Today's Daily Dirty Diary

A NEW AHOL IN MIAMI

Just when a Miami art fair decides to pitch its tent in the Midtown shopping center and proclaim itself Art “Wynwood,” regarded New Times art critic Carlos Suarez De Jesus pulls the rug from under the soon-to-be concrete slab. Proclaiming that Wynwood is going to art hell, Suarez De Jesus plants his flag in Little Havana with freshly-squeezed ad hoc space, Mercenary Square.

Little Havana, an abstruse location to stage a contemporary art space, is home to many Cuban immigrants for its sociocultural gatherings. The mission behind Suarez De Jesus’ Mercenary Square is to introduce emerging and underrepresented artists to South Florida audiences while simultaneously honing his New Times prowess and slapping around a canvas or two in the back office. The first artist to christen the sharp-tongued critic’s pad may come as a surprise to many: the modest Hialeah-native street artist Ahol (to some, Ahol Sniffs Glue). It is curious, then, what the New Times’ pundit would see in a relatively unknown artist, aside from both unforgivably tagging Miami with their signature writing and an appetite for throwing back Heinekens. After entering the art dive’s front door adorned with City of Miami citations, DIRTY quickly understood that this—Ahol’s departure from ubiquitous drowsy-eyed murals to refreshingly intimate conceptual smut—was what caught the eye of Suarez De Jesus.

Ahol’s “Full-Time” solo exhibition is a far cry from his first show at Butter Gallery, stocked with artifacts from his past two jobs where he became a slave to the cubicle (versus the paint brush). Suarez De Jesus tells DIRTY, “One of his jobs was at a porn company taking phone orders from people purchasing movies. The most recent is selling a high-end diet cantina on the phone. At one job, he was selling men fantasies of desirable women, the other, he was selling women a product to make them more desirable to mates. At least that what the sales pitches sound like. They actually had Ahol complete a high-pressure phone sales training course for the gig.” These jobs only inspired a fury of autobiographical works consisting of a sound, video, photography and sculpture.

Our DIRTY favorite is a sound installation appropriately installed in the bathroom. Popping a squat, the viewer listens to genuine recordings of men ordering porn. Ahol even caught DIRTY in the act, ordering one of our usuals—”I want Bootylicious Teenage Lesbians I and II…and please wait a second while my grandmother lends me her credit card.”

If you’re in Miami, chew on some tasty chorizo in Little Havana tonight—Friday, February 17th from 7 to 11 P.M. at Mercenary Square, 537 SW 12th Avenue, Miami. Enter through the rear. (What else would you expect from Ahol?) Complimentary cocktails will be served courtesy of Don Abuelo Rum. The event will be capped with live performances by Sound Selectors (Otto Von Bass Warrior, Mr. Feathers and Jose Blue Jeans), followed by an after-party beginning 11 P.M. at the Vagabond, 30 NE 14th Street, Downtown Miami.

TEXT / VIDEO: ANTHONY SPINELLO

 






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