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May 22, 2019 @ 8:00 pm
Don & Mera Rubell
Renowned art collectors Mera and Donald Rubell discuss their Purvis Young exhibition and catalog with the director of their foundation, Juan Valadez, the artist Cesar Trasobares and former art librarian Barbara Young.
Purvis Young is a large-scale exhibition, featuring over 100 paintings from this Miami-born artist who spent the entirety of his life (1943-2010) observing and documenting the lives, deaths, struggles and dreams of the people around him. Numerous universal themes within Young’s paintings are highlighted and presented in depth. This marks the foundation’s largest solo exhibition to date. All of the paintings are from the Rubell Family Collection’s permanent collection.
A comprehensive, 364 page, hardcover catalog with 254 color plates accompanies the exhibition and includes an interview with Young by Hans Ulrich Obrist, recorded in 2005, and writings by Rashid Johnson, Gean Moreno, Franklin Sirmans, César Trasobares, and Barbara N. Young.
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About the Rubells:
Mera and Don Rubell are pioneers who discover and champion young artists, undiscovered neighborhoods and new ideas.
Mera and Don first began engaging with artists, galleries, and museums in 1964 while living in New York. They moved to Miami in 1992 and, with their son Jason and daughter Jennifer, began developing hotels and an art foundation and museum to house and publicly exhibit their expanding art collection. Combining their instinct for emerging neighborhoods with aesthetic acuity and hands-on business know-how, they formed Rubell Hotels and have subsequently transformed and enlivened neighborhoods on the East Coast. They helped spearhead the transformation of South Beach in the 1990’s and their art museum, located in a former DEA evidence warehouse, did the same for Miami’s new cultural epicenter, the Wynwood neighborhood. The Rubells were also instrumental in bringing the Art Basel art fair to Miami Beach.
The Rubells’ early interactions with and support of artists has grown into a life defining passion and they are all intimately involved with all aspects of their highly influential, 45,000 sq ft contemporary art museum, the Rubell Family Collection/Contemporary Arts Foundation. This includes creating exhibitions, working directly with artists, engaging with the public, and collaborating with museums worldwide.
Their art collection, one of the world’s largest, is constantly growing and features such well-known artists as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring, Jeff Koons, Yayoi Kusama, Cindy Sherman, Kara Walker and Purvis Young. In addition to displaying internationally established artists, the Rubells actively support and introduce emerging artists working at the forefront of contemporary art.
Each year the Rubells’ foundation presents thematic exhibitions drawn from the collection with accompanying catalogs. These exhibitions often travel to museums around the world. This year exhibitions will be presented at the Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha, the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City.
The foundation also maintains an internship program, an ongoing lecture series and an extensive artwork loan program to facilitate exhibitions at museums around the world. The Rubells’ ongoing partnership with Miami-Dade County Public Schools enables thousands of schoolchildren to visit and engage with the foundation every year. In addition, the foundation has a public research library containing over 40,000 volumes and a comprehensive contemporary art bookstore.