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Who We Are

MISSION STATEMENT

We present contemporary art to excite, challenge and educate.

ABOUT THE BASS

The Bass is Miami Beach’s contemporary art museum. Focusing on exhibitions of international contemporary art, The Bass presents mid-career and established artists reflecting the spirit and international character of Miami Beach. The Bass seeks to expand the interpretation of contemporary art by incorporating disciplines of contemporary culture, such as design, fashion and architecture, into the exhibition program.

Recognized for organizing the first solo museum exhibitions in the United States of international artists such as Erwin Wurm, The Bass also presents major exhibitions by influential artists such as El Anatsui, Isaac Julien, Eve Sussman, and Piotr Uklański. The exhibition program encompasses a wide range of media and artistic points of view that bring new thought to the diverse cultural context of Miami Beach.

Central to the museum’s mission, The Bass maintains a vigorous education program for lifelong learning and visitors of all ages. The Bass IDEAS education initiative uses art as a catalyst for creativity and positive growth, especially in the area of early childhood education. The active outreach program, Creativity in the Community, takes The Bass IDEAS off-site by engaging families and their children in Miami-Dade County neighborhoods with the most challenged access to art. In Spring 2017, the museum’s Creativity Center opens as the largest art museum education facility in Miami-Dade.

The Bass continues to incorporate its permanent collection. A new gallery will be dedicated to displays of the museum’s permanent collection, featuring a series of rotating artist projects that present works in dialogue with the collection.

HISTORY

The Bass Museum of Art was founded in 1964 through the donation of a private collection by John and Johanna Bass to the City of Miami Beach. The museum opened in what was formerly the Miami Beach Public Library and Art Center, a 1930s Art Deco building designed by Russell Pancoast, grandson of Miami Beach pioneer John Collins. The building itself already had a rich history on Miami Beach as the first public exhibition space for art in South Florida, and was placed on the National Register in 1978.

In 2001, the original museum building was renovated, and a new wing, designed by renowned architect Arata Isozaki, was added to house galleries, offices and a museum shop. The new galleries gave the museum a total of 16,000 square feet of exhibition space, essential for the presentation of temporary exhibitions and continued growth.

In 2009, The Bass experienced another wave of institutional growth as it consolidated its governance in a 501c3 non-profit corporation, hired a new director and developed a new board. The museum re-focused its mission and programming to reflect the new development of Miami Beach as an art destination, catering to the evolving and diverse nature of Miami Beach residents and tourists.

In Spring 2017, The Bass concludes its long-awaited transformation and reopens to the public. Again working with architect Arata Isozaki with consultation from David Gauld, the renovation expands the internal structure to create an almost 50 percent increase in programmable space, including three new galleries, a museum store and cafe, and a designated education facility to better serve expanded programs and increased attendance.

THE TRANSFORMATION

From its inception in 2013, The Bass has embarked on a $12 million project to transform the museum’s visitor experience. From an expanded and more dynamic physical space to a new visual identity, the new Bass unveils a building for larger exhibitions, engaging education activities and a robust collection program this Spring.

THE BUILDING
The renovation expands the internal structure of the museum without altering the existing footprint, in order to create an almost 50 percent increase in programmable space, including three new galleries, a museum store and cafe, and a designated education facility to better serve expanded programs and increased attendance.

Exhibition Spaces – 12,600 sq. feet

The new Bass features four new galleries, for a total of six, to host temporary exhibitions and permanent collection display. Two new galleries will be added and one will be renovated on the first floor for a total of four exhibition spaces on the main level. A second gallery will be added to the upper level along with a sizable lobby adjoining the two upstairs galleries, proving three exhibitions spaces on the second floor.  One of the galleries on the main floor will be dedicated to displays of the museum’s permanent collection, featuring a series of rotating artist projects that present works in dialogue with the collection. In total, these new configurations create an additional 3,900 sq. feet from an existing 8,700 sq. feet.

Education Spaces – 4,700 sq. feet

The new configuration of the museum creates a designated space for education programming. The Creativity Center opens in Spring 2017, and features three classrooms, offices, a reception lobby and a terrace, creating a full-service education wing that provides unprecedented capabilities for the museum’s education initiatives and curriculum. In total, this new configuration creates an additional 3,700 sq. feet from an existing 1,000 sq. feet.

Public Spaces – 6,000 sq. feet

In addition to new configurations for the courtyard (opening Spring 2017), restrooms, stairways and elevators, The Bass features new spaces for the café and museum store. The museum entrances are also reconfigured, to again use the historic entrance off of Collins Park, originally designed by Russell Pancoast in the 1930s. In total, these new configurations create an additional 2,600 sq. feet from an existing 3,400 sq. feet.

THE ACQUISITION INITIATIVE
In September 2016, The Bass launched a ten-year initiative to add international contemporary art to its permanent collection with inaugural acquisitions by artists Ugo Rondinone and Sylvie Fleury. The museum will annually acquire a major work of contemporary art that will be presented each fall.

THE VISUAL IDENTITY
The Bass worked in collaboration with design studio Project Projects to reinvigorate the museum’s visual identity, encompassing a new logo, name, and branding. By appropriating a moniker long used by locals, the “Bass Museum of Art” now becomes “The Bass,” and the new logo reflects the name change. In addition, The Bass launches a new website, www.thebass.org. Project Projects is also responsible for refreshed and on-brand way-finding markers throughout the new museum.

THE FUNDING
The Bass recognizes the generous public support and private donations that continue to fund and make the transformation possible, including a $7.5 million grant from The City of Miami Beach, a $1 million gift from the Lindemann family, a $1 million gift from the Lieberman family, a $1 million gift from the Cejas family, an Anonymous gift of an undisclosed amount, two grants from The State of Florida totaling over $700,000, and a total of $500,000 in other donations.

THE PROJECT TEAM
The Bass also recognizes the dynamic team of architects and designers who have helped execute the transformation:

Architecture Arata Isozaki & Associates, Tokyo and David Gauld Architect, New York

Interior Design Jonathan Caplan Architect, Project-Space, New York

Visual Identity and Design Prem Krishnamurthy of Project Projects, New York

THE ARCHITECTS
The Bass has reengaged Arata Isozaki of Tokyo as the lead design consultant for the project. Isozaki was the architect of the first museum expansion in 2001 that added a new addition of 16,000 square feet to the original historic structure. Other major projects by Arata Isozaki include the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Olympic Stadium in Barcelona, the Team Disney Building in Orlando, The Guggenheim SoHo, the Tokyo University of Art and Design, the Centural-Art & Museum Complex in Kyiv, Ukraine and the Qatar National Convention Centre in Doha, Qatar.

David Gauld, who was an integral part of Isozaki’s design team for the 2001 museum expansion, is the principal architect of the current transformation. Gauld has collaborated with Isozaki on several notable projects, including the Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, the Brooklyn Museum of Art Auditorium and the Center of Science and Industry in Columbus, Ohio.

FAQ

When does the museum open?

We open to the public in Spring 2017.

Who were John and Johanna Bass?

John Bass (1891-1978) and Johanna Redlich (m. Feb. 21, 1921) were Jewish-immigrants from Vienna, Austria who resided in Miami Beach. As President of the Fajardo Sugar Company of Puerto Rico, John Bass was also an amateur journalist, artist (namely painting and etching) and composer of published music. Mr. Bass collected both fine art and cultural artifacts, including a sizeable manuscript collection that now lives in the Carnegie Hall Archives. In 1963, the couple bequeathed a collection of more than 500 works, including Old Master paintings, textiles and sculptures to the City of Miami Beach, under the agreement that a Bass Museum of Art would remain open to the public in perpetuity. John Bass directed the museum from its founding in 1964 until his death in 1978.

What kind of art will I find at The Bass?

The Bass presents temporary exhibitions of international contemporary art. In addition, a selection of works from the original Bass collection can be seen in the newly dedicated permanent collection gallery, alongside a rotating series of artist projects in dialogue with the collection.

How often do your exhibitions change?

There is no standard length for every exhibition, however, most galleries change every 4-6 months. We have also staggered our exhibition schedule, so new exhibitions may open every 1-3 months. Be sure to take a look at our upcoming exhibitions here.

Do you accept artwork donations?

Unfortunately we are not able to accept unsolicited donations at this time.

I am doing research and would like to know more information about artwork in your collection, where can I obtain this information?

Our registrar is happy to help with requests for research. You may contact our registrar at collections@thebass.org.

How do I apply for a position at The Bass?

We always have many different volunteer and internship opportunities available year round. We may also have full-time salaried positions depending on availability and needs. Please follow the application instructions per each listing and email the required materials to the listed contact. View all jobs & opportunities here.

Can I rent space in the museum for a private event?

Yes, please contact our facility rentals department at rentals@thebass.org for more information.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

  • PRESIDENT

    George Lindemann

  • PARLIAMENTARIAN

    Lida Rodriguez-Taseff

  • TREASURER

    Alan Randolph

  • MEMBERS
  • Olga Blavatnik

  • Criselda Breene

  • Clara Bullrich

  • Hugh Bush

  • Trudy Cejas

  • Michael Comras

  • Ramiro E. Del Amo

  • Brian Ehrlich

  • Gaby Garza

  • Solomon Genet

  • Christina Getty

  • Sarah Harrelson

  • Lisa Heiden-Koffler

  • Monica Kalpakian

  • Naeem Khan

  • Diane Lieberman

  • Alice S. Matlick

  • Jimmy Morales

  • Thomas C. Murphy

  • Laura Paresky Gould

  • Soledad Picón

  • Tui Pranich

  • Alisa Romano

  • Tatyana Silva

  • Christine J. Taplin

  • Richard Toledo

  • Cathy Vedovi

CONTACT


  • ADMINISTRATION

  • Silvia Karman Cubiñá
    Executive Director & Chief Curator

  • Jean Ortega
    Deputy Director

  • Annelisë Abrams
    Assistant to the Director


  • OPERATIONS

  • T.J. Black
    Operations Manager

  • Gabrielle Peters
    Senior Guest Services Associate

  • William Casado de Leon
    Building Supervisor


  • DEVELOPMENT

  • Megan RIley
    Director of External Affairs

  • Sara Ryan
    Development Manager – Individual Giving

  • Daphna Starr
    Development Assistant – Membership



  • EXHIBITIONS

  • Leilani Lynch
    Assistant Curator

  • Nathaniel Hitchcock
    Curatorial Assistant

  • Sherry Zambrano
    Registrar of Collections & Exhibitions

  • Jan Galliardt
    Chief Preparator & Exhibition Technician


  • EDUCATION

  • Kylee Crook
    Director of Education

  • Lisa Quinn
    Education Program Manager

  • Mariana Corbalan
    Education Outreach Manager


  • COMMUNICATIONS

  • Alma Miller
    Interim Director of Communications

  • Julia Rudo
    PR & Marketing Manager

  • Jimena Montemayor
    Graphic Designer