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She Came From the Jungle

In a world that pulsates with connectivity, you can email photos of unidentified plants to botanists in Brazil, and then check back moments later to find detailed information of their history. Curious about bowerbirds and their elaborately romantic mating rituals? Type the species into YouTube, then relax while David Attenborough provides video insight.

Exploring nature wasn’t always this way. In the late 19th century, Darwin was cuddling with giant tortoises, which in turn gave new data to how humans came to be so darn upright. Soon, inquisitiveness concerning exotic locations rose among artists and Modernism was born. Conceived in Romanticism’s afterbirth, this notion that nature’s unknown qualities could push the arts forward, away from stale depictions of regality, inspired a movement still cherished today. Nobody does Modernism like the Museum of Contemporary Art, so it only makes sense that it might tap into that early naturist sentiment for its newest exhibit “Dark Continents.”

A wish-list of international artists populate the gallery walls, but it’s Miami local Naomi Fischer who garnered a coveted installation space. Her painting, photography, and video amalgamation focuses primarily on “goddess” and “savage” myths — an evolved take on a primal era. Become enchanted by nature and its ties with the science and the female spirit before “Dark Continents” closes November 11. It’s happening at the MOCA (Joan Lehman Building, 770 NE 125 St., North Miami Beach). Tickets range from $3 to $5, and are free to North Miami Beach residents. Call 305-893-6211, or visit
Sat., Nov. 1, 2008


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