Miami-Dade County Art in Public Places recognized nationally by Americans for the Arts for outstanding work in Public Art 2014 Year in Review
Public Art Projects at PortMiami by Artists Bhakti Baxter and Jim Drain Selected as Among the Nation's Best
(MIAMI, June 18, 2014) – Miami-Dade County Art in Public Places received national recognition during the annual Americans for the Arts Conference, held in Nashville, TN, June 11-15, 2014. A program of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, Miami-Dade Art in Public Places was recognized as commissioning some of the most innovative and exciting examples of public art in America.
Developed by the Americans for the Arts' Public Art Network, the Public Art 2014 Year in Review selects the most exemplary public art projects completed between April 2013, and April 2014, in the United States. Adjudicated and curated by Cath Brunner, Director of Public Art, 4Culture-Cultural Development Authority of King County, Seattle, WA, Ralph Helmick, Artist, Newton, MA, and Janet Zweig, artist, Brooklyn, NY, the projects were selected out of a field of more than 340 entries, with only the top 37 projects in the nation being showcased.
“We are proud to receive this prestigious acknowledgment of the quality and creativity of the artists’ projects being commissioned by our program,” said Michael Spring, Director, Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs. “These innovative public art commissions were so successful because of the close collaboration with our colleagues at PortMiami. We are particularly grateful for this recognition because these public art works are the first ones for two talented Miami artists.”
Miami-Dade projects featured in the Public Art 2014 Year in Review were Bhakti Baxter’s Coral Reef City, an installation of eighteen parking toll booth wraps featuring macro photographs of corals produced in collaboration with Coral Morphologic, a Miami-based scientific art endeavor led by marine biologist Colin Foord and musician Jared McKay; and Jim Drain’s The Bollard Project, consisting of 1,000 artist-designed bollards thoughtfully arranged in color sequences and rigorous geometries that reference maritime flag signage. These works of art have transformed the entire landscape of PortMiami into an outdoor public sculpture and serve to enrich one of America's busiest ports, welcoming more than 4 million cruise vacationers each year.
About the Artists
Bhakti Baxter (1979) was born in Miami, Florida, where he currently lives and works. Baxter received his BFA from the New World School of the Arts College in Miami and his work has been featured in numerous group and solo exhibitions in Miami and around the world. Investigating the territory amid science and spirituality, his practice aims to bridge a medial relationship between the seemingly ordinary and the interpretive freedom of abstraction.
Jim Drain (1975) was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and is currently based in Miami, Florida. Drain has exhibited extensively throughout the United States and Europe. He was awarded the Baloise Prize for his Statements exhibition at Art Basel in 2005, participated in the DAAD residency program in Berlin in 2008, and was commissioned to create a site-specific installation for a new US Embassy compound in Rabat, Morocco. His work is held in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, among others.
*Images and project descriptions are available upon request
Americans for the Arts' Public Art Network (PAN) develops professional services for the broad array of individuals and organizations engaged in the expanding field of public art. More than 300 public art programs exist in the United States at the federal, state, and local level. PAN is designed to provide services to the diverse field of public art and to develop strategies and tools to improve communities through public art.