Art is a subjective medium, and there are many ways to express it. Some museums cater to the classically accepted contemporary art, while others have a more hands on approach. However, all of these museums offer a slice of South Florida life and a glimpse of the outside world’s customs and cultures. These five museums are not only important, they are necessary for anyone visiting or local to South Florida. Not only are you guaranteed to be entertained, you will also be educated without even realizing it.
Housed in an edifice that resembles a temple, rather than a museum, the Bass Museum of Art is South Florida’s most complete collection of contemporary art. The permanent installation includes paintings, sculptures, textiles and tapestries from the Renaissance, the 19th and 20th century, North American, Latin American and Caribbean art. At the Lindemann Family Creative Center, children will get an interactive art experience through tours, workshops and the Bass Museum’s cognitive education program, [email protected] There are also several visiting installments by artists like Peter Marino, Vik Muniz and more that keep visitors coming back for more. So take a self guided tour today or a guided tour Wednesday through Friday and immerse yourself in a world of art and culture.
There is only one word to describe the Vizcaya Museum & Gardens: breathtaking. It is the former winter home of industrialist and landmark South Florida socialite, James Deering. The Italian Renaissance and Mediterranean Revival inspired estate includes a mansion-like villa that houses priceless works of art and a vast European garden with natural sculptures that has to be seen to be believed. The home is the vision of artist and designer Paul Chalfin and has been open to the public since 1923, two years prior to Deering’s death. This site is an absolute must for any visitor, local, lover of landscapes and architectural buff.
The Museum of Discovery & Science is a fun museum with an emphasis on interactive. There are eco-exhibits, aquatic installations and space exploration displays. The main attraction is the 300-seat AutoNation IMAX Theater. It features a 5-story screen, a 32,000 watt sound system and the latest educational and box office releases. However, soon the IMAX will take a backseat to the museum’s newest addition, the Simnoa 7D Max multi-sensory theater where guest will be able to fly through space and sky via a motion simulator and a projection screen. See website for tickets and attraction availability
The Miami Children’s Museum is kid-centric, interactive, educational playground. It opened the doors to its new facility on Watson Island in 2003 and through its 14 permanent exhibits, the museum helps children discover the world around them from the land and sea to the grocery store. At each exhibit there are hands on activities that allow you children to learn by doing and outside there is a playground for outside entertainment. There are also new exhibits and events on display monthly and geared towards holidays and education. See website calendar to see what is on the docket for your family this month.
Coral Castle is more of an anomaly or a Ripley’s Believe It or Not attraction. It’s a garden of 1100 coral rock statues all carved by Edward Leedskalnin, a Latvian immigrant and magnetism buff. The mystery surrounding the castle is first, how one man could single-handedly sculpt 1100 pieces and more importantly, how did he move the dense pieces by himself. Much like the construction of the pyramids, the answer still eludes us today and thus attracts thousands of tourists every year.
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