ART REVIEW The science of the surreal

The most surprising thing about “Enrique Chavarria: Journey into the Subconscious” isn’t the surfing demons, the sensual imagery, or the over-the-top natural symbolism; it’s that this exhibition is being held at the Miami Museum of Science. Yes, that Museum of Science, and in the same space that housed last year’s horribly disappointing “City of Wonders.”

Walking into this small gallery is like entering every Myst clone-simultaneously. One frame shows a two-headed snake and flying oxen, and another shows a sensual forest inhabited by some rather frisky woodland sprites. Then, upon closer examination, one can see the natural world interwoven with the fantastic elements to create a colorful and imaginative set of symbols that soar far over the heads of the museum’s pint sized visitors. These symbols range from physical freedom and mental captivity to the interconnectedness of man to his environment.

This exhibit for the most part lives up to the press kit with the included picture being one of the more banal exceptions. The exhibit is actually worth a late afternoon visit since it is located away from the main gallery and has a much quieter, more adult atmosphere conducive to pondering the bizarre and finely layered meaning of it all.

“Enrique Chavarria: Journey into the Subconscious” is on display at the Museum of Science and is co-sponsored by the Miami Consulate General of Mexico. The museum is located at 3280 South Miami Ave. and student admission is $8, but is reduced to $6 after 4 p.m.

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Jonathan Twiggar can be contacted at