By John Thomason
By Benjy Caplan
By Artburst Miami
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Daniel Reskin
This fall and winter, the recession and immense cuts to arts funding threaten to short-circuit Miami's recent extraordinary progress in art, theater, and music. But the city is not surrendering.
This year's Miami New Times expanded fall arts guide proves not only the theater, arts, dance, and literary scenes but also the booming culinary community have cooked up a new stew. Culture vultures will find plenty to slaver over. This season is stocked with Broadway smashes — including Wicked, Mamma Mia!, and Miss Saigon — scintillating museum and gallery exhibits, world music offerings simmering with flamenco, jazz, blues and marquee pop names, and a heavy dash of classical and experimental dance.
Miami Book Fair International will return in November, hosting more than 300 authors and plenty of lectures to keep bibliophiles abuzz. A smorgasbord of the visual arts and edgy performances will be served at dozens of galleries in the Wynwood Art District, open from 7 to 10 p.m. the second Saturday of every month.
In December, Art Basel will provide a centerpiece as the international art-world elite rubs its hands collectively over a feast of hundreds of galleries and thousands of artists' work whipped together masterfully for what's become America's most hotly anticipated art event.
It's this fusion of multiculti ingredients that truly makes our home a flavorful melting pot. The arts guide includes short profiles of local chefs such as Norman Van Aken, Michael Schwartz, and Michelle Bernstein, who offer their distinct takes on Miami's restaurant scene. There's also a mention of the Adrienne Arsht Center's Celebrity Chefs Series, which begins this month; it will bring names such as Ingrid Hoffmann, Daisy Martinez, Anthony Bourdain, Jacques Pépin, Eric Ripert, and Emeril Lagasse to the stage.
Ah, and don't forget the South Beach Wine & Food Festival in February, when the Big Orange becomes the epicenter of epicurean delight, drawing the most innovative chefs, winemakers, sommeliers, and cocktail artists working in the field today.
The table is set; the diet of food, art, music, theater, and dance is steady. Peruse these pages and discover a year-round menu of food and culture.
Since winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, Tenzin Gyatso, better known as the 14th Dalai Lama, has arguably become the most famous spiritual leader in popular culture. He has been featured in numerous films, such as Seven Years in Tibet and Kundun, and has become a favorite subject for many artists. The Frost Art Museum reminds us of the principles he embodies, during "The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama," an exhibit including works from more than 80 artists across the planet. Each one offers a personal interpretation of the holy man upon the altar of creativity. Organized by the Committee of 100 for Tibet and the Dalai Lama Foundation, the sprawling, multimedia show seeks to engage viewers in exploring art as a catalyst for peace.
At the Miami Art Museum (MAM), catch the most comprehensive survey of Guillermo Kuitca's work assembled under two roofs in North America. Spanning nearly 30 years of the Argentine superstar's oeuvre, "Guillermo Kuitca: Everything, Paintings, and Works on Paper, 1980-2008" and "Guillermo Kuitca: Everything (Else)" will be displayed at MAM and the Freedom Tower, respectively. Kuitca explores the intersection of public and private spaces through works ranging from early paintings of theatrical scenes to complex abstractions that reference maps and architectural plans.
Speed demons will likely get revved up over the Wolfsonian's ode to the motorcar, opening October 16. "Styled for the Road: The Art of Automobile Design, 1908 to 1948" examines jalopies in America from the early 1900s through the 1940s and how they helped shape American culture. The Wolf's jamboree will also convey a sense of the social, political, and economic context of this volatile period from the roaring '20s and the Great Depression through World War II.
The same evening, Ingrid Hoffmann and Daisy Martinez will arrive at the Arsht Center to add their savory Latin spice to the local culinary scene as part of the wildly popular Celebrity Chef Series. The Colombian-born Hoffmann stars on the Food Network series Simply Delicioso (also the title of her best-selling cookbook). Martinez, a New Yorker of Puerto Rican heritage, wrote the multi-award-winning Daisy Cooks! Latin Flavors That Will Rock Your World and is the star of the Food Network's Viva Daisy! The pair will tantalize the taste buds with their piquant approach to Latin-inspired dishes and secrets to success. If you are craving to learn how to prepare a delectable arroz con pollo or sancocho con aji, now is the time.
On October 18, the Rhythm Foundation will bring together genre-bending musicians Béla Fleck, Zakir, and Edgar Meyer for a sizzling collaboration at the Gusman Center. Hailed as the leading virtuosos on their respective instruments — banjo, tabla, and double bass — the three move with ease among the worlds of rock, jazz, classical, bluegrass, and world music, promising to conjure a magical evening.
On October 27 at the Arsht Center, Oprah Winfrey will present The Color Purple, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker and the Oscar-nominated film by Steven Spielberg. The soul-stirring musical tells the inspiring story of a woman named Celie who triumphs against all odds to discover her inner beauty. Nominated for 11 Tony Awards, the production boasts an ebullient score featuring jazz, gospel, and blues.