Artbeat | New Times Broward-Palm Beach


Given its predominantly Cuban-born populace, it's no surprise that Miami is a national epicenter for Latin-American art, an art community focused mainly on cultural roots. But what of those Latino artists who'd rather fit into the mainstream and not be bound to a single cultural mold? Such artists might want to try their luck a little north, at Lurie Fine Art Gallery in Boca Raton. "A lot of Latin artists are coming up from Miami, wanting to be mainstream artists, not Latin artists," gallery owner Bruce Lurie says. Featuring works by some 30 international artists, the gallery focuses on (but is not limited to) Latino and Chicano artists. Styles range from the figurative to the abstract, sometimes melding the two, as in the mixed-media pieces of Chilean-born Lula Flores. Her Picasso-like compositions pay equal attention to form and color, loosely drawing lines that often blend human figures with geometric shapes. Much more defined are the colorfully bold paintings of Carlos Luna, whose varied subjects include anything from Jesus on the cross to a woman carried sideways by a knife-wielding rooster-man. Luna flattens his images by placing everything in the foreground; only the warms and cools of his contrasting color schemes give the illusion of depth. The gallery does have its share of three-dimensional artwork as well, most notably in the sculptures of Italian L'oriano Galloni, to which the gallery has exclusive representation in the States. The exaggerated features of Galloni's elongated figures have made them not only the gallery's main sculptural attraction but have earned the attention of world-class museums like the Guggenheim and the Whitney in New York City. Lurie's next big show opens November 11, featuring figurative pieces by Humberto Castro, Leonel Matheau, and Sergio Payares, three of the top contemporary Cuban-American artists. (Through December 2 at Lurie Fine Art Gallery, located inside the Gallery Center, 608 Banyan Trl., Boca Raton, 561-989-8933, -- Jason Budjinski


27th Annual Faculty Art Exhibition: About 30 of the nearly 300 instructors at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale participated in this show, contributing 60 or so works in a variety of media old and new. Some of the art tries too hard, as in cartoonish political commentary and pieces that too obviously allude to their influences. The best work, however, is relatively simple, straightforward, and traditional: Jim Radford's pleasingly old-fashioned, realistic sculpture; three wonderfully disorienting collages by Janet Gold; a remarkably rich charcoal and acrylic rendering of a tug pulling a ship, by Trina Renée Nicklas. Thanks to Hurricane Frances, the show's opening was delayed, and its run may be extended. Call to confirm. (Through October 7 at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, Mark K. Wheeler Gallery, 1799 SE 17th St. Cswy., Fort Lauderdale, 954-463-3000.)

Adhesive 44: Fulfilling art writer John Berger's prediction that museums of the future would ultimately disappear and be replaced by personal arrangements of reproductions and printed ephemera, Brazilian artist Jac Leirner unpacks her decalcomania at the Miami Art Museum. Composed of hundreds of stickers adhered to two rows of windowpanes and extending some 40 feet in length, Adhesive 44 exposes a universe of archetypal images that flickers in the mind's eye like constellations. This work speaks to the obsession with brands and logos by which humans organize themselves into groups and tribes. (Through October 10 at the Miami Art Museum, 100 W Flagler St., Miami, 305-375-3000.)