All Night Long We Heard Birds Passing - CODAworx

All Night Long We Heard Birds Passing

Submitted by Lydia Rubio

Client: Miami Dade County Art in Public Places

Location: Miami, FL, United States

Completion date: 2023

Artwork budget: $270,000

Project Team


Art in Public Places

Miami Dade County

Studio assistants fabrication and installation 2003

Ralph Provisero; Ben Levin

LR Studio Inc

Installers 2023

Esmerlin Candelo

Asu Bronze


A linear narrative with words quoted from the journal of Columbus originated this concept for the art work, Columbus sailed the same waters traveled by the cruise ships.  The text and title of the piece is interwoven in 12 high aluminum relief letters between the paintings and sculptures : “All night long we heard birds passing.” Aluminum sculptures, water jet cut sheets and riveted.
9 water birds of Florida, two ships. The oil on aluminum paintings represent the skies of Miami. The work explores journey as transformation, growth and self-discovery.
Overall dimensions: 10 x 210 x 6 feet deep.


The concept: a scroll-like format, a narrative text, intercalating paintings and sculptures, combined to create a linear installation designed specifically to fit and enhance the 125 feet long by 25 feet high wall within the terminal building. The paintings describe the skies of Miami in a 24 hour sequence. The sculptural birds are water birds of Florida. The text embedded in the installation points to the experience of travel as transformation. The sculptures and paintings were integrated to the existing color scheme of the terminal and the walls, creating an overall theatrical effect. This is a reinstallation of the 16 original works and texts, initially installed in 2003 at Terminal F of the Passenger Lobby in the Port of Miami. This reinstallation was finished in 2023 and is now located at the Carnival Cruise Line Terminal in the Port of Miami.


The design process for this commission was based on original drawings and maquettes of the sculptures, incorporating the existing design of the Terminal building. Cardboard templates were developed, in an origami-like fashion, for each aluminum sculpture. These shapes were subsequently drawn and sent to be waterjet cut out of standard aluminum sheets, they then were assembled, riveted, finished and installed by the artist with assistants. They range in size from 6 feet wide to 10 feet in length and are set high in space and flat against the walls to avoid projecting into the terminal corridor. The method used in these sculptures turned out to be an inventive solution to create wonderful forms in an economical technique to fit a tight budget.

The six oil paintings range in sizes from 6 feet to 9 feet high. The supports are sandwich aluminum corrugated core panels fabricated by Conservation Art, LA