Contemporary artist Harif Guzman brings The Last Mile to Miami Art Week
Made from steel, cement and cinder blocks, the walls materials demonstrate the strength and power in this first obstacle to obtaining the dream.
MIAMI, FLA.- Renowned New York City contemporary artist Harif Guzman is presenting his new public art installation, entitled The Last Mile, in Miamis Little Haiti neighborhood during Miami Art Week.
A portrayal of the American Dream, The Last Mile is a 9-foot tall and 15-foot wide structure representative of the wall between the USA and Mexico. Guzman invites viewers to experience, at an interactive scale, what thousands of immigrants face daily in their quest for a hopeful future and a better life.
Made from steel, cement and cinder blocks, the walls materials demonstrate the strength and power in this first obstacle to obtaining the dream. The installation also features an 18-foot wooden sculpture that is representative of the immigrant worker coming across with honest intention. The figure is made from different sizes and types of reclaimed wood, symbolizing the numerous races and nations immigrating to this country. A tunnel is also integrated into the structure, allowing viewers to interact with the piece and experience what it is like to cross this barrier.
The Last Mile is a representation of the human need to overcome obstacles, grasp opportunities, and provide security for their families, said Harif Guzman. There is no political agenda. This wall does not discriminate. Regardless of gender, race or sexual orientation, everyone must face and cross this barrier to achieve success, acquire education and fully empower themselves.
The Last Mile is Guzmans first major public art installation. It is on display Thursday, November 28 through Sunday, December 8 at 5501 NE 2nd Ave. in Miamis Little Haiti neighborhood.
Venezuela-born artist, Harif Guzman came to New York City in 1980. As a child, Guzman spent his early years in the company of his mother and sister but was strongly influenced by his father, who was a printer. Growing up, Guzman worked in his father's print shop and gained an appreciation for color esthetics. His subsequent trajectory, from shop worker to street-smart skate punk to internationally-respected contemporary artist, is based on his alchemical ability to transform humble cast-offs into fine art in his studio.
Guzman first gained recognition for his work as a street artist in New York City. Often executed in collage form, his vibrant, provocative work explores the darker aspects of the human condition. Transformative in many ways, the materials Guzman employs in his creative process are not just the physical objects he works with, but also secondhand imagery and ideas that characterize contemporary urban existence.
Guzmans work was featured at The Whitney Museum Annual Art Party and at Zona Maco in Mexico City in a solo show, and his work with be presented in a solo retrospect called The American Dream at the MoMA Moscow in 2020. Guzman has collaborated with companies such as Ralph Lauren, Volcom and Burtons. His work has also been featured in Italian Vogue, Sugar Skateboard Magazine, Thrasher, Sport and Street, Flaunt Magazine and Oyster Magazine.