Thursday, November 27, 2008

Pass Ocean Dr. Collect a Tan

Getting a tan is easy. Finding a place to park in South Beach is not and it's gonna cost. But when you are on Lincoln Road prepare for the season's Kaiju Invasion and check out the Pink Mantango at the Art Center South Florida gallery exhibition during ABMB .

Art Deco Sells

Half the fun in watching the famous Argentine artist Rosario Marquardt unveil her collectible poster for Miami Beach, was listening to mayor Matti Bower host the event with an amusing scripted delivery. The gathered were treated to Bower at her best when she light-heartedly said "parking isn't free on miami beach" and every one chucked. i remember when it was ... and thought, that's not funny.

But the bagels are Free..
All interested parties were in attendance on Ocean Drive and 10 street for the early morning scheduled Miami Beach loves ArtBasel Kick-Off with complimentary muffins and croissants.

Milton-Dradley on Vacation.
They also unveiled a SOBE Monopoly board-game. The nice lady that promotes it for the city did not know that the life-guard stand featured prominently on the weird collage game board was designed by kenny scharf in 1995.

Miami Beach Monopoly Game - 30 bucks!@#$%


Have a Nice Turkey Day

When the pilgrims set sail on the Mayflower to the new world, the first thing they graced was the Plymouth Rock seen here today in all it's national treasure splendor.

But why is New England synonymous with Thanksgiving... why not St. Augustine Florida? There is a wellspring of information historians leave out of the textbooks.

It is no secret that we come from the land of plenty. Our strategic national stockpiles of food could solve the worlds hunger crisis... for about a week, and then what?

Let's not forget those who are less fortunate, those who Mother Teresa championed.
We don't have to go to India to find those in need.

A warm cranberry wish for each and everyone out there.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Bordello Bodega

The Bordello Bodega

Celebrating 25 years in the Design District, Miami artist Oliver Sanchez will open his studio featuring the Bordello Bodega during the Design Miami and ArtBaselMiamiBeach events.

The BORDELLO BODEGA is a neighborhood convenience store with a hospitality club theme laced with a unique Latin Manhattan flavor. A ridiculous manifestation that attempts to convey the notion that what propels human endeavor is an unchanging burning desire for fundamental earthly pleasures.

Since the dawn of human history, the urge to venture beyond the familiar has lead to new frontiers and expanded our common understanding of the world we inhabit. Whether nomadic wanderers or sea-faring conquerors; the sights of those dauntless few that heeded the call were set on discovering new places and people to interact with. As illusive and isolated points of destination were uncovered, tall tales and trade routes soon connected them intensifying the allure of untold exotic riches. In time, port-towns and out-posts became magnets for the intrepid. The spoils for the inquisitive voyagers were invariably the same then as they are today; more particularly GIRLS, GROG and GAIETY.

We humans are not made for work, but we will work very hard for that immeasurable reward at the end of the rainbow. The power process is a first-hand experience; the art of the hunt is more fulfilling than a job so if you want a rainbow, you have to put up with the rain. The Bordello Bodega is a glimpse into modern tropical Bohemia. It is another spark of the age-old beacon of passions.

The proceeds from the Bordello Bodega will be donated to the neighborhood Design and Architecture Senior High School.


Monday, November 17, 2008


Jose Bedia - 2 mile island 2007

Why is FLP building two new giant nuclear reactors at Turkey Point when there is a better micro-solution available. It appears that we now have no need to worry about our future energy needs. Leave it to the Japanese to lead the nuclear power industry into the next century.
The plants will be self-contained, and require no human intervention, essentially nuclear batteries.

".......Nuclear power plants smaller than a garden shed and able to power 20,000 homes will be on sale within five years, say scientists at Los Alamos, the US government laboratory which developed the first atomic bomb.

The miniature reactors will be factory-sealed, contain no weapons-grade material, have no moving parts and will be nearly impossible to steal because they will be encased in concrete and buried underground...."

Bet you can't have just one.

N.I.M.B.Y. not in my backyard- a micro nuke?

made 3 of these for Martin Oppel "explosion 2007"


Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Fundamentals of the Economy are Wrong

The Highway traffic was all backed up so I decided to take a familiar local route to document the architecture along 27th Avenue in NW Miami.

Catch 27 - comply with the Sign Ordinance?
The facade of this building improved emotionally with a simple mural.

On the way to the other side. A short ride from the Design District. A stark reminder of the bleak economic forecast.

Habitat for Humility.
Entire housing projects lay bare, like an elephant graveyard of broken homes.

Romance with Erosion. Best Bus Stop design Ever. Graded A for style F for shelter.
Empty everything dots the cityscape but i will not show you the many pictures of abandoned buildings, closed business or automotive shops.

Tucker's Revenge 130 st. across from MDCC
There is hope that the fundamentals of the economy are strong. There is ample example of the patience and perseverance on the part of locals to make lemonade from lemons.

Have faith in the power of design to convert. This church stood out not only because it's so disney-esque but because it is surrounded by decrepit trailer-parks and factories.

Old fashioned gas station gone purple. Business is slow.

A man's maison is his temple. Basically a box with an IN door, an OUT door and a nice shiny doo-hickey.

Super-structure Rising and Rumbling.
This is the underside of the Metro that takes passengers somewhere but goes nowhere.
It is a heavy thing that dominates the street level environment. Makes for some good shade from the sweltering sun.

What tour along North West 27th Avenue would be complete without a stop at the legendary Douglas Gardens Thrift Shop, a picker's paradise.

More purple buildings. Uniforms and beauty products, whatever sells well.

Best Bike Shop in Miami. Victors on 27th Ave. and 34 St.
Tell them Swampthing sent you.


Thursday, November 13, 2008


Cluster-Flux at the introspection of People and Machine.

Our expressways, motorists, cranes and rubber-neckers co-exist in an ever-flowing stream of traffic in the urban landscape of concrete and palmtrees. It is the necessary dance that makes us mobile in a society that demands conformity and order. But the work-order of the day is perpetual road-improvement hazard plagued with congestion and delays that can be explained in two words; TransitMiami.

Julia Tuttle westbound 7:00 am. Slow down, save gas.

Practically every morning, noon and night folks of all persuasions share the egalitarian roads with the notion that traffic invariably yucks. How often do we lumber to a halt along the Teflon highways with silent indignation. How would you like a lane all to yourself?

Southbound morning I-95. The CarDragon from DWNTWN to the GoldenGlades.

Now "to get from here to there" will be a breeze once the "lexus lanes" are completed and open for business. But you will need a "Some-Pass" and HOV's will need to register. It's going to cost and we wont know how much. Peoples concern is that they can't wait for the progress to end.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sweet n Sour

UPDATE: never mind, it's another happy ending compliments of the SFWMD.

Burn Baby Burn. Raping the Muck for her sweet stuff.

Swampthing, maybe the first environmentalist.

What's up with the Big Sugar Deal and our Governor Crist? Sounds like a "bait and switch" perpetrated on Florida Taxpayers at the expense of the Everglades.

Is this Charlie just being sour grapes; getting even for being passed over for VP by what's-her-name? He sure works hard for his pals at the decimated GOP.

Front Page today New York Times:

MIAMI — United States Sugar Corporation has agreed to sell 181,000 acres of farmland to the State of Florida for $1.34 billion in a slimmed-down deal intended to rescue the Everglades while letting the company stay in business.

The price is $410 million less than Gov. Charlie Crist offered for the entire company in June. It is also a simpler transaction involving only real estate — U.S. Sugar would retain its mill, citrus processing facilities and other assets — leaving open the possibility of preserving the company’s 1,700 jobs.

“This is a unique opportunity,” said Robert Coker, a senior vice president with U.S. Sugar.

Look for serious analysis at Eye on Miami.

We pay for the land and pay again at publix.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Peace Mom

A quote from the mother of W... the worst president in U.S. history.LinkBut why should we hear about body bags, and deaths, and how many, what day it's gonna happen, and how many this or what do you suppose? Or, I mean, it's, it's not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that? And watch him suffer."
— Barbara Bush on "Good Morning America," March 18, 2003

A photo of a great American Hero who lost her son in Iraq.

Cindy Sheehan for Congress.

Future voters meet Cindy at MDCC book signing.

End our illegal occupation in Iraq.


Monday, November 10, 2008

Sweet Basil's BigTop Bonanza

Tents-R-Us. Mid-Town east of I-95 , 8 feet above sea level.

The Art Circus is Coming to the Latin Manhattan.
The art industry is an economic engine, a Rolls Royce diesel power-house.

Notice the myriad of temporary structures being erected on empty lots from downtown to the Design District, from Coral Gables to South Beach. BTW, when is hurricane season over? Who cares, it's time for the eighth annual 'art n shock n awe' !! Come out and take in the Painting, Sculpture, Video, Design, Performance, and a Museum-load of Partying. The anticipation is contagious.

Tis' the Season of the Artzi Fartzy Folk. ArtBaselMiamiBeach is poised to attract the curious senses, a multitude of casual observers and 500 private jet-setting eye-balls. The art world, as with the science community, consists of a diverse melange of fascinating characters immersed in the creative process of elimination and aquisition. That we are not all are predictable makes for a worthwhile junket into the cerebral realm of the visually engaged.

With the years the ABMB, the whole ball of wax, has gained tremendous nuanced momentum but somehow it is diminished with predictability. Like a perennial itch, there is a buzz in the swamp that beacons the bohemian spirit with the eye-candy.

The Swiss Basel captain would never let this happen to their containers.

ABMB is to art fairs what Godzilla is to Kaiju.

As with any good genre, Japanese monster movies are distinct and cliche yet varied, distracting, amusing and unnerving enough to relax us then engage the minds of the spectators. Art fairs are also distracting, amusing and unnerving. And like any good story, it has a beginning, middle and end.

Arguably all the other fairs annually world-wide are relevant and substantial in an old-world kinda way but Basil in Miami is down-right Tropi-Radioactive.

Re-Designed District.
The RNC venue was smaller than this crystal draped BigTop behemoth.
This will be the epicenter for Designistas and all things designy with wall to wall Fabuloucity.

The appreciation of finer things has always been with us. The search is an epic journey; even today with frequent-flier miles. It is where we draw delight and lust. The art market trades in something founded on our vices, one result of leisure time after we got beyond survival.
The iconic voyage is unchanged as collectors and curios once again venture to Miami in search of the thing that is most prized, though the gem may prove illusive, the artventurer will depart with stories of far swampier places, people and things.

The highest prized slaves.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Exhale an O'Hallelujah

It's morning in America.
After eight hellish years, the majority of the American People have voted the crazies out of the white house. The republicans lost big-time. To borrow their own words from '04, "We won, you lost, get over it." But somehow that's not enough for those of us who have been screaming bloody murder since 2000..... and have finally been proven wise all along.

A heartfelt debt of genuine gratitude goes out to the hardworking progressive community of internet bloggers, investigating journalists, gov watch-dogs, volunteers, and old hippies. All have contributed immeasurably to my education and subsequent divine madness. I pledge to continue the hard work of digging for truth and reporting on it here.

I would like to also thank all those on the right for their unintended contribution in making our O-victory a certainty. Many a bitter thank you's to: the apologetic FauxNews cheerleaders, conservative talk radio, religious fundy fruitcakes, all manner of racists, bigots, ignoramus ditto-heads, predatory capitalists, and democrats for mccain. Thanks but no thanks to all the folks who were dead wrong about the colossal train-wreck that was the Cheney/Bush juggernaut. The list is too long and the players not worth naming. But lastly, a cold and lonely thank you to Sarah 'Paleface' Palin and Joe 'Septic' Plummer. Now here is where my contempt for our misguided brethren ends.

The voting machines actually worked ( for us ) this time.

It's time to christen the Good Ship Obama/Biden.
It's time to usher in a new era of personal responsibility and restore our place in the world community of nations.

It is time to bring our military home, end the occupation of Iraq.
It's time to praise the Lawd and pass the peace pipe.


Sunday, November 2, 2008

Born on Election Day

Got a very nice letter today in the mail from the American Association of Retired People, the AAA for the silver set. Now, I know that my birthday is fast approaching as I was born on election day. The media obsession with this historic presidential race just heighten my birthday anxiety. Know also that 50 may be a big number for some in terms of years but to get a solicitation from the AARP really brought it home, the delightful fact that the clock always ticks clock-wise.

Birthday Wish List 2008:
1. obama in the whitehouse.
2. obama in the whitehouse.
3. an electric pencil sharpener.

Indulge with me as I attempt to cram half a lifetime in one post.

1938 Pig Roast at one of the family farms; we were actually town folk.
My dearly departed father (boy in center) grew up in Cuba; healthy, prosperous, educated in the usa and perfectly congenial. He fell in love with the girl next door and had three kids. I'm the baby.

1958 Country Club courtship socials.
But the provincial life that was their dreams-come-true was about to be set ablaze by the Castro Revolution; the biggest longest burning bone-head fire. The flagship Caribbean island rejected Uncle Sam and in fifty years time managed to accomplish a monumental blunder; the creation of what can only be called the Museum Island of Failed Ideas or MIFI.

(photo not related, TX football victory bonfire)

1960 Hundreds and thousands of well-to-do cubano families abandoned their island homes and sought political asylum world-wide with the bulk settling in Miami. They were most assuredly running for their lives, but they also were lured by a secret and exciting promise of the American Dream.

1970 Popular Machinations.
A dream that many would realize in time but not without deep compromise and assimilation. Miami of 1960 looked like a swamp-sale boom for developers. I was just a snotty mogli alter-boy, an artist gestating in the tropics.

Canvas Cowboys
These chaps from the U of M typify the artist community in Miami back then.
I can't say when I decided to be an artist but after community college 1979, i flew the swamp, went around the world twice and ended back here in 1992.

2000 Unapologetic Irrevetent
Today the Miami artists community looks more like this.
Puni with Mr. and Mrs. Swampthing rehearsing the Vomitdinkleberry Movement Troup performance at ArtBaselMiamiBeach.

1990 Home is where the Art is.
Miami is a place where one can make a home and a family. With hard work and rot's of ruck you can "ride-off-into-the-sunset". But it is getting increasingly difficult for many to attain happiness aka to own property.

Grappling with Immorality
Being a parent is the single most gratifying responsibility ever. But kids need more than love.
They deserve a world that is at least no worse off than when we inherited it and at best a world that is bound for unimaginable wonder. They need change and hope; Fairness and Faith.

2008 Passions Path.
The spirits we possess need feeding.
Most of the time I just work hard at the studio, stay home and sacrifice.

Fools Stride
A moist n fuzzy happy first anniversary to S W A M P S T Y L E, my thoroughly distracting yet therapeutic personal blog journal techno-hobby. 49 more to go.

Deep Thoughts
The world is an empty stage and we are all oysters. Any one of us can build a pearl, just start with an annoying speck of swampsand.

So, what do I want for my filthiest birthday; on election day.......

you got it, O B A M A in the White House.

Oh yeah, and finally i want a day with my ladies at the Standard spa.