During the High Renaissance, Michelangelo once said, “Every block of stone has a statue inside of it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.” Ornate tombs of Ancient Egypt, grandiose marble statues of Greek gods of the Classical era, whimsical porcelain figures of the Baroque period — the art of sculpture has traversed artistic movements and influenced artisans from around the world.
Sculptures have dated back to the earliest humans, and the form has only continued to evolve. Take an excursion through modern sculpture during your next visit to Aventura Mall. We believe that the magic of art should be accessible — even during shopping trips. The Arts Aventura Mall Collection features more than 20 works from renowned international artists. Iconic sculptures and installations line the wings of the mall, fusing artistic brilliance into everyday life.
During your next visit, be sure to find these four fantastic creations.
If you’ve studied art history, you might know a thing or two about Donald Baechler. The American artist emerged in the Neo-Expressionist and Art Pop movements of the 1980s with his vibrant paintings and child-like sculptures. According to ArtNet, Baechler’s love of art began at five years old when he’d take trips to the museum with his parents in Hartford, Conn. He carried that ambition to college, where he studied art formally at universities in Baltimore, New York, and Germany.
Baechler’s work exudes innocence, capturing the simple gestures and figures. Often inspired by children, the New York-based artist imitates the naivete of non-artist with a playful and sophisticated tone. In his Walking Figure, located on the Lower Level, a young woman strides forward with purpose. Captured mid-step, the sculpture has become a favorite for shoppers to emulate and pose with for a photo opp.
When it comes to sculpture, Louis Bourgeois is one of the greats. The French-American artist’s vast collection spans eight decades (1930-2010), making her a giant within the contemporary art movement. Bourgeois’s magnificent large-scale sculptures and installations often evoke elements of her childhood trauma, growing up with conflicting parents during World War I. She weaved in the personalities of her parents into some of her work, finding resolve and healing in the sculpture medium.
A trailblazer in her time, Bourgeois was the first woman artist to be given a retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Her work can be found in prestigious galleries and museums across the world, as well as Aventura Mall. Visit Bourgeois’s eye benches on the Lower Level to see one of the late artist’s works up close. Bourgeois has said, “Whether it is an eye that sees the reality of things or whether it is an eye that sees a world of fantasy…It is the quality of your eyes and the strength of your eyes that are expressed here. Nobody is going to keep me from seeing what is instead of what I would like.”
Considered the father of the American art furniture movement, Wendell Castle’s work is found in more than 40 museums and cultural institutions worldwide, including The Arts Aventura Mall Collection. Blurring the lines between form and function, the late artist challenged the role of traditional furniture with an illustrious career that spanned four decades. The artistic pioneer sought to challenge norms with imaginative forms that carry his own sense of humor and creativity. “I want to be inventive and playful, to produce furniture that makes life an adventure,” Castle once said.
In Veiled in a Dream, Castle’s bronze sculpture provides visitors with both a chair to sit on and an object to admire. Visit the Upper Level to gaze at Castle’s original piece from afar or take a seat and envelop yourself in the artist’s own imagination.
Ugo Rondinone first emerged as an artist in the 1990s and remains active today. His vibrantly colored totems and clay sculptures have captivated onlookers in galleries and exhibits across the globe. One of the Swiss-born artist’s best-known pieces is Seven Magic Mountains, a collection of seven 35-foot painted totems in the desert of Nevada. According to the Reno Gazette Journal, the work garners around 1,000 visitors per day.
Luckily, you don’t have to trek into the desert to see a Rondinone up close. Moonrise. East, located on the Upper Level, is a 12-part sculpture series that marks Rondinone’s first free-standing figurative sculptures. Unique from his totems, the figures are disembodied heads set atop a plinth weathered wood. Each head represents a month of the year, while the entire collection embodies the rise of the moon and the Western night sky. The rich textured artwork, crafted from clay, features Rondinone’s fingerprints and creates movement within its stylized surface.
Aventura Mall is overflowing with inspiration at every corner. Visit us to see the 20+ works from artists around the world.