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Lawrence Weiner, Shells Used to Build Roads Poured Upon Shells Used to Pay the Way, at the Level of the Sea, 2008. Click above for more images.

The Bass Acquires Works by Sanford Biggers, Mika Rottenberg, Lawrence Weiner, Among Others

The Bass in Miami Beach announced today that it has acquired major contemporary works by Sandford Biggers, Mark Handforth, Karen Rifas, Mika Rottenberg, and Lawrence Weiner. The pieces—which range from Biggers’s Mandala-inspired installation Poteau Mitan, 2002, to Rottenberg’s cluster of air-conditioning units AC Trio, 2015—are the latest works by living artists to enter the museum’s permanent collection.

“Continuing to grow and expand The Bass’s permanent collection is a vital part of our commitment to presenting international contemporary art to our audiences,” director and chief curator Silvia Cubina told artforum.com. “We aim to collect impactful works of art by both midcareer and established artists that concisely encapsulate each artist's practice. These works reflect the material and conceptual diversity of practices that form the artistic landscape of the moment.”

Cubina added that the museum’s recognition of Miami-based artists such as Rifas and Handforth also represents the impact of their work within the local contemporary art landscape. “Their work, along with Lawrence Weiner’s and Sanford Biggers’s poetic and spiritual installations, offer reflections on current issues like the effects of climate change, the pressures and opportunities of living in a globalized society, and the potential escape,” she said.

The acquisitions were made possible by the John and Johanna Bass Acquisition Fund, which was launched in 2016 in order to expand the museum’s international contemporary art holdings. The works by Biggers, Rottenberg, and Weiner are currently being presented in “Call and Response,” alongside other pieces from the museum’s collection that are being displayed long-term. Marthine Tayou’s work Welcome Wall, 2015, which was commissioned for the Bass’s reopening in October 2017, is still on view, and Rifas’s installation Untitled, 2018, is currently featured in the exhibition “Deceptive Constructions,” which will close in October. Handforth’s light installation Silver Branch, 2016, will be installed at a future date.

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