Things to Do in Miami: “The Center for Post-Capitalist History” at Laundromat Art Space

Laundromat Art Space is an artist-run studio and exhibition complex in the Little Haiti neighborhood of Miami. Founded in 2015 by a collective of alumni from Wynwood Arts District locations, the arts complex focuses on the development of regional and local contemporary artists. Currently on display at the studio is “The Center for Post-Capitalist History” (CPCH), an exhibition created by artist Leah Sandler.

“The CPCH Staging Area at Laundromat Art Space,” explains director Ron Sanchez, “is an exhibition of video, text, photographs and digital elements that lead the viewer into a possible future that addresses the urgencies of today through the voice of the fictional museum.”

Going further, Sanchez defines the CPCH as a fictional museum that introduces the viewer to an ambiguous archiving process and describes a future landscape of disruption and travel inherited from present conditions. With specific writing, production and design strategies, Sanchez says this project presents itself as an institution and intervenes in our lived reality through its voice.

According to Orlando-based interdisciplinary artist, writer and educator Leah Sandler, the CPCH is a conceptual project that plays with the dividing line between fact and fiction.

“It offers viewers speculation about possible futures in a few different forms,” ​​she explains. “It has been shown as window installations, guerrilla radio interventions, print publications and exhibitions.”

Sandler considers himself an artist and a writer who works across disciplines and media.

“I am influenced by my place in Florida and experiences I’ve had navigating inadequate public systems in a state that is dangerously vulnerable to climate change, with a visible wealth gap and looming housing crises in major cities,” she says.

click to enlarge Artist Leah Sandler - PHOTOGRAPH BY KYLE SMITH/COURTESY OF LAUNDROMAT ART SPACE

Artist Leah Sandler

Photo by Kyle Smith/Courtesy of Laundromat Art Space

By combining video, text, drawings, flags and interdisciplinary collaborative projects, she creates parafictional worlds. These parafictions give substance to imagined institutions, histories, manifestos and landscapes.

In its manifestos and strategies, CPCH promotes the understanding of human history as a species history within the geologic time scale. One such fictional strategy, ‘Embodied Archiving’, is a poetic description of an interconnected and entangled human body that functions as an archive repository.

The project is the result of collaborations between Sandler and a network of other creatives including designer Britta Seisums Davis, photographer Steve Gula, designer Casandra Hill, voice actor Wes Keeley, fashion designer Bethany Mikell, sound engineer/voice actor Jared Silvia, photographer and videographer Kyle Robert Smith, voice actor Genevieve Steele and video editor Zach Trebino.

As an artist developing in the heart of capitalism, the multidisciplinary artist confesses that post-capitalism is a subject she approaches ‘with great trepidation’. Sandler also has “a hopeful acknowledgment that we are planting the seeds of the future in the present, but also an awareness of many of the contradictions, ironies and inescapable complicity of working as an artist at the center of it.”

– Jonel Just, ArtburstMiami.com

“The Center for Post-Capitalist History.” On display through May 5 at Laundromat Art Space, 185 NE 59th St., Miami; laundromatartspace.com. Tuesday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday and Monday by appointment only.

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