Other works in the room, just one part of the opening exhibition “The Everywhere Studio,” give the area a spartan feel, as if it were an artist’s studio. A piece by Edward and Nancy Kienholz, a wood structure with a hand dryer attached, stands against a wall opposite the Christo. In between is a piece that looks like a worktable. Again, it was difficult to tell whether it was part of the exhibition or a worker’s bench.
When the museum, whose admission is free to all visitors, opens December 1, there will be no question as to what is and isn’t art. When New Times visited the space earlier this month, however, preparations were still underway. A pyramid-shaped sculpture by Abigail Deville was being installed in the half-empty courtyard garden. Large metal storage containers holding artworks stood throughout the building’s three floors. Staffers near the entrance were erecting folding chairs and tables.
“The front desk is being delivered next week,” Gartenfeld said.
Another work on the first floor is an installation by Senga Nengudi, who works with plastic. Sheets of bubble wrap veil a pair of paintings on the wall, obscuring them from view like transparent curtains. A large carpet of the same material lies in the center, and, yes, museum guests are allowed to touch it.
“Although,” Gartenfeld said, “I’d rather if they didn’t know that.”
Institute of Contemporary Art Grand Opening. Noon Friday, December 1, at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, 61 NE 41st St., Miami; 305-901-5272; icamiami.org. Admission is free.