Temporary Contemporary

Friends of the Bass Museum, Inc. d/b/a Bass Museum of Art

Funding Received: 2012
Miami Beach, FL
Funding Period: 1 year and 5 months
June 1, 2013

This month, the Bass Museum of Art is opening a new tc:temporary contemporary project called “Pleasure, Fear, and the Pursuit of Happiness” (2013). The project consists of large vinyl circles on the ground, each of which contains various textual phrases. To begin this project, Collazo-Lorens prepared questionnaires that were given to visitors of the Bass Museum of Art in late 2012. These questionnaires probed visitors’ experiences with Miami Beach, their reasons for visiting, and their hopes and fears attached to being in this specific place. As the questionnaires did not ask for names, the responses were often brutally honest; others were nonsensical.

After collecting these thoughts from visitors, Collazo-Lorens sifted through the responses and culled several phrases to be used in this project. Using a sampling approach, the phrases here lack context and meaning—instead, they are to be read without any background information. That is, when we read these phrases, we are unaware of who wrote them and what the writers were referring to specifically. For instance, one of the vinyl circles was inscribed with the phrases: “confront an expiring universe,” “hidden in plain sight,” and “mystically hot.” Not only do these phrases fail to specifically relate to each other, it is unclear exactly what they refer to. Instead, the viewer of these works is left with a personal, abstracted account of Miami Beach.  This project embodies a key tenet of our tc:temporary contemporary program: by placing provocative art in public spaces, we provide opportunities to shape the way people respond to their surroundings.