BEST MUSEUM PROGRAMMING
The Bass (2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305.673.7530) In late 2017, Ugo Rondinone’s installation of 45 life-size clowns amazed us. Last month, The Haas Brothers’ Ferngully and its colorful cast of characters tickled our whimsy. We’re certain many more surprises are on the way.
BEST HOMEGROWN GALLERY
Primary Projects (15 NE 39th St., Miami, 954.296.1675) Books Bischoff, Cristina Gonzalez and Typoe Gran strive to connect new voices in contemporary art with Miami’s art lovers. We can’t wait to see how they continue to do that in 2019 when their new location in Little River opens its doors.
BEST PRIVATE MUSEUM
De la Cruz Collection (23 NE 41st St., Miami, 305.576.6112) Before there was much in terms of art and retail in the Design District, collectors Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz opened this dynamic space to share their modern and contemporary art collection with the city, and Miami culture is all the better for it.
BEST PERMANENT COLLECTIONS
The Wolfsonian-FIU (1001 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 305.531.1001) Art & Design in the Modern Age showcases the vast holdings of American and European artifacts that are found in The Wolfsonian-FIU’s archives and it also gives us insight into the cerebral approach of the museum’s curatorial staff.
BEST MUSEUM EXPERIENCE
Pérez Art Museum Miami (1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305.375.3000) We love PAMM for many reasons, and topping the list is the flow created by the dynamic Herzog & de Meuron architecture, which allows us to be standing beneath hanging gardens and overseeing Biscayne Bay one moment and enthralled in light sculptures by José Carlos Martinat the next.
BEST ART DEALER
Gary Nader (62 NE 27th St., Miami, 305.576.0256) Decades in the art business and access to masterworks by Botero, Matisse, Miró and Picasso have made Gary Nader the go-to guy for blue-chip art.
BEST VENUE COMEBACK
ArtCenter/South Florida (924 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, 305.674.8278) Thanks to the appointment of Dennis Scholl as president and CEO in late 2017, this exhibition space has put local artists at the forefront with programming and events that recognize and nurture homegrown talent.
BEST CHAMBER ORCHESTRA
Nu Deco Ensemble Sam Hyken and Jacomo Rafael Bairos are creators of the most inspiring kind and their chamber orchestra is a testament to musical virtuosity. Catch them in action on Jan. 26 at the North Beach Bandshell and you’ll see what we mean.
Eduardo Marturet Seeing the music director and conductor of the Miami Symphony Orchestra at work is watching inspiration come alive. His interpretations of Mozart and Beethoven works have been described by some classical music lovers as transcendent.
BEST LITERARY INFLUENCER
Mitchell Kaplan Whether it’s through the programming at his various Books & Books stores or his continued support of the Miami Book Fair, Mitchell Kaplan’s love for the written word is as poetic as it is integral to Miami’s cultural evolution.
BEST PERFORMANCE VENUE
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305.949.6722) Whether it’s at the Ziff Ballet Opera House, the Knight Concert Hall or the Carnival Studio Theater, the Arsht hosts close to 400 productions a year. All may not receive standing ovations, but its state-of-the-art performance spaces have nothing to do with that.