Work!: An exhibit featuring paintings, sculptures, installations, videos, and photography, "Work!" was created by the Popopstudios co-op. The show's title stems from a colloquialism describing the futility of a pointless action. The highlight is Blue Curry's Like Taking Sand to the Beach, a ton of sand carved out of Yamacraw Beach in the Bahamas and meticulously re-created in the gallery space, giving visitors an opportunity to visit the island nation without having to cough up the cash for airfare. Curry's inventiveness and playful approach to materials also bore into the skull in Scleratinia Faviidae Futura Tecnoformis, a nifty installation in which he recalibrates a chunk of brain coral with electronic gadgetry as a comment on the collision between technology and nature. — Carlos Suarez De Jesus Through September 22. Diaspora Vibe Gallery, 3938 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 305-573-4046, www.diasporavibe.com.
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2007 Cintas Fellowship Finalists: The show features the work of Alexandre Arrechea, María Martínez-Cañas, Gean Moreno, Wilfredo Prieto, and Leyden Rodriguez-Casanova, the five finalists for the $15,000 Cintas visual arts fellowship for 2007. Martínez-Cañas is the standout amid a lot of inconsistent work and shoddy presentation. The artist, who snagged a Cintas fellowship in 1988, is represented by a 14 black-and-white photo-based series, Adaptation, in which she reworked photographs from the personal collection of the late José Gómez-Sicre, a Cuban critic and curator at the Museum of Modern Art of Latin America in Washington, D.C. In them she erases the artworks of a 1940s de Stijl exhibit at a museum in the Netherlands that prominently featured the works of Piet Mondrian, reworking them to depict people standing in the now-empty museum. — Carlos Suarez De Jesus Through September 16. Frost Art Museum, Florida International University, SW 107th Avenue and Eighth Street, Miami; 305-348-2890, www.frostartmuseum.org.
Tamayo: A Modern Icon Reinterpreted: This probing autopsy of Rufino Tamayo's work and life marks his first major U.S. exhibition in nearly 30 years and features close to 100 paintings culled from private and institutional collections from across the globe. The show offers an incisive look at what made the controversial Mexican master tick. Exploring 70 years of Tamayo's prolific career, the traveling exhibition is less a retrospective than a re-examination of the artist's oeuvre and enduring impact. It begins with a small group of works from the Twenties in which Tamayo first dabbled with early French Modernism. The exhibit jumps to an expansive survey of his iconic mature works from the Forties and Fifties, during which he developed his unique style of figurative abstraction. Observing signature works from his mature period, created in New York during the Forties, one is struck by Tamayo's arresting ability to dynamically portray the gamut of human emotion with profoundly universal appeal. — Carlos Suarez De Jesus Through September 23. Miami Art Museum, 101 W. Flagler St., Miami; 305-375-3000, www.miamiartmuseum.org.