Sympathy for the Devil: Art and Rock and Roll Since 1967
Through September 7. Museum of Contemporary Art, 770 NE 125th St., North Miami; 305-893-6211, www.mocanomi.org
A nearly pitch-perfect twanging of complementary chords, this exhibition explores the deep-rooted and primal alliances between rebellious spirits haunting both the sonic and visual realms. It features more than 100 paintings, drawings, installations, and videos by 56 artists and artist collectives. The show was organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, where it drew stadium-size crowds, and judging by the throngs attending opening night, MoCA's turnstile numbers will skyrocket as well. Although some knuckleheads will bitch about holes in the exhibition's version of rock history, you can't leave without thinking you have to give this devil his due.
Disappearances, Shadows & Illusions
Through September 21. Miami Art Museum, 101 W. Flagler St., Miami; 305-375-3000, www.miamiartmuseum.org
This exhibit, which aspires to challenge traditional notions of how the public views art, features upward of 50 works by more than 20 artists. It boasts pieces from the Miami Art Museum's permanent collection, key loans from area collectors, and several installations commissioned from local artists, who ultimately pocket the show. These include Leyden Rodriguez-Casanova, Kerry Phillips, Matt Schreiber, and Tom Scicluna. The last delivers perhaps the single most cultivated device for absorbing the spirit of the show. Scicluna's amazing Shift is a freestanding wall that has been almost imperceptibly bent out of shape. He effectively subverts institutional authority by tinkering with the concept that museums themselves run the illusion game; with Shift, the artist has taken over.
Space Is the Place
Through September 25. Diaspora Vibe Gallery 3938 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 305-573-4046, www.diasporavibe.net
The current show at Diaspora Vibe — combining the work of 24 artists of Latin American, Caribbean, and African heritage — features an eclectic medley of video, installation, and sound pieces. Curator Ayanna Jolivet Mccloud has succeeded in assembling art that reflects the unfettered zones of the imagination and rewards viewers who play along with the at-times cacophonous presentation. A harmonic convergence of time-based art delivers an engaging multisensory experience. Among the works is Carolina Vasquez's video 25 years in 6 mins 15 secs, which assaults the peepers with a collage of the artist's life that flashes so quickly it makes the viewer dizzy and evokes a sense of memory at once moving and intriguingly ambiguous.
Excavating Egypt: Great Discoveries from the Petrie Museum
Through November 2. Lowe Art Museum, 1301 Stanford Dr., Coral Gables; 305-284-3535, www.lowemuseum.org
Not your garden-variety tomb raider or occultist crackpot, Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie became known as the father of Egyptian archaeology. Today his discoveries can be found in more than 120 museums across the globe. He made great breakthroughs in field excavation and invented a sequence-dating method that enabled reconstruction of history from ancient remains. This exhibit captures Petrie's life and times and features 221 of the scholar's finds. The show includes a treasure trove of sculptures, jewelry, pottery, painted vessels, and mummy portraits, as well as objects used in everyday life. They offer a tantalizing window into the ancient Egyptians' level of sophistication. The exhibition covers dozens of the sites on which Petrie worked.