The Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami set its groundbreaking date for Nov. 16, putting the project behind its previously estimated completion, which coincided with Art Basel 2016.
The 37,000-square-foot, three-story building, including a 15,000-square-foot sculpture garden, will sit on 41st street in the Design District on land donated by Miami Design District Associates.
The museum is the first U.S. project designed by Madrid architecture firm Aranguren & Gallegos Arquitectos, in collaboration with local firm Wolfberg Alvarez & Partners. Aranguren & Gallegos previously has designed museums in Cordoba and Madrid.
The budget and official completion date for the privately funded museum aren’t yet finalized, said Irma Braman. She and husband Norman Braman, a civic activist and auto dealer, are spearheading the project and providing much of the funding, with board members that she called “ultra ultra generous.”
“We will release the numbers a little further down because we’re so proud of them,” Braman said.
When the museum opens in early-to-mid 2017, visitors will see works of art by Tracey Emin, John Baldessari and Ana Mendieta that previously were at North Miami’s Museum of Contemporary Art before ICA’s founders split from that institution. Other works will come from Braman’s highly regarded personal collection of modern masters. The focus is on modern and groundbreaking art, and the aesthetic of the museum will reflect its mission.
Braman said the Design District is an appropriate home for the museum because of the variety of architectural styles there.
“Everything does not look the same; everything is not in a line,” she said. “We’re going to fit right in.”
The hope is that the new museum, 50 feet east of the existing de la Cruz Collection of Contemporary Art, will add to the neighborhood’s diverse offerings, Braman said, as well as to Miami’s greater cultural scene.
“It’s important for everyone, for all the other museums,” she said. Many of those relocating to Miami or purchasing vacation homes here come from culture-rich locations and expect the same here. “They’re not coming here to sit on the beach, they’re coming here to build a life.”
ICA Miami’s creation was announced a year ago, following a split in the former board of the Museum of Contemporary Art from its home in North Miami. Recently ICA named Ellen Salpeter, former deputy director of external affairs for the Jewish Museum in New York, as its new director. Alex Gartenfeld remains deputy director and chief curator.
The museum currently operates out of the Moore Building in Miami’s Design District, at 4040 NE Second Ave.
“I feel like the future is here,” Braman said. “Once you get that shovel in the ground I feel like we’re on our way.”