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Miamiami Bill of Rights’ wall

Project of an artistic urban wall to seperate the beach from the street on Ocean drive in Miami Beach


Year :
1992
Location :
Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, Floride

In 1992, Tony Goldman a famous NY and Miami entrepreneur with whom we had created two projects, one in NY, Subway Map Floating on a NY sidewalk (1985) and in Miami the Park Central Hotel (1988), asked us to imagine a Human Rights project for the Miami Art Deco District Ocean Drive City Park. He had great visions about the City.  We had just finished building the Concorde station in Paris and started the Brussels project. So was born the Miami Bill of Rights’ Wall.

The project was to be located from 5th to 15th street along Ocean Drive. There was an existing low wall dividing the public park from the beach, and serving as a protection against the weather’s invasions on the fragile greenery. The wall was also the only non decorated wall in the highly colored district along Ocean Drive. Even though the wall framed the horizon, it was ugly.

Françoise Schein had just finished building the Paris Concorde station and invited by her friend Tony Goldman, they wanted to create a similar project in the region. Her proposed design was to embed the Bill of Rights on the wall separating the ocean from the earth.

Her concept-design for the wall used the map of Miami transformed into a playful, extraordinary long public sculpture with lights illuminating the city shape at night and producing a strange but recognizable zig-zag line. Like a river, the wall, and many meanders and in some of them there would be children’s playgrounds created by Federica Matta.

Aesthetically the wall had 3 layers of colored texts of the Bill of Rights in English, Spanish and french. Like in Concorde station, there was one letter on each 5×5 inches tiles, no space between the words, and no punctuation. The concept of the project was to slightly transform the language’s grammar to induce people’s curiosity and desire to read.

The Bill of Rights was to be seen and read on the wall, below the city’s skyline, the most popular ready-made diagram that local people know. The Miami map is a spectacular one with its geometrical islands and peninsulas. Between the coastlines and the Bill of Rights, Miami gained a new landmark.

The project was not built because of disagreements between the hotel owners in the neighborhoods.

AWARDS

Miami Design Preservation League award 
Designers of Excellence

 

PARTNERS AND SUPPORT

Ingrid Hustvedt, architect
Tony Goldman, entrepreneur
Federica Matta, artist

SPONSORS

Ville de Miami

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