LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING, a collaborative project between MCAD and EXILE Books


Date: 09/03/2015 - 10/17/2015

Time: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Location: Miami Center for Architecture and Design


The Miami Center for Architecture & Design (MCAD) is proud to announce LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING, a collaborative project between MCAD and EXILE Books, a Miami-based, pop-up artist’s book store. LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING is a groundbreaking program that seeks to bridge the understanding between downtown Miami architecture, independent publishing, and accessibility, specifically addressing visual impairments. Opening September 3, 2015, the exhibition coincides with the 25th anniversary of Americans with Disabilities Act.

LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING will transform ten Downtown Miami buildings into a living, multimedia tableau via four main components:

The MCAD gallery will feature tactile relief works of selected downtown buildings with accompanying wall texts provided in braille.

The public, front steps of the Miami Center for Architecture and Design (MCAD) will house the project’s central component: an outdoor audio piece that will share engaging stories about the Old U.S. Post Office and Courthouse (MCAD’s home) as well as surrounding downtown buildings. The audio installation will be accompanied by a large, vinyl, floor applique inviting passersby to “LISTEN” to the building.

To further enhance the exhibit, students from FIU’s College of Architecture + the Arts (CARTA) at Miami Beach Urban Studios will create models of selected downtown buildings using a 3-D printing process. These renderings will be displayed in covered boxes obscuring their visual properties so that audiences must feel the building to experience the architecture.

To commemorate the exhibition, EXILE Books will also produce an artist’s book in which the architectural narratives from the outdoor audio piece will be transcribed in braille. There will be no photographs or printed text in the publication, only tactile reliefs of each building, effectively compelling the viewer to experience Miami through new and distinct paradigms.

The exhibition is believed to be the first architectural exhibit designed to address accessibility for persons with visual impairments. MCAD and EXILE Books will co-host a slate of weekly events during the six-week exhibition to engage the public on issues of art, architecture, and accessibility. The exhibition will be on view from September 3, 2015 to October 17, 2015.

The exhibition, mobility tours, and braille artist book are made possible with the support of the Miami Downtown Development Authority. Support for EXILE Books is made possible through the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Printing and consulting for the project generously provided by Miami Lighthouse for the Blind. Tactile illustrations offered by John De Salvo and Judith McBrien as featured in the Norton’s Pocket Guide to Miami Architecture. Programming partners include Miami Lighthouse for the Blind, Ability Explosion, Florida International University’s College for Architecture + the Arts, and IlluminArts. Additional sponsorship provided by Thomas Printworks and SFCA isaw + Subtropics.

Programming Schedule:

Thursday, September 3rd, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Tuesday, September 8th, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Celebrating 85 Years Through Tactile Art, Music, and Other Programs
by Miami Lighthouse for the Blind

Saturday, September 12th, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Orientation & Mobility Tours for Downtown Art Days
by Miami Lighthouse for the Blind

Thursday, September 24th, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
CARTA In Resonance: MBUS, Models, and Music by FLEA

Thursday, October 1st, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Songs of the City, Songs in the Dark
by IlluminArts

Saturday, October 3rd, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Building Voice: A Talk by Architect Christopher Downey

Tuesday, October 6th, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Accessibility Talk: Advocacy & Community Awareness
R. David New in conversation with curator Sara Darling

Opening Reception Gallery


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