There’s a reason nearly 10 million people call South Florida home. Outside of its bustling nightlife scene and world-class resorts (and exciting shopping centers…) the region has a vast tropical landscape with breathtaking scenery.
Surrounded by crystal blue waters and a 1,197-foot coastline, when you’re in South Florida, you’re never a far drive to the nearest beach. Better yet, we locals share the sunshine with thousands of unique species. Florida is one of the top states in the country with diverse wildlife that can be found nowhere else – in fact, there are 269 species you can only find here.
With wildlife abounding, it’s no wonder artists draw inspiration from Florida’s beauty. In the Arts Aventura Mall collection, we’ve curated more than 20 works from renowned artists around the globe. Of the vast collection, four South Florida artists have made it their mission to pay homage to the Sunshine State.
Te Ama La Pachamama – Spanish for Mother Earth Loves You – is artist Luis Valle’s love letter to nature. The sweeping mural, which spans an impressive 80 feet, is hard to miss while shopping the Upper Level.
In the work, Mother Earth stands serenely among a colorful sky of lilac, blues and mauves. She is surrounded by halos of vibrant dots that create an aura, emitting an ethereal glow. Her fierce
locks of hair branch out into tendrils of cherry blossom trees and she is rooted deeply in the ground she overlooks.
Mother Earth is the centerpiece of Valle’s expansive mural, but she is surrounded by life. Birds soar and a silhouette of lovers kiss in the foreground. Staring at the painting, visitors are bound to feel a magnetism to Valle’s work and perhaps a deeper appreciation for the land we walk on.
Valle, born in Nicaragua, immigrated to Miami at a young age. He went on to study at Florida State University and New York University before returning to South Florida to continue his thriving career. “I think growing up in a city with such vibrant colors has influenced my color palette as well. My work also tends to be a blend of styles and cultures, which is what I think Miami represents,” says Valle.
After visiting Paradise and Fries at Treats Food Hall, your mural tour continues: Nate Dee’s Cherish Home is a moving tribute to Florida’s endangered species and a call to honor the earth around us. The poignant mural depicts at-risk wildlife like the Miami blue butterfly, Florida panther, Florida coneflower and grasshopper sparrow.
History buffs might recognize the name Cherish Home from a prescient statement made by former president Theodore Roosevelt: “Cherish these natural wonders, cherish the natural resources, cherish the history and romance as sacred heritage, for your children and your
children’s children. Do not let selfish men or greedy interests skin your country of its beauty, its riches or its romance.”
As the world grapples with the consequences of climate change and the race to heal the planet, Roosevelt’s words are all the more imperative.
Dee has garnered national attention for his work, which has been featured in magazines such as Delve, Making Waves, WeMerge, DUO and The Miami New Times. In 2014, The New York Times noted that Dee was one of the top Miami artists on Instagram to follow.
While South Florida pride shines through Cherish Home, his portfolio pulls inspiration from his Haitian culture as well as the Art Nouveau movement and Hellenistic works.
From the city’s cerulean seas to its tropical gardens, the 305 is a wellspring of inspiration. Miami-based muralist Brian Butler captures the city’s boldness with his unique flair.
As an illustrator and muralist, Butler has collaborated with brands such as Vice, Target, Tumblr, Red Bull, Converse, Superfly, The Miami Heat and Pabst Blue Ribbon. His illustrations have graced prominent music festivals like Bonnaroo, SXSW and The Governor’s Ball.
Butler infuses his playful imagination into Paradise and Fries, his mural located near Aventura Mall’s Treats Food Hall. Animated tropical wildlife like the hermit crab and alligator might be the first to catch your eye. At a closer look, it’s hard to miss the obvious: the Florida creatures have the food hall on their mind just like you. Flying fries fill the negative space as the alligator balances a beverage and the flamingo reaches for a juicy burger.
This lighthearted mural will definitely put a smile on your face before you grab a bite at Treats Food Hall.
Vivid and inspiring, Aventura Mall’s embellished stairwell has a remarkable story behind it. The design was created by five college students at New World School of the Arts. Under the direction of renowned ceramicists Carlos Alves and JC Carroll, the student artists worked as a team to create a mosaic that evokes the tropical climate and welcoming South Florida lifestyle.
The vivid tiles form a towering pink flamingo and Miami’s lush greenery. Look closely, and you’ll see sand dollars from the shore and other hidden treasures.
Located on the lower level, the Hello Sunshine stairwell is a sight to behold. After taking in the view and spotting hints of South Florida throughout the tile, whip out your phone for an Instagram-worthy pose.
Aventura Mall is brimming with creativity at every corner. Plan your visit to discover more than 20 works from renowned artists around the globe – and don’t forget to tag @AventuraMall and #AventuraMall in your art tour pictures!
For more information on the Arts Aventura Mall collection, visit AventuraMall.com/Arts or call 305-935-1110.