Press Release

ICA Miami and the Miami Design District Unveil First U.S. Public Project by Renowned Architect Yona Friedman

Miami, FL
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Space-Chain Phantasy-Miami 2019 opens to the public on March 2, 2019 in the Miami Design District Paradise Plaza

The Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, in collaboration with the Miami Design District, will present a newly-commissioned project by Yona Friedman, a Hungarian-born French architect, urban planner, and designer. Drawing from a lifetime of developing architectural concepts that seek to empower users and generate democratic cities, Friedman will develop a new prototype, Space-Chain Phantasy-Miami 2019, inspired by Miami and reflecting his perspective that architecture should be flexible, mobile, and adjust to the needs of its inhabitants. On view in the Miami Design District Paradise Plaza beginning March 2, 2019, "Yona Friedman: Space-Chain Phantasy-Miami 2019" marks the architect’s first public project in the United States.

“Friedman is recognized as one the most important architectural thinkers of the postwar period,” states Gean Moreno, Curator of Programs at ICA Miami and along with Alexandra Cunningham Cameron is a co-curator of Friedman’s project. “He has developed a number of innovative theories and fostered a highly conceptual practice that ventures into sociology, urban planning, filmmaking, mathematics, economics, and information science. In his thinking Friedman emphasizes the freedom and autonomy of the user or inhabitant, reacts to technological advancements, and calls for a responsible relationship with the environment.”

"We are honored to have Yona’s work on display in the Miami Design District and thrilled that he chose us for the location of his first project in the U.S,” said Craig Robins, CEO of Dacra Development and developer of the Miami Design District. “The public sculpture initiative with ICA Miami has brought some extraordinary talent to Paradise Plaza and Yona’s architectural design is a welcomed addition to the neighborhood.”

Over the last two decades, Yona Friedman (b. 1923, Budapest) has found a receptive audience in the art world, and he has developed projects for international exhibitions and institutions, including documenta, Kassel, Germany; Serpentine Gallery, London; and the Venice Biennale, among many others. His work can be found in the collections of the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Centre national des arts plastiques, Paris; Centre national édition art image, Chatou, France; FRAC Centre, Fonds régional d’art contemporain, Orléans, France; Institut d’art contemporain, Lyon; and Nouveau Musée National de Monaco. He currently resides in Paris.

This public sculpture continues a collaborative public sculpture initiative between ICA Miami and the Miami Design District, and is curated by Alexandra Cunningham Cameron and Gean Moreno, Curator of Programs at ICA Miami. Launched in 2017, the inaugural program included two outdoor concrete block structures by conceptual artist Sol LeWitt, Tower (Frankfurt), (1990) and Tower (Lodz), (1993), as well as a commissioned 33-foot site-specific sculpture by ICA Miami from renowned German Pop artist Thomas Bayrle entitled Wire Madonna (2016).

"Yona Friedman: Space-Chain Phantasy-Miami 2019" will be accompanied by a 100-page publication with newly-commissioned scholarly essays and graphic projects, including Teddy Cruz, Fonna Forman, and Jimenez Lai, among others.

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Prototype sculpture of Space-chain Phantasy-Miami 2019 by architect Yona Friedman for the Miami Design District. Courtesy the artist.

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