Karen Rifas and Kerry Phillips have more in common than the first letter of their first names, although at first it might not seem so. Rifas’s work should be familiar to many – in particular her linear, site-specific installations that involve optical illusion and delicate interventions. Her pieces can be found at MAM, MOCA and, until recently, at the Bernice Steinbaum Gallery (which closed last year). Phillips is on the early end of her career, but has also had a lot of recent exposure, at the ArtCenter/South Florida and the Hollywood Arts and Cultural Center, to name a few outlets.
I am not a Latina. I am a middle-aged white guy whose salsa dancing embarrasses my Venezuelan-born wife. But because she is a Latina, and because my teen-aged daughter is half Latina, I take more than passing interest in how popular culture portrays Latinas. And these days I’m annoyed, because the most popular Latina image out there is, well, almost as embarrassing as my salsa dancing.
It’s an image, in fact, that represents a setback for Latinas.
Back in the late 1990‘s at the original NORMAN’S restaurant in Coral Gables we had a young man who became our Lunch Chef named Eliecer Garcia. Like many young chefs he was very interested in cuisines from all over and when we talked about what to put on our lunch menu his ideas ranged from France to Hong Kong. I loved that but sometimes I’d say, “Eliecer. I want you to show me flavors your Cuban Grandmother would make and then we can twist them a little. Okay? Why don’t you show me how she would cook with … oh… boniato for instance? And then we’ll go from there.”
The All Florida Juried Competition and Exhibition opening reception recently at the Boca Museum of Art drew in a packed, frenzied crowd to its 62nd-annual showcase featuring 149 multimedia works. But it was the overheard exclamations of “That’s disgusting!” and “I can’t even watch this!” that stood out during the evening’s discourse.
What was so gross? A throng of well-heeled attendees swarmed about, cringing midway through the gallery. There it was, two flat screens surmounted on a wall playing artist Gabrielle Wood’s video installations Displaced Pleasure.
For those in film school, the project is like a crash course and a final exam, jam packed into one restless weekend.
This is the Miami edition of the 48 Hour Film Project, an international event that gets play from local filmmakers from Israel and Johannesburg to Las Vegas, Nevada. The one constant -- you get 48 hours to complete a short film from scratch.
Young Singers of the Palm Beaches is a community choir celebrating its tenth anniversary. Here's a few minutes with Executive Director Beth Clark and Artistic Director D. Shawn Berry about the choir and its mission in the community. For more information, visit yspb.org.
Many have taken the recent closing of Barnes and Noble in Aventura and the general dearth of bookstores in Miami as an omen, a portentous sign that the city is somehow culturally headed in the wrong direction.
And the easy takedown of South Florida, both nationally and from locals, is that a lack of bookstores is representative of a stupid populace, or an uncultured mass mostly focused on booze and partying.
But bemoaning the death of the bookstore is missing the point. It’s happening everywhere. And it’s not just a South Florida issue.
In 1887 Marcus Weinkle’s loving parents buried him alive. That act likely saved the 13-year-old’s life and certainly set in motion an odyssey that took him from his native Russia to, eventually, Central Florida.
His story – and that of countless other Jewish immigrants with a Florida connection – comes alive in the Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU on Miami Beach.