Open Sesame

In Ragnar Kjartansson’s 2007 video installation, God, the artist channels a Vegas lounge lizard, warbling “sorrow conquers happiness” over and over again, shattering visitors’ nerves and rattling their brains. The work is on view in “At Capacity: Large-Scale Works From the Permanent Collection” at the Museum of Contemporary Art. The exhibit showcases many of the institution’s iconic pieces collected over the past 15 years. Also clamoring for attention during MOCA’s quince celebration is Jack Pierson’s Paradise Lights, a huge neon Vegas marquee; and Dennis Oppenheim’s booming self-portrait, Attempt to Raise Hell. In the latter, the artist repeatedly bangs his head against a large cast-iron bell, causing unsuspecting spectators to bounce out of their shoes. Also on exhibit is “Open Process: New Work by Miami Artists,” which furthers MOCA’s efforts to support a bumper crop of emerging local talent such as Jessica Laurel Arias, Autumn Casey, Domingo Castillo, and Tatiana Vahan. The artists were set free in the museum’s archives for inspiration and left to create their own installations. “This exhibition provides an opportunity for us to really collaborate with a small group of artists and to concentrate on their needs,” says Ruba Katrib, MOCA’s associate curator. “I believe the process of working on this exhibition will be an incredible resource that the artists can refer to as they continue to develop their careers.” T
Sat., April 2, 11 a.m., 2011
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