Curated by Albie Alexander, Founding Creative Director of 29Rooms, the exhibition examines our deep connection with the natural world through artwork and programming within the open-air shopping center during Miami Art Week 2019
In its third year participating in Miami Art Week, Swire Properties Inc, the visionary developer behind the gleaming mixed-use Brickell City Centre (BCC), announced the theme, curator, and initial lineup of artists for its annual art exhibition with more soon to be announced.
Conversations with Nature, curated by Albie Alexander, founding creative director behind Refinery29’s sensational 29Rooms, invites the public to wander through site-specific installations and artworks that pay homage to Mother Nature through multidisciplinary experiences and interactive programming.
Free to the public, Conversations with Nature will be taking over BCC’s open-air shopping center by disrupting some of the center’s public spaces and transforming select storefronts. Themes of activism and healing permeate the exhibition, which explores resonances of mindfulness in an effort to develop new understandings of ourselves and achieve new visions of the future.
Over the course of four days, a series of installations and programming will invite visitors to experience interconnectedness with each other and with Earth as a pathway to inspire positive action in the fight against climate change.
This marks Alexander’s Miami Art Week debut alongside newly commissioned works of art and programming from renowned to rising artists, art-activists and thought leaders including:
Basia Goszczynska is a Brooklyn-based artist working at the intersection of art and environmental activism with current work headlining Arcadia Earth exhibition in New York City. Goszczynska will present two installations at Conversations with Nature:
Legacy Oasis is a life-sized sand pit contaminated with microplastics, marine debris and beach toys that visitors are invited to take a rest, ponder and sift through. Guests can meet the artist to discuss environmental issues and trade their gathered microplastics from the sand pit in exchange for one of the artist’s signed Rainbow Collections jars, which are salvaged jars filled with a specific array of colorful, confetti-like ocean plastics. Location: BCC Garden Deck, level two near Zara.
Legacy Forest will reference rising pollution and hurricane patterns. The work will correlate our daily habits of wastefulness and our overconsumption of plastics with global warming. Using marine debris and recycled materials, Basia will create a forest of towering plinths that will resemble human figures and trees to raise awareness around consumption and waste. Location: Legacy Oasis: Garden Deck, L2 near Zara; Legacy Forest: Metro Green, L3 next to Metromover Station
Brittany Asch of BRRCH + Yrsa Daley-Ward team up together for the first time to produce Inner Landscapes. In this immersive installation, Brittany Asch of BRRCH, well-known for creating otherworldly floral installations for brands like Glossier and Gucci, will transform an ethically sourced fallen tree into a surreal “fantasy tree” adorned with varying flora and fauna within one of BCC’s storefronts. Playing throughout the installation will be original poetry from Yrsa Daley-Ward, a New York Times best-selling author and prolific poet, whose spoken word will serve as the imaginative voice of Mother Nature. Visitors will be invited to step into a fantastical realm of majestic beauty to explore their connection with Mother Nature as one of us, “I am you” she softly proclaims as a reminder that she has been and always will be part of us. Location: Unit #266 (L2, near Mac & Ondademar)
Sarah Meyohas is a visual artist working across media and is lauded for her poignant commentary on the state of our world; from her loud and artful statements on humanity, economic systems and the future of this earth. In Cloud of Petals, visitors will be invited to take a seat and watch a meditative film of 100,000 unique rose petals shifting from states of absence to presence as a commentary on the fragility of nature. The experience will ask visitors to reflect on their own relationship with the natural world while listening to a powerful monologue from Greta Thunberg that plays throughout the space. Location: Unit #324 (L3, near Saks & Drybar)
Greta Thunberg’s #FridayForFuture ARTivism Studio. #FridayForFuture is a viral movement that began in August 2018 after Greta Thunberg sat in front of the Swedish parliament every school day for three weeks to protest against the lack of action on the climate crisis. Conversations with Nature’s ARTivism Studio will serve as a platform and creative space for visitors and locals alike to create their very own protest art for upcoming Fridays For Future Miami demonstrations or display as community art at BCC. Artwork for this installation has been sourced from Fridays for Future Miami, Glug and Amplifier. Location: L3, Public bridge across from Dr. Smood
Laraaji, a notable musician, mystic and laughter meditation practitioner and Maryam Ajayi , an energy healer endorsed by Goop, will transform one of BCC’s storefronts into an inclusive meditation den. Open to the public, a series of daily 45-minute workshops led by Laraaji and Ajayi will be anchored in the elements of Earth, Air, Fire, Water through various practices such as reiki therapy, aromatherapy, guided meditations, sound baths and more. Location: #364 (L3, near Rodilla and AT&T)
Miami International University of Art & Design (MIU) students Sinead Aleung, Emily Gonzalen and Raquel Zabib have been selected to produce original works at Conversations with Nature. Each student will transform recycling bins into a canvas of expression with the theme of environmental activism throughout BCC’s open-air retail center. Location: Public spaces
“Nature provides us with spaces of healing, and we need to preserve and protect them,” said Albie Alexander, creative director of Conversations with Nature, “The natural world has cradled our existence and has been our greatest provider and reflector throughout history. As we face the beginning of a climate and environmental crisis unlike anything we’ve seen, it casts a new light on our relationship with nature. Conversations with Nature will be an inclusive and immersive experience for visitors to disconnect with the overwhelming noise of the modern world and reflect on the relationship between themselves and nature in an effort to humanize the ecological crisis more and inspire transformative action.”
“Swire has been a longtime patron of the arts and advocate for sustainable and conscious living,” said Kieran Bowers, President of Swire Properties Inc, the developer behind Brickell City Centre. “Conversations with Nature is a poetic representation of these two principles, and we are honored to work with Albie and his team to bring it to life. Our ultimate goal is for Brickell City Centre to act as gathering space for the sharing of ideas and experiences for the community.”