South Miami Plaza

Sawfish: A sawfish, sea stars, and horseshoe crabs frolic through the lobby – defiant, despite the precarious nature of their endangered South Florida habitat. The artist wants you to treasure them, along with your beloved friends and family.

Horseshoe Crab March: In this work, Cortada marches 15 horseshoe crabs from the outer wall, across a glass wall and doorway and into the inner lobby of the building. Inside, Cortada’s smalltooth sawfish swims along the seagrass. Above, beneath a skylight, his sea stars filter light, as if shining down through the waves. These creatures are part of a parade of marine animals flowing through the site– including an octopus and seahorses.

Sea Star Light: Cortada depicted several forms of marine life at this South Miami public art commission—the project is titled Neptune’s Realm. Like his other works, they remind viewers about their connection to nature.

Sea Stars: Xavier Cortada elegantly created a series of sea stars crossing a bed of seagrass in this hand-carved ceramic mural. Reckless boating, pollution, and dredging imperil these seagrass beds. The wondrous allure of these ancient species motivates our efforts to protect their fragile habitats.

NightSwimming:Cortada created this 16’ ft long ceramic tile mural of seahorses for the exterior wall of the South Miami Plaza building. Seahorses are esteemed for their grace and their unique role reversal, wherein the male partner gives birth. The distinctive “crown” on top of their heads is as unique as a human fingerprint. The artist invites you to contemplate the elaborate and sophisticated life roaming beneath the waves.

Octopus: This is Xavier Cortada’s octopus. Among the most intelligent and flexible invertebrates, the octopus thrives in many diverse regions of the ocean. Their threatening color displays and ability to camouflage – along with their bilateral symmetry – creates one of the most awe-inspiring creatures of the sea.