Miami Artist Bert Rodriguez Is Back from the Dead

Inspired by his own mortality, a local legend roars back at the Bass Museum of Art.

For the second video, Rodriguez compressed eight months of porn he had downloaded on his computer into a 60-second money shot. Sweaty, heaving bodies combine to create this blurry, abstract imagery not unlike a sublime Rothko painting.

Perhaps the most iconic piece on display is Rodriguez's Weeping Monolith, which he debuted at the Miami Beach Convention Center during Art Basel last year.

Inspired by Kubrik's 2001: A Space Odyssey, the black sculpture, fashioned from foam, resin, and Fiberglas, spills a tear every 30 seconds.


"In Your Own Image: The Best of Bert Rodriguez": Through June 14. Bass Museum of Art, 2121 Park Ave., Miami Beach; 305-673-7530; Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

"It has all this interior plumbing and works with gravity," Rodriguez says. "It's surrounded by all these Renaissance paintings from the museum's permanent collection with religious figures in them, so it almost takes on the element of one of those crying Virgins that appear to people occasionally."

Rodriguez never stopped working for this show even though he found himself lamer than Lazarus while recovering from the crash, and on opening night, he showed his Bass audience that his resurrection was complete.

In a howl-worthy performance piece titled What a Tree Feels Like, he buried himself like an Indian fakir at the entrance of the museum, leaving only his head exposed above ground as he greeted visitors.

"People were pretty shocked. They didn't expect me to be alive."

As the Bass exhibit shows, he's more alive than ever.

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