Situated in the heart of South Beach, the Wolfsonian-FIU showcases the greatest century of growth and change humanity has ever known—from 1850 to 1950. The Museum traces the beginnings of Art Deco in Europe, and how it migrated to the U.S. and became Miami Beach’s iconic style in the 1920s and 1930s.
Farm to Factory: With more than 200,000 objects, it is one of the largest university collections in the country, showcasing the evolution from agrarian to urban societies, colonial empires to Cold War superpowers, the first spike of the Transcontinental Railroad, and the advent of television.
Mundane to Monumental: Household appliances that sped the pace of work; designs that bridged cultures; architectural plans fueled by ambition; and propaganda that helped turn the tides of war. The core focus is material from Europe and United States, extending to regions of Latin America, Asia, and Africa.
Curiosity to Collection: A single hotel room key launched what is now one of the largest American university art collections—a cultural cornerstone of Miami since 1995, a jewel of FIU since 1997, and an iconic landmark.
Storehouse to Symbol: Originally built in 1927 by Robertson & Patterson to house the Washington Storage Company, the Mediterranean Revival building on the corner of 10th Street and Washington Avenue has been a beacon of culture in Miami Beach for generations. The structure was enlarged and transformed in 1992 by architect Mark Hampton into the state-of-the-art museum it is today.
Connoisseur to Civic Leader: Mitchell “Micky” Wolfson, Jr. (b. 1939, Miami), fascinated by the active role design plays in shaping human experiences, perceptions, and attitudes, established The Wolfsonian in the spirit of his international upbringing and varied collecting taste. An author, philanthropist, and former diplomat, Wolfson is also the founder of their sister museum in Genoa, Italy: The Wolfsoniana.
Exhibits include handcrafted objects; household appliances; designs that bridged cultures; ambitious architectural plans; and war propaganda. The collections’ core focus is on items from Europe and the United States, extending to regions of Latin America, Asia, and Africa. There is a Design Store + Coffee Bar offering snacks and unusual gifts.
Visit: 1001 Washington Ave., Miami Beach; 305-531-1001; wolfsonian.org