June 2011, Volume 15, Number 3

Cultural Spotlight

AGS Enlivens Region’s Arts Scene

MDC's Art Gallery System (AGS) has consistently played a vital role in our community's cultural education by providing an engaging array of exhibition programs and activities for South Florida's thriving arts scene.

AGS broke new ground in its 2010-11 season with smART, an innovative initiative that used the exhibition format as a fundraising tool for MDC's American Dream Scholarship Fund. In addition, it featured scores of renowned contemporary artists working in Latin America. The strong cultural ties created with the galleries and artists living in the region were a first for AGS and the College.

Aware that we cannot look toward the future without revisiting the past, AGS also featured a variety of powerful exhibitions. Past is History – Future is Mystery offered a haunting showcase of works by many artists in the tradition of political dissent through art, appropriately displayed at MDC's historic Freedom Tower venue and curated by Rafael López-Ramos. Ways of Worldmaking, Notes on a Passion for Collecting offered a unique opportunity for the public to see one of the most encyclopedic collections of Cuban and Cuban-American art in Miami through the eyes of its collectors, Dr. Arturo and Liza Mosquera. Also adding to the exciting list of exhibitions at the Freedom Tower this season was the video exhibition ¡Patria o Libertad!, curated by Paco Barragan, in which a group of international artists dealt with universal social and political issues.

More recently, MDC's InterAmerican Campus made history when it built the world's largest omni-truncated, 600-cell polyhedron math sculpture, a 10-foot-diameter Zometool™ structure under the auspices of the Student Leadership Academy group.

At MDC West, renowned Cuban sculptor, craftsman and printmaker Roberto Estopiñán attended the opening of Roberto Estopiñán, Homage to a Great Master on His 90th Anniversary, a solo exhibition celebrating his 90th birthday and presented by AGS along with private collector and curator Gustavo Orta.

Returning to his alma mater at North Campus for Learning Gives You Wings, the esteemed Cuban artist Rafael Consuegra was proud to contribute his part to the four-year-old Miami International Sculpture Park initiative with his unique outdoor sculpture installation that was commissioned by North Campus. "I was very, very lucky to find several teachers at MDC who really gave me a hand," said the Class of '69 alum, commenting on the crucial role that Miami Dade College played in his artistic development.

His work now stands, along with that of many others, as a testament to the power of opportunity at MDC.

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