Artist: Beatriz Chachamovits
Title:  Heliotropic Seekers
Temporary Public Art Installation, Española Way (between Washington Avenue and Collins Court)
March 6, 2024 – May 26, 2024

Program: Thursday, April 18, 2024, 5:30 p.m. (Washington Avenue and Española Way)

(See below for details on remarks and performance for special exhibition program)

The City of Miami Beach is pleased to present Heliotropic Seekers, a newly commissioned art installation by Brazilian artist Beatriz Chachamovits on Española Way between Washington and Collins avenues. The work is the fourth installment of the city’s Elevate Española series of site-specific installations over Española Way.

“My goal is to create site-specific projects that immerse people in coral reef communities. These experiences serve as platforms to showcase the urgent needs of coral reefs while highlighting their captivating beauty and life-sustaining role in our present and future,” shared Chachamovits. “I invite the public to discover a complex biological network, where the concept of ecosystem is materialized through organization, symmetry and repetition.”

Heliotropic Seekers features five brightly colored hanging plexiglass cutouts of various endangered species of fish and coral native to South Florida shores, including grouper, angel, grunt, blue tang and parrot fish joined by coral species such as elkhorn, pillar, staghorn, star, starlet and brain coral. The species overlap in various compositions, emphasizing the interdependence and diversity of coral reefs. Complementing the suspended cutouts is a mural painted in collaboration with students from Miami Beach Senior High School’s Painting 1 class.

The diverse marine species on display encourage spectators to immerse themselves in the flora and fauna of the surrounding marine ecosystem, which is inaccessible to most Miami Beach residents and visitors without diving into the ocean. By engaging with the natural world, viewers are prompted to consider how their behavior may affect coral reefs and inspire action to care for the world’s oceans.

Beatriz Chachamovits is an environmental artist and educator from São Paulo, Brazil living and working in Miami, Florida. Her work renders tangible the decline of the coral reef ecosystems, and the role played by humans in it. Her intention is to share the majestic beauty of at-risk marine ecologies as well as the appalling rate of their destruction. She works with monochromatic ceramic sculptures and drawings to highlight the unique shape, form and texture that exists in the underwater world. She is the author and illustrator of the “The Little Handbook of Marine Fishes and Other Aquatic Marvels” (Pequeno manual de peixe marinhos e outras maravilhas aquáticas), published by Companhia das Letrinhas in São Paulo, Brazil in 2018. Selected solo shows includes “White Sea” at Galeria Tato in São Paulo, Brazil (2017), “Into the Great Dying: Waters We Share” at Faena Art Project Room (2022) “Our Changing Seas” at the Frost Science Museum (2022). Selected group shows include: National Museum of Rio de Janeiro, “Coral Expedition: 1865 – 2018” (2018) The Phillip and Patricia Frost Science Museum “Transitional Nature” (2020), and the Art and Cultural Center of Hollywood “C[h]oral Stories and Collective Actions” (2022). Chachamovits’ work has recently been featured in Vogue Magazine’s Earth and Us section and in the National Geographic Education platform, part of an AAAS grant to teach fifth graders about women in marine science. She has received a prize from The Village of Pinecrest for artists and is a resident artist at The Bakehouse Art Complex in Wynwood, Miami.

Exhibition Program: April 18, 2024, 5:30 p.m.
Española Way (between Washington Avenue and Collins Court)

Music by Nicholas G. Padilla and Justice A. Gonzalez. Welcome remarks by City of Miami Beach officials, artist Beatriz Chachamovitz, and Dalton Hesley of the Coral Reef Restoration Lab/Rescue a Reef,

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