New Deering Estate art exhibit: “Prelude to 2100”

The ensemble cast of “Prelude to 2100.” (Photo by Armando Rodriguez/Miami-Dade County.)

The interactive art exhibit “Prelude to 2100” opening Thursday presents the historic Deering Estate as a place of refuge for people from around the world displaced by climate change in 2050.

“Prelude to 2100” is an immersive art experience where visitors to the exhibit will attend an “Open House” presented by the refugees and learn how their worlds have changed.

Laurencia Strauss’ bubble pops are shaped like snow globes and depict local Miami areas. (Courtesy of the artist.)

The event, which runs through Sunday, features a theatrical component, dance performances, interactive art and visual art by over 30 artists. Proceeds from the event will help support three local non-profit organizations helping the community and environment: the Urban Oasis Project, The CLEO Institute and Catalyst Miami.

“This is really bringing together a lot of things, dance, theatre, music, visual artists,” said Susan Caraballo, who conceived of a project intended to show how climate will impact Florida and the world. “It’s a big multidisciplinary event that is specifically addressing these issues.”

Caraballo has curated and produced art events for more than 25 years, with a specific interest in climate change and justice. She is one of six artists who worked with local arts organization Live Arts Miami to create works focused on climate change and sustainability in Miami.

She started working on “Prelude to 2100” with playwright Juan C. Sanchez more than a year ago, reaching out to artists, holding auditions, hosting a three-week workshop at the Deering Estate and constantly replanning because of COVID-19.

The experience consists of several interactive installations. Upon arrival, guests will receive $5 in the fictional currency they can use to buy food and drinks and to interact with the installation.

If guests want one of Laurencia Strauss’ snow-globe-shaped popsicles called “bubble pops,” they will have to jot down a way to combat climate change. After enjoying the dessert, they can read advice from other customers that Strauss has transcribed onto the sticks.

“The “Bubble Pops” title refers to popsicles and to the end of an illusionary world where we deny and ignore the climate crisis threats to South Florida,” Strauss said. “I hope people who participate in the Bubble Pops have a playful and provocative experience that reminds them of our capacity to take care of ourselves, each other and the planet.”

The exhibition is intended to provoke a visitor to think about how they can change their behavior.

“It’s not about having a solution to climate change because one person cannot do that. I hope that they do feel empowered to take action in whatever that means for them,” Caraballo said, “For some people, it could be as simple as using a reusable water bottle and reusable bags. For another person, it could mean wanting to run for office.”

Dayana Morales, who plays 27-year-old Magdalena from Venezuela, got involved with “Prelude to 2100” six months ago.

“I think climate change is something that everyone knows about but they cannot relate,” Morales said. “I think through theatre and art there’s that humanity that’s missing on the topic of climate change.”

Morales’ performs in the “Open House” component of the exhibit, where the refugees work together to survive at the Deering Estate in spite of hurricanes, droughts, mudslides, floods and more.

“Now they are taking action,” Morales said. “But we do not have to wait until that to take action.”

Dayana Morales’ character, Magdalena, is having second thoughts on her marriage and bringing a child into the world as it is. (Photo by Armando Rodriguez/Miami-Dade County.)

Tickets for the exhibit are $20. For tickets and additional information, go to the Live Arts Miami website, https://liveartsmiami.org/events/prelude-to-2100/.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly described how one obtains “the bubble pops.”

Sofia Zuñiga is a sophomore pursuing a bachelor's in Digital Journalism with a master's in Global Strategic Communications under the 4+1 Accelerated Pathways program. She is also completing a minor in Social Media and E-Marketing Analytics, and a certificate in Queer Studies. She hopes to promote social awareness and educate the public on community efforts.