Key Largo and South Florida News


Date ArticleType
12/20/2018 Press Release

Everglades National Park Hosts New Sculpture Exhibit by Robert Chamgers, SEREPENS: Serenoa repens

Everglades National Park invites the public to experience a new art exhibit entitled, “SEREPENS: Serenoa repens” by sculptor Robert Chambers at the AIRIE Nest Gallery inside the Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center through April 12, 2019. The visitor center is located at the southeastern entrance to Everglades National Park, 10 miles southwest of Homestead.

From his experience as an Artist-in-Resident of Everglades National Park in early 2018, sculptor Robert Chambers created a new body of work combining elements such as biomimicry, 3D printing and principles of evolutionary biology to express the urgency of conserving the delicate relationships of natural phenomena and indigenous species that make up the Everglades. Chambers’ work is inspired by Serenoa repens, the tenacious plant commonly known as saw palmetto, a symbol of the Everglades’ complex interplay of water flow, plant life, fire and weather.

During his residency, Chambers visited Archbold Biological Station where director and lead scientist, Hilary Swain, captivated him with descriptions of the remarkable tenacity of Serenoa repens, which can live upwards of 5,000 years, thanks to its expansive root system. A model of this root system, created with cellulose fibers and 3D printing, stylized to look like a gigantic open-ended Celtic knot, is the gallery centerpiece, surrounded by sculptures, drawings and scientific graphs about the plant and its ecology.

Chambers designed and produced the sculptures in collaboration with Florida International University’s (FIU) Robotics and Digital Fabrication Laboratory and the CARTA Innovation Lab at FIU’s Miami Beach Urban Studios.

Chambers’ solo exhibition is made possible with the support of an Art Works grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and AIRIE, Inc.

Upcoming Sundays in the Park programs by AIRIE:
• Dec. 30, 2018 at 1pm: Curator’s tour at the AIRIE Nest Gallery, followed by Everglades Imprint, a performance by Dale Andree at Long Pine Key
• Jan. 20, 2019 at 1pm: Curator’s tour at the AIRIE Nest Gallery, followed by a cypress dome hike with the bicycle theater troupe, Agile Rascals
• Feb. 24, 2019: FreshArt Live broadcast from Everglades National Park
• Mar. 24, 2019: Landscape Listening with composer Matt Venuti

About Artists in Residence in Everglades (AIRIE): Exhibitions and programs presented by Artists in Residence in Everglades, AIRIE Inc., draw upon the creative voices of AIRIE Fellows to advocate for the appreciation and preservation of this subtropical wilderness. Since 2001, AIRIE has brought over 150 artists, writers, composers and choreographers to Everglades National Park for month-long residencies. With the support of a 2017 Knight Arts Challenge Grant, AIRIE transformed a former conference room in the Everglades National Park’s main visitor center, into a stunning exhibition space. Called the AIRIE Nest, this space hosts interdisciplinary contemporary art exhibitions that connect the ecology and cultural history of the Everglades and highlight art and science collaborations.
Artists in Residence in Everglades, Inc. is an Official Partner of the Everglades National Park.
For more information about the exhibit, visit AIRIE’s website at

The Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center is located at 40001 State Road 9336, approximately 10 miles southwest of Homestead. It features award-winning natural history displays, an 18-minute film about Everglades National Park, and related book sales. Center hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Admission to the visitor center is free.
For information and directions to the park, please visit the park website at or search for Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center.