Art exhibit on South commemorates Hispanic Heritage Month

Anabel Sanchez

Online Editor


This month at Broward College South Campus, we are granted an immersive look into the latest creation of one of South Florida’s most imaginative artists. Broward College’s own Jônatas Chimen Dias DaSilva-Benayon debuts an exhibit that was months in the making.

In contribution for Hispanic Heritage Month, celebrated Sept. 1-30, Broward College’s Office of Cultural Affairs & Student Engagement present Chimen’s latest exhibit titled The Refugee Cathedral of the Ascending Bull.

Created exclusively for this occasion, Chimen, who is a professor of art at Broward College South Campus, crafted a deeply personal work of installation art and paintings that reflect his diverse artistic abilities.

Influenced by his own personal journey in delving into his family’s genealogy for over ten years, Chimen discovered that his family had spent hundreds of years immigrating throughout the world. It’s a story that reflects the histories and realities of millions of other families in the current world today.

With the immigration theme prevalent in this exhibit, Chimen uses a combination of vivid colors, fabrics and mixed-media elements to pave the overall canvas. Each individual painting is swirling with symbolism, with interesting back stories to match that lead to their conception.

The interactive portion of the exhibit was created with meticulous purpose and intent. Even some of Chimen’s own students, who fittingly come from all walks of life, contributed in helping construct the striking installation.

Overall, it is an exhibit meant to stimulate both the eyes and ears, but more importantly, provoke one’s own emotions and thoughts.

Chimen, a former Broward College alumnus, was also Broward College South’s Artist in Residence this past summer. An artist, author and academic, he specializes in numerous styles of art including Spanish Realism, sculpture and time-based formats.

His works have been featured in art galleries and auctions, such as The MONA Biennale, The Jerusalem Biennale, Jewish Museum of Florida, The Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum, Miami Basel Art Week and Artexpo New York. He was also awarded Artist of the Year by the Anti-Defamation League in 2015.

Photo info: Jônatas Chimen Dias DaSilva-Benayon with his exhibit, The Refugee Cathedral of the Ascending Bull, in the art gallery on South. Jessica Hayek/The Observer