Frost Spring Openings Challenge the Concept of Art 4/17/09

FIU’s New Frost Art Museum announces Spring Openings That Challenge the Concept of Art

Miami, (April 15, 2009) – The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum at Florida International University announces major spring openings: Because I Say So from The Scholl Collection, Genetic Portraits by Nela Ochoa, and the Kenan-Flagler Family Discovery Gallery on Friday, April 17, 2009 at 6 p.m. at The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum located at 10975 SW 17 Street, Miami, FL 33199. The event is free and open to the public. Also on view will be FIU’s BFA student show, Wake.

“The exhibits, although inherently different in all respects, explore and test the limits of creativity,” said Dr. Carol Damian, director & chief curator for The Frost.

In Because I Say So, viewers will note how sculpture in particular has confounded the status-quo, especially when it defies the ordinary association with works of art, or is considered as “installation” art, or as a part of an installation. The pedestals of the past, now long forsaken, are replaced by transformative environments, sometimes entire rooms dedicated to a single artist’s work. The viewer is confounded, confronted, invited, and amazed as one becomes immersed in the space. Works are placed directly on the floor; hung from the ceiling; described in site-specific locations; cantilevered off the walls; defiantly testing notions of scale, and stimulating daring responses. Each artist provides the viewer with a point of departure for an exploration of different levels of the mind and intellect not possible with traditional sculpture or painting.

Major collectors Debra and Dennis Scholl present the often unseen sculpture that is central to their significant contemporary art collection. They describe their process as looking for “work that succeeds both on and below the surface, evoking a strong response, and not necessarily a positive one. “So long as a viewer is engaged enough to give a reaction, either one of pleasure or discomfort, we feel that the work has succeeded”.

Genetic Portraits by Nela Ochoa, a prolific and internationally recognized multi-media artist, offers works in the areas of video art, sculpture, and performance to explore the genetic codes of human bodies.Her interest in the human body has led her to work with medical images such as X-rays and MRI’s, integrating them into videos, paintings and installations. Her most recent work has led her further into the body, where she explores the mysteries of DNA.

The Kenan-Flagler Family Discovery Gallery allows visitors to experience interactive activities designed to educate and entertain. This state-of-the-art Discovery Gallery consists of 13 stations including the computer-based display, Picture Yourself, where a camera takes an image of a person’s face and reproduces it on a touch screen. Participants can then trace the contours of the face with their fingers and print the finished product. The Discovery Gallery will also include a sculpture garden based on the works of the Sculpture Park collection housed on the Florida International University Park Campus; a rubbing station where children can rub images embedded onto a table to make their own print; and a textures station based on works in The Frost Museum’s Permanent Collection.

What: The Opening of Because I Say So Sculpture Collection of Dennis and Debra Scholl,
Genetic Portraits by Nela Ochoa, BFA student show: Wake, andThe Kenan-Flagler
Family Discovery Gallery
Where: The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum at Florida International University
10975 SW 17th Street
Miami, FL 33196
When: 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., April 17, 2009

The Frost Art Museum opened its current 46,000-square-foot state of the art building in November 2008. Over 10,000 people have visited The Museum in its new building since its opening. Admission to The Museum is always free.

The Kenan-Flagler Discovery Gallery is made possible due to the support of the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust established in 1965 from the estate of William Rand Kenan, Jr. Mr. Kenan was born in Wilmington in 1872 and graduated from UNC in 1894. Mr. Kenan was a scientist, chemical and mechanical engineer, business executive, dairy farmer and philanthropist.

About the Frost Art Museum – Florida International University
The Frost is an AAM accredited museum and Smithsonian affiliate. The museum is located at 10975 SW 17th St. across from the Blue garage and adjacent to the Wertheim Performing Arts Center on the University Park campus. Its hours of operation are Tuesday through Saturday 10- 5.and Sunday noon-5. The Frost is closed on all legal holidays. For more information, please visit or call 305-348-2890.