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Rubell Museum opens in new home
Don Rubell, (left to right) Kehinde Wiley Sleep, 2008 oil on canvas, 132 x 300 in (335.3 x 762 cm), and Keith Haring, Untitled, 1981. Enamel on fiberboard. 48 x 48 in (121.9 x 121. 9 cm). ©Keith Haring Foundation. Photo: Nicholas Venezia, Courtesy of Selldorf Architects.

MIAMI, FLA.- The Rubell Museum unveiled its new space on December 4, 2019. Its inaugural exhibition fills all 40 galleries with 300 works by 100 artists. Drawn from the Rubells’ extensive holdings of over 7,200 works by more than 1,000 artists, the installation is one of the most far-ranging museum exhibitions of contemporary art ever presented. With defining and seminal works by artists whom the Rubells championed early in their careers, and by those who had been overlooked, the exhibition chronicles key artists, moments, and movements in vital art centers over the past 50 years, retracing the Rubells’ collecting journey.

Housed in six former industrial buildings, connected and transformed by Selldorf Architects, the Museum unfolds on a single level, with 40 galleries, flexible performance space, an extensive art research library, a bookstore, and an indoor-outdoor restaurant that opens onto a courtyard garden, on a 100,000 square-foot campus. Originally launched in 1993 as the Rubell Family Collection/Contemporary Art Foundation, the museum has been renamed to underscore the Rubells’ dedication to serving as a public resource. Its new home, located in Allapattah, less than a mile from its former space in Wynwood, enables the Rubells to exhibit more of their collection than ever before and share it with the public.

Highlights from the inaugural installation include:

• Works acquired by the Rubells very early in artists’ careers, including Cindy Sherman's Untitled Film Still (#21) (1978); Jeff Koons' New Hoover Convertible (1980); Keith Haring's Statue of Liberty (1982); George Condo's K-9 Explosion (1986); Rosemarie Trockel's Untitled (1986); Richard Prince's Untitled (cowboy) (1987); Cady Noland's This Piece Has No Title (1989); Elizabeth Peyton’s Burkhard Riemschneider (1995); and Kerry James Marshall's Untitled (1998-1999).

• American painters whose work is included in the Rubells’ traveling exhibition 30 Americans, on view at the Barnes Foundation through January 12, including Nina Chanel Abney, Rashid Johnson, Henry Taylor, Hank Willis Thomas, Mickalene Thomas, Carrie Mae Weems, Kehinde Wiley, and Purvis Young.

• A survey of German artists, with works by Isa Genzken, Anselm Kiefer, Neo Rauch, and Paloma Varga Weisz.

• New paintings by Amoako Boafo, the Rubells’ annual artist-in-residence, and the first artist working at the new Museum. Mera Rubell said, “Amoako has a profound insight into the human face- he uses his hands on the canvas like a sculpture.” The artist-in-residence program is supported by the Knight Foundation. The exhibition will also include commissioned works by former artists in residence, including Jonathan Lyndon Chase, Lucy Dodd, Cy Gavin, Sonia Gomes, Oscar Murillo, Sterling Ruby, and Allison Zuckerman.

• Two immersive works by Yayoi Kusama, including Where the Lights in My Heart Go (2016) and INFINITY MIRRORED ROOM – LET’S SURVIVE FOREVER (2017).

• Extensive installations of contemporary Los Angeles artists, featuring works from the 1980s and early 1990s by such artists as John Baldessari, Mike Kelley, Barbara Kruger, Paul McCarthy, Catherine Opie, Charles Ray, and Kaari Upson.

• Five galleries dedicated to New York appropriation artists of the early 1980s, including works by Peter Halley, Jenny Holzer, Louise Lawler, Robert Longo, David Salle, Philip Taaffe, Meyer Vaisman, and Christopher Wool.

• A selection of works from the 100 studio visits the Rubells made in China between 2001 and 2012 by artists such as Ai Weiwei, Qiu Zhijie, and Zhu Jinshi.

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