MIAMI BEACH, FL.- The WolfsonianFlorida International University
(FIU) will use lighting and digital technology to convert the museums exterior façades into public exhibition spaces, thanks to a new, $500,000 challenge grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
The Art of Illumination: Illuminating the Arts aims to expand the museums reach and visibility. The concept was developed for The Wolfsonian in 2005 by Herves Descottes and LObservatoire Internationale, based in NYC.
Emerging from 1,562 applications, The Wolfsonian was one of 20 South Florida cultural institutions and artists to receive the grant through Knight Foundations 2009 Knights Arts Challenge, a community-wide contest that aims to bring South Floridas diverse community together through the arts. The Wolfsonian's innovative project will not only elevate the museum's status as a civic landmark, but also enhance Miami Beachs international reputation as a center for art and design, said Dennis Scholl, Miami program director for Knight Foundation.
The 2009 Knights Arts Challenge is an extremely important grant for us and we are so grateful for this support. Because of its location in Miami Beachs historic architectural district, The Wolfsonian is a source of energy and inspiration in the life of the city. The Art of Illumination will help the Wolfsonian tap into this energy, explains Cathy Leff, director of The Wolfsonian. The exterior façades of our building will carry digital media, allowing us to enhance the reach of the museums presence and elevate the museums mission as a public institution that provides opportunities to study, learn from, and appreciate the power of design to influence our daily lives.
Support from Knight Foundation will enable The Wolfsonian to turn the inside of the building out and use images on the buildings exterior façades, ranging from large-scale digital reproductions of pieces in the museums collection, to commissioned contemporary works that convey the museums mission, illuminating the active role of design in shaping every day life experiences. The technology will be flexible to allow for displays in a variety of formats, including images, video, film, photography, and static and/or moving texteven interactive mobile technology. Ultimately, the exterior digital media exhibition will allow viewers not only to contemplate the historical significance of the collection, but also understand its relevance to the world today.