Meet The Artist Revealing The Prosaic Wonders Of Daily Street Life


michael loveland sitting on a stool in his studio

Artist Michael Loveland poses in his Miami studio.

Every city has two faces: the glittering metropolis of postcards and cinematic aerials, and the messier, pedestrian side—the weathered sidewalks, graffitied walls and mom-and-pop shops only locals know and love. Artist Michael Loveland revels in this more quotidian beauty, animating the mundane through his sculptural assemblages of found objects and street photography. “I’m more interested in cracks in the parking lot than the thing you’re supposed to look at,” he explains. “I like finding the beauty in something we bypass every day.”

wall of photography and magazine clippings in michael loveland's studio

Photography and magazine clippings decorate a wall in the artist’s studio for inspiration.

collage work by michael loveland

Combining found items and his photography, Loveland creates assemblages as a way to give new light and meaning to mundane, commonly overlooked materials.

small figurines and artwork in michael loveland's studio

His studio is a cabinet of curiosities stacked high with years of treasured finds, such as figurines, fabric, scrap metal, street signs and discarded billboards.

michael loveland holding skateboard forms with collaged elements

Loveland creates skateboard forms with collaged elements.

fabric in michael loveland's studio

Fabrics in the artist’s studio.

scrap metal and industrial elements on a table

The artist cuts scrap metal and other pieces for his works.

Tactile memories flood the Miami native’s assemblages, which splice together artifacts such as old adverts, faded bodega signs, scrap metals patinated by rain and quintessential Floridian oddities like concrete pineapple figurines. “I love the history that comes with what I find,” Loveland says. “The scratches, the dings—it’s telling a story, and I’m just translating it.” More recent work incorporates the artist’s street photography, rendered onto glass sheets by a local commercial printer. Layered with unique finds, these images of ordinary moments—coconut trees, broken street signs, stacked rubber tires—transform everyday sights into something more lyrical.

Working on tables or the floor of his warehouse studio, Loveland plays with different configurations until “something turns on like a light switch,” he describes. Painted elements help integrate components, from hand screen-printed images to free-form gestural brushstrokes that recall buffing—the paint- covered graffiti that defines Miami’s streets. He then installs everything around sculptural metal armatures he welds by hand.

Outside the studio, through public art projects like Omni Park—a once-derelict plot turned into a temporary parkland—the artist also enjoys giving back to the street culture that so inspired him. Surrounding residents flocked to its skateboard ramps, performance stage and art installations, including Loveland’s chickee huts fashioned from chain-link fencing and made in consultation with traditional Miccosukee chickee-hut builders. Previously barring people from the property, the repurposed fencing helped ground Miamians in the place they call home. Loveland lives for these “quiet moments, when we see the things we overlook constantly,” he notes. “That’s what life’s about: stepping back and focusing on the simplicities.”