by Kehinde Wiley, from the show “Lux et Veritas” at the NSU Museum of Art.

Connecticut’s Yale University is one of the nation’s top academic studios for young artists, but here in South Florida it often seems a million miles away. NSU Museum of Art is spotlighting the institution’s influence in the show “Lux et Veritas,” which focuses on a generation of artists of color who attended Yale’s graduate art program during the first decade of this century. Featured are works by now-familiar Kehinde Wiley, Wangechi Mutu, Luis Gispert and William Cordova. Also on this year’s calendar: the first solo museum show of South Florida artist Kathia St. Hilaire and screenings of a performance piece by South Africa’s William Kentridge.

“Lux et Veritas,” through Jan. 8, 2023. “Kathia St. Hilaire Cross Country,” Oct. 30 – April 23, 2023. “William Kentridge: Ursonate”, Oct. 30 – April 16. NSU Museum of Art, 1 E Las Olas Blvd, Fort Lauderdale.; 954-525-5500.


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Didier William’s 2020 painting “Gwo Madame” will be shown at Museum of Contemporary Art – North Miami in the show “Didier William: Nou Kite Tout Sa Dèyè.”

The Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami specializes in bringing diverse visual voices to public view. Its acclaimed “My Name is Maryan” — extended until Oct 2 — showcased an overlooked but seminal Polish-born artist, Pinkas Bursztyn, highly influenced by the Holocaust. This year, it presents the work of three artists who may not yet be household names — but should be. Two are locally based: Chire “VantaBlack” Regans, creator of the 2020 “Say Their Names” public art project, and Didier William, whose large-scale works are painstakingly painted with intricate patterns. The third, Leah Gordon, lives in the U.K. and often focuses on Caribbean plantation history and the slave trade.

Didier William’s “Didier William: Nou Kite Tout Sa Dèyè” and Leah Gordon’s “Kanaval,” Nov. 2 to April 16, 2023. Chire “VantaBlack” Regans’ “To What Lengths,” Oct. 14 to Jan. 20, 2023, at MOCA-North Miami, 770 NE 125th St., North Miami.; 305-893-6211.


Michel Majerus
Michel Majerus, “yet sometimes what is read successfully, stops us with its meaning no. I,” 1998, will be part of the show “Progressive Aesthetics” at ICA-Miami opening March 29, 2022.

This Institute of Contemporary Art – Miami is renowned for reintroducing highly regarded contemporary artists whose work has fallen out of fashion. This season, museum artistic director Alex Gartenfeld is reexaming the influence of the late Luxembourg artist Michel Majerus in the artist’s first U.S. museum survey. “Progressive Aesthetics” features more than 20 works from the early 1990s, many rarely before shown. If his visual language and style incorporating painting and video seem familiar, it’s because his work has influenced so many artists that followed his untimely 2002 death. Also on display are new large-scale paintings by Nina Chanel Abney in “Big Butch Energy” and an examination of early work by the late Hervé Télémaque.

“Progressive Aesthetics,” “Big Butch Energy” and “Hervé Télémaque, 1959-1964,” Nov. 29 – March 12, 2023. ICA-Miami, 61 NE 41st Street, Miami Design District.; 305-901-5272.


Art may seem like the creator’s independent expression. In fact, work often is influenced by a complex web of players, including creators, collectors, gallerists, critics, auction houses and museums.

In Miami, the creator-collector connection can be seen at its purest at extraordinary private museums that reflect the singular vision of the collectors that funded them. All are open to the public for just a few dollars.

Other spectacular local collections usually remain behind closed doors. But this spring, the public will be able to see blue-chip works from a private museum that was going to be, but now isn’t. Last year, prominent mutual-fund manager Bruce Berkowitz said he had scrapped plans to build a museum in Edgewater centered on two mammoth sculptures, James Turrell’s “Aten Reign” and Richard Serra’s “Passage of Time.” Those works remain out of view. But a selection of other holdings from the Berkowitz Contemporary Foundation will go on display in December at the University of Miami’s Lowe Art Museum.

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Do Ho Suh, Specimen Series: “Toilet, Apartment A, 348 West 22nd Street, New York,” will be shown in “A Fine Line: Highlights from the Berkowitz Contemporary Foundation” at the Lowe Art Museum.

“A Fine Line: Highlights from the Berkowitz Contemporary Foundation” runs Nov. 3 – Feb. 26, 2023, at the Lowe Art Museum, University of Miami, 1301 Stanford Drive, Coral Gables.; 305-284-3535.

At other private collections:

In the Miami Design District, the De la Cruz Collection showcases contemporary works, often by Latin American artists, selected by long-standing Miami collectors Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz. This year’s show, “Together, at the Same Time,” juxtaposes paintings, sculptures, and site-specific installations. They include new acquisitions by Christina Quarles, Shara Hughes, Vaughn Spann and Xaviera Simmons.

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Christina Quarles’ 2016 acrylic painting “I thot we understood where we stood” is one of the newly acquired works on display at the de la Cruz Collection in 2022.

De la Cruz Collection: 23 NE 41st Street, Miami.; 305-576-6112.

Mera and Don Rubell and son Jason are voracious collectors, always at the forefront of contemporary art. They haven’t yet revealed new acquisitions in this year’s showcase at their Allapattah museum, but they’re sure to wow.

Nov. 28 – May 28, 2023: New acquisitions and collection highlights, Rubell Museum, 1100 NW 23 St., Miami.; 305-573-6090.


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Vaughn Spann’s “Soul of the Revolutionary,” 2021, from the show “Phraseology” at The Bass, through April 16, 2023. Zaire Aranguren Photo by Zaire Aranguren; ZaireA

Communication is often a struggle (ask any couple). But these days, when controversy surrounds even the most basic and provable facts, meaning is often obscured in the words. “Phraseology” at The Bass in Miami Beach, explores meaning conveyed through the language of art. The works included feature letters, text and familiar advertising to protest, question conventional interpretations and explore memory. Artists include Vaughn Spann, Faith Ringgold, Jamilah Sabur, John Baldessari and Rafael Domenech.

“Phraseology,” through April 16, 2023, at The Bass, 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach.; 305-673-7530.


Haiti-born, Miami-based Edouard Duval Carrie is one of the city’s most beloved artists. Visitors to the Coral Gables Museum this fall will have the opportunity to explore the mixed-media engravings that serve as poetic odes to Caribbean literature and culture, rife with mysticism. But within the beauty lies the dark side to Haiti’s history, as Duval Carrie knows all too well.

“The World as I know It: Recent Works by Edouard Duval Carrie,” Oct. 27 – Jan. 29, 2023, at the Coral Gables Museum, 285 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables.; 305-603-8067.

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Jane Wooldridge, an award-winning journalist and Miami Herald veteran, works with coverage of real estate, economy, urban development, tourism, cruises, visual arts and Art Basel. She is a past president of the Society of American Travel Writers. Find her on Instagram and Twitter @JaneWooldridge.

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