Museum Of Contemporary Art, North Miami Offers Robust Public Programming Throughout January

As part of the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami (MOCA)’s mission to connect diverse audiences and cultures by providing a welcoming center at the heart of the community, the museum is offering a robust series of educational and public programming to celebrate Haitian Independence throughout the month of January. Currently on view are MOCA’s newest exhibitions, “Didier William: Nou Kite Tout Sa Dèyè” and Leah Gordon’s “Kanaval.”

On view through April 16, 2023, “Didier William: Nou Kite Tout Sa Dèyè” is the largest solo presentation of Didier William’s career. Translated as “We’ve Left That All Behind,” the show presents an in-depth look at the Haitian-born, North Miami-raised artist’s career and memory among the very neighborhood where he once grew up.

In a blend of personal reflections, biographical anecdotes, and art historical moments, some of the works in the show recontextualize historical iconographies and ideas, stripping them of their “known” truths and transforming each into something entirely new. By doing so, William playfully and unapologetically reclaims autonomy over a fragmented record of history, engaging his personal connection to the complexity of immigrant narratives and queer identity to create opportunity for investigation and redemption.

Also on view through April 16, 2023, “Kanaval” is a survey by photographer, filmmaker, curator, and writer Leah Gordon that documents twenty years of Carnival in Haiti. Curated by MOCA Curator Adeze Wilford, the exhibition consists of a series of black-and-white photographs taken on a mechanical medium format camera. The images are contextualized by a series of oral histories relayed by various troupe leaders, who also oversee the design of the costume and generate the narratives surrounding Carnival. Their stories reflect the wealth of invention, fable, and self-generated mythology prevalent in much of Haitian culture. The photographs will be accompanied by a new feature-length documentary on the Carnival providing a kinetic counterpoint to the portraits.

MOCA’s January programming includes:

City of North Miami Soup Joumou Celebration/Sunday Stories: “Mmmmm! Soup Joumou!” by Carline Smother

Sunday, Jan. 1, 9 – 11:30 a.m.

Details: MOCA is celebrating Haitian Independence. Starting at 9 a.m., families are invited to join the fourth annual Soup Joumou celebration. As part of the event, MOCA’s Community Engagement Department will provide Vice Mayor Mary Estimé-Irvin (District 3) with five original art prints by artist Didier William to raffle to North Miami Residents. Then, MOCA’s Education team will present Sunday Stories by reading Carline Smother’s “Mmmmm! Soup Joumou!” After the reading, participants will learn about line art techniques by drawing family portraits with a single line inspired by Haitian artist Gerald Bloncourt’s artwork.

Sponsored by the North Miami Community Redevelopment Agency, this early childhood art series engages toddlers and fosters reading, motor skill development and socialization. MOCA Sunday Stories is a great way for children to bond with their parents or guardians as they create together.

Cost: Free (donations are welcomed)

The museum is open until 1 p.m. that day

RSVP: For MOCA’s Sunday Stories, please visit:

For the City of North Miami’s Soup Joumou celebration, please visit:

MOCA miniMakers

Saturday, Jan. 7, 2 – 4 p.m.

Details: Ring in 2023 with MOCA! In this MOCA miniMakers workshop, participants will take a polaroid photograph of each family group and create a mixed media collage inspired by their family goals and wishes for the new year. MOCA miniMakers is MOCA’s free and inclusive series of art workshops for children ages six and up. Children will have access to a variety of art techniques, as well as an inclusive curriculum incorporating step-by-step guides, STEAM activation and creative free play. Taught by experienced artists and sponsored by the North Miami Community Redevelopment Agency, MOCA miniMakers aims to foster an accessible spirit of learning through the arts.

Cost: Free

RSVP: For more information, please visit:

MOCA Makers: Figure Drawing

Saturday, Jan. 14, 1 – 3 p.m.

Details: MOCA Makers is a series of adult art workshops, which bring forward an artistically interested public to work with and learn from local artists in South Florida. Topics such as figure drawing, print making, and portrait painting are hosted for all level of participants. Art Packs are available for purchase from the MOCA Shop. This January, MOCA will be studying figure drawing with artist and educator Shawna Moulton. Inspired by the work of Didier William, this program will include a tour of the current exhibition, “Didier William: Nou Kite Tout Sa Dèyè.” MOCA Makers courses are made possible with support from the North Miami Community Redevelopment Agency.

Cost: Free

RSVP: For more information, please visit:

Conversations at MOCA: NorthStar – The Meaning of Haiti in Diaspora

Wednesday, Jan. 18, 7 – 8:30 p.m.

Details: MOCA will host “Conversations at MOCA: NorthStar – The Meaning of Haiti in Diaspora,” a fascinating conversation that explores the meaning of Haiti throughout history in the African diaspora and the world. The African diaspora has influenced aspects of history, music, culture and politics throughout the Americas, the Caribbean and beyond. Where does Haiti, the world’s first free Black republic, fall into this line of comparative cultural studies? Does Haiti serve as the NorthStar? Led by Dr. Erica Moiah James, MOCA will explore these questions and more in conversation with Dr. Cae Joseph-Massena, Nadege Green, and Dr. Melvin Butler. Each speaker will delve into their respective areas of expertise spanning through comparative approaches to African diasporic literatures, the historic inequities and erasures of black and brown contributions in America, and the influence of cultural politics of popular culture.

Cost: Free

RSVP: For more information, please visit:—The-Meaning-of-Haiti-in-Diaspora

Art on the Plaza: “Braiding a Story” with Artist VantaBlack

Friday, Jan. 27, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Details: Join us for an intimate artist-lead workshop on braiding, story telling, and bonding. Participants are encouraged to bring their own strips of fabric to add to their braids as we gather on the MOCA Plaza alongside VantaBlack’s current work “To What Lengths”.

Cost: Free

RSVP: For more information, please visit:

Jazz at MOCA Featuring Tal Cohen and Special Guest John Daversa

Friday, Jan. 27, 7 p.m.

Details: “Jazz at MOCA” is MOCA’s free outdoor concert series in-person on the last Friday of every month. On Friday, Jan. 27, MOCA is pleased to present Tal Cohen and special guest John Daversa. The Art of Duo, multi-Grammy award-winning trumpeter John Daversa collaborates with acclaimed jazz pianist Tal Cohen, creating special chemistry of spontaneity and improvisation that dives deep into the realms of possibilities and enchantment within the celebrated duo format.

Cost: Jazz at MOCA is free and open to the public. The gallery is open from 7-10 p.m. with museum admission. Admission to the museum is $10. Admission for students, seniors, and visitors identifying as disabled is $5. Admission is free to MOCA members, children under 12, North Miami residents, city employees, veterans, and caregivers accompanying people who are disabled.

RSVP: For more information, please visit:

Art on the Plaza: “To What Lengths”

Oct. 14 through Jan. 20, 2023

Details: On view through Jan. 20, 2023, as part of MOCA’s Art on the Plaza series, VantaBlack’s “To What Lengths,” showcases a key component to her artistic practice by reflecting on legacy building and preservation as foundational to Black culture and other diasporic peoples. VantaBlack explores how ideas about legacy are woven into everyday actions by activating five palm trees on the MOCA Plaza with large-scale braids, adorned with beads, metal, and artificial sunflowers and gardenias. The braids of each tree follows stylings representative of the women in VantaBlack’s family. At the base of each tree is a round mat with cushions for seating, inviting viewers to engage with the work while looking up.

· Cost: Free and open to the public

· Where: Outside on MOCA Plaza

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