7 Exceptional Miami Art Exhibits and Museum Shows in Miami This Fall | Miami New Times

Visual Art

7 Can't-Miss Art Exhibits Coming to Miami Museums and Galleries This Fall

Miami's art museums and galleries are gearing up for another season, featuring artists like Gary Simmons, Hernan Bas, and Charles Gaines.
Patrick Martinez's Struggle and Progress (Frederick Douglass) will be on display at the Rubell Museum starting during Miami Art Week.
Patrick Martinez's Struggle and Progress (Frederick Douglass) will be on display at the Rubell Museum starting during Miami Art Week. Rubell Museum photo
Share this:
This fall, Miami's art scene is prepping another show-stopping season full of boundary-pushing art. Pérez Art Museum Miami and Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami will feature major retrospectives for celebrated Black artists, while Fort Lauderdale's NSU Art Museum explores the legends of mid-century painting. The Rubells are back with another flock of buzzy contemporary artists, while Faena Art is stirring up controversy by flirting with artificial intelligence. Below, find the most anticipated art experiences for the upcoming season.
click to enlarge
Installation view of "Juan Francisco Elso: Pór America" at the Phoenix Art Museum
Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami photo

"Juan Francisco Elso: Por América" at the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami

Raw and gritty, featuring skeletal motifs and weathered objects, Cuban artist Juan Francisco Elso's art reflects the times and viewpoints of his generation, the first to come of age on the island after the Castro revolution. His death by leukemia at just 32 years old cut short a promising career, but that hasn't stopped MOCA from honoring him with a retrospective. Having previously debuted at El Museo del Barrio in New York City, "Juan Francisco Elso: Por América" features more than 70 works from Elso and artists such as Belkis Ayón and Glenn Ligon that help to contextualize the Cuban's brief yet impactful career. On view Wednesday, November 1, through March 17, 2024, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami, 770 NE 125th St., North Miami; 305-893-6211; mocanomi.org. Tickets cost $5 to $10; free for members, children under 12, North Miami residents.
click to enlarge
Charles Gaines, Numbers and Trees: Charleston Series 1, Tree #3, Boone Hall Drive
©Charles Gaines. Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth/Photo by Fredrik Nilsen

"Charles Gaines: 1992-2023" at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami

ICA Miami's interest in conceptual art has frequently led to challenging, insightful shows, from its exhibitions of veterans like Allan McCollum to its support for emerging artists like Avery Singer. ICA continues that tradition with a retrospective on Charles Gaines, one of the first African-Americans to work in conceptual art. Famed for pieces that integrate political and literary themes with musical notation, linguistic and numerical structures, and other systems, Gaines will restage two massive installations for the show: "Greenhouse," which looks into climate change, and "Falling Rock," which features a literal chunk of granite nearly falling onto a sheet of glass, over and over again. On view Thursday, November 16, and March 17, 2024, at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, 61 NE 41st St., Miami; 305-901-5272; icamiami.org. Admission is free.
click to enlarge
Rendering of "Maze: Journey Through the Algorithmic Self"
Faena Art and Sebastian Errazuriz Studio photo

Miami Art Week Installations at Faena Art

It should come as no surprise that the art community that embraced NFTs (most of which are worthless now) is hopping onto the artificial intelligence trend. As debates rage on about the use of generative AI in art and creative practices, Faena Art has tossed a new grenade into the fire by commissioning a work from an artist using one of these controversial new products. Chilean artist Sebastian Errazuriz used Midjourney and Dalle2, platforms that generate images using commands issued by the user, to create "Maze: Journey Through the Algorithmic Self," a "sand-covered labyrinth" that will be on display starting Tuesday, December 5. For those who can't stomach the idea of machine-made art, Faena will be putting on a more human-oriented display from local artist Kelly Breez. Her Faena Art Project Room display, "Dirt's Dive," opening Friday, November 17, transports viewers into an immersive space inspired by the Floridiana of the recent past. For all those nostalgic for the charming scuzz of South Florida's vanished dive bars, it should be a welcome refuge from the rest of Basel. Faena Art Project Room, 3420 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; faenaart.org. Admission is free.
click to enlarge
Alma Thomas, A Fantastic Sunset
Courtesy Anonymous. ©Estate of Alma Thomas (Courtesy of the Hart Family)/Artists Rights Society, New York

"Glory of the World: Color Field Painting (1950s to 1983)" at NSU Art Museum

Possibly the most ambitious curatorial undertaking of this year, NSU Art Museum explores the wide world of color field painting. The show explores a generation of artists working in the wake of Mark Rothko, Barnett Newmann, and other abstract expressionists who sought to push abstract painting into bold, innovative new directions. The sheer volume of famous artists on display is impressive: Helen Frankenthaler's revolutionary stain paintings, works from Washington Color School artists including Alma Thomas and Sam Gilliam, and geometric abstractions from Kenneth Noland and Frank Stella are just some of the works included. On view Tuesday, November 21, through June 2024, at NSU Art Museum, 1 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale; 954-525-5500; nsuartmuseum.org. Tickets cost $5 to $16; free for members, NSU students, faculty, and staff, and children under 12.
click to enlarge
Hernan Bas, Conceptual Artist #16 (Performance Based; the founder and reigning champion of a weekly pillow fight tournament)
Photo by Silvia Ross. Image courtesy of the artist and Lehmann Maupin, New York, Hong Kong, Seoul, and London

"Hernan Bas: The Conceptualists" at the Bass

Miami-born Hernan Bas doesn't need much of an introduction around these parts. He's already a fixture at local art institutions such as the Rubell Museum and Fredric Snitzer Gallery and works out of a studio steps from his home in Little Havana. Still, for anyone unfamiliar with the artist's hyper-detailed, queerly decadent paintings of mythology, religious icons, literary characters, and other subjects, the Bass is the place to go. The Miami Beach museum is mounting a major show for the Cuban-American artist featuring 35 paintings, including his largest canvas yet. Most of the featured works derive from Bas' "Conceptualists" series, which gives the show its name and focuses on his signature portraits of pale, skinny lads obsessing over their current hyperfixation. On view Monday, December 4, through May 5, 2024, at the Bass, 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-673-7530; thebass.org. Tickets cost $8 to $15; free for members and Miami Beach residents.
click to enlarge
Gary Simmons, Hollywood
Pérez Art Museum Miami photo

"Gary Simmons: Public Enemy" at Pérez Art Museum Miami

Cartoons, boxing, sneakers, chalkboard drawings — there's plenty in New York-born, Los Angeles-based artist Gary Simmons' arresting work that people will find relatable. But his conceptual approach to American visual culture, manifested in his celebrated smudged-chalk paintings and austere installations, sets him apart with an incisive critique showing how racism persists in the things we encounter every day. Mounted initially at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago earlier this year, the major retrospective, "Public Enemy," marks Simmons' triumphant return to PAMM, where he executed the site-specific mural "Frozen in Time" in 2014. On view Tuesday, December 5, through April 28, 2024, at Pérez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-375-3000, pamm.org. Tickets cost $12 to $16; free for children under 6.
click to enlarge
Basil Kincaid, Courtship of Fireflies
Rubell Museum photo

"Basil Kincaid: Spirit in the Gift" at the Rubell Museum

The Rubells open an entire year's worth of exhibits all at once during Miami Art Week, which is good because the massive crowds that besiege the Allapattah institution every December make visiting the place inadvisable in peak season. You'll have all year to enjoy the museum's newest presentations, as the art-collecting Rubell family only changes things up once a year, and in 2023 they seem to be feeling the California love. Works from Los Angeles-based artists, including Lauren Halsey, Sharif Farrag, Alfonso Gonzalez Jr., and Patrick Martinez, will be featured, as will the main attraction, the museum's star-making, artist-in-residence exhibition. This year the honor goes to Basil Kincaid, a St. Louis-born African-American artist working mainly with found materials such as donated textiles and photos from books and magazines. On view Tuesday, December 5, at the Rubell Museum, 1100 NW 23rd St., Miami; 305-573-6090; rubellmuseum.org. Tickets cost $10 to $15.
KEEP NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls. Make a one-time donation today for as little as $1.