Miami’s Year in Art

Judging from 2007, Miami is growing up as an art destination.

Cathartic: Debra Holt's squirrelly tribute to the events of 9/11, during a yearlong exhibit at her space, Abba Fine Art, raised the bar on self-serving bad taste. The artist lobbed a grenade at the national tragedy in a jumbled kitschfest where photos of victims and fallen firefighters mixed with faded newspaper headlines, withered flowers, candles, seashells, sand dollars, animal figurines, porcelain roses, and silver crucifix candelabra in maudlin, cheesy displays.

Wynwood Sculpture Garden: Inaugurated during Art Basel amid much rhapsodizing by local developers and pomp and circumstance courtesy of Miami Mayor Manny Diaz, Hans Van de Bovenkamp's five monumental brushed stainless-steel sculptures reflect the galloping hype polluting the city's cultural growing pangs. The crimped-off "sculpture garden" — sandwiched between two warehouses, at 2229 NW Second Ave., where a garbage dump was replaced practically overnight with quickly laid sod and kitty litter walkways — makes Gary Nader's parking lot a few blocks away look like the Champs Elysées.

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