Local hero: Mana Wynwood displays private collections at Art Basel

An exhibition space featuring various galleries.
Mana Wynwood's vast Miami exhibition space plays host to three gallery-standard private collections for this year's Art Basel. Pictured: 'A Sense of Place: Selections from the Jorge M Pérez Collection' (installation shot), co-curated by Patricia Hanna and Anelys Alvarez-Muños
(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Wynwood is now firmly established as Miami’s gallery district, and Mana Contemporary is its anchor tenant. Founded by moving and storage mogul Moishe Mana in New Jersey in 2011, Mana Contemporary is establishing itself as one of the most ambitious, if least heralded and hard to define, private art institutions in the US.

Its New Jersey base has a million sq ft – spread over 35 acres – of profit and non-profit space and includes artists’ studios; exhibition space, including the 50,000 sq ft, Richard Meier-designed Mana Glass Gallery; space for serious collectors to display and store their art; artist services, including a foundry; as well as the Richard Meier Model Museum and the International Center of Photography. And Mana is planning to double that and add a theatre and restaurants. It has a smaller offshoot in Chicago, opened in 2013.

The huge event and exhibition venue at Mana Wynwood, meanwhile, covers a measly six acres, though Mana has bought up eight blocks in the area – covering 30 acres – and is planning to add more exhibition space and affordable artist studios.

There was a large and steady stream of Uber cabs into Wynwood from South Beach during Art Basel Miami and many were here to see Mana’s three-part contribution to the week’s events. It has pulled together selections from three private collections, two focusing on Latin American art and another on Californian art of the last half-century. All are museum quality.

The Argentinean collector Jorge M Pérez has already left his mark on Miami. The Herzog & De Meuron-designed Pérez Art Museum Miami, opened in 2013 and a new home for what had been the Miami Art Museum, includes over 100 works from Pérez’s private collection. (Craig Robbins, another local real estate mogul and creator of the city’s Design District, donated a similar amount.)

The new Mana show, titled 'A Sense of Place', includes more than 50 of Pérez’s more recent acquisitions, all by artists from Latin America, and includes works from Julio Le Parc, Guillermo Kuitca, Oscar Muñoz and Los Carpinteros. 'Everything you are I am Not', a sort of companion show, brings together works collected by Tiroche DeLeon. And while there is some cross over with the Pérez exhibition, the work here has perhaps more of a street-art edge.

Frederick Weisman, meanwhile, began collecting Californian art in the mid-1950s and the family-run foundation continues to add to that collection. 'Made in California', a 100-strong selection from the foundation’s 1000-plus and counting haul, includes works by Ed Ruscha, Larry Bell and Robert Irwin.

An exhibition space with artwork.

The Argentinean collector Jorge M Pérez has already left his mark on Miami. The Herzog & De Meuron-designed Pérez Art Museum Miami, opened in 2013, holds over 100 of his pieces

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

An open exhibition space with artwork on walls and on tables.

This exhibition displays 50 works by exclusively Latin-American artists from Pérez' archives

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

The exhibition space with a large painting on display to the right picturing a grass field and someone standing in it.

Pictured far right: Summer, by Enrique Martínez Celaya, 2007

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

The exhibition space featuring a glass table display to the left, a series of posters on a wall and other artwork.

Pérez was named one of the most influential Hispanic people in the US by TIME magazine, and is considered a visionary for his contributions to South Florida’s cultural and artistic landscape

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Several pieces of art on display including a wall covered in 66 photos and a piece of art on a plinth in the centre.

The enormous six-acre space is just a drop in the ocean when compared to Mana's future plans – eight surrounding blocks have been purchased, comprising 30 acres

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Artwork on display including a 3x3 set of photos with a face on each.

There are additonal plans for more exhibition space and affordable artist studios. Pictured: 'A Sense of Place: Selections from the Jorge M Pérez Collection' (installation view)

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Exhibition space with artwork on display.

The companion show from Tiroche DeLeon's collection, called 'Everything you are I am Not', has more of a street-art edge

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

A green old-style VW van with the doors open and the van filled with bananas.

Pictured: Banana Market/Art Market, by Paulo Nazareth, 2011. Courtesy the Tiroche DeLeon Collection

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Side by side photos. Left: An orange VW car with its door open and a large face above. Right: A blue surf board.

Pictured left: Sem Titulo/Untitled, by Os Gêmeos, 2008–2010. Courtesy the Tiroche DeLeon Collection. Right: Morpholoy, by Andy Moses, 2013

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

A video exhibition space inside the area with a bench and an image of a field on a wall titled Videos 2000- 2009.

Pictured: 'A Sense of Place: Selections from the Jorge M Pérez Collection' (installation view)

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

A yellow/orange gradient coloured sky with a carrot in the bottom left.

Pictured: Please...,  by Ed Ruscha, 1985. Courtesy Frederick R Weisman Art Foundation, Los Angeles

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Two panoramic pieces of art with yellow/orange gradients.

Pictured left: Ancient Dogs Barking – Modern Dogs Barking, by Ed Ruscha, 1980. Right: End, by Ed Ruscha, 1983

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)

Exhibition space with a 12 sides multi-colour pool on the left. ON the right, red white and white vertical lines; Right: red and white circular dots.

Pictured right: Nine No. 2 (Magenta and Gold) by Peter Lotado, 2004. Far right: Adelphia, by Charles Christopher Hill, 2014

(Image credit: E. Lee Smith)


Art Basel Miami is on view until 6 December. For more information, please visit Mana Contemporary's website

Photography: E. Lee Smith


Mana Wynwood
318 NW 23rd Sreet Miami
Florida, FL 33127