This weekend marks the first annual Wynwood Art Fair, showcasing the work of a cadre of contemporary _ and mostly local _ artists, music and family entertainment.
The fair benefits Lotus House women's shelter, which serves more than 100 women and children everyday in Miami. Constance Margulies, who's at the helm of the fair and president of the shelter, said that funds raised will go toward basic operations, programming, counseling, job training, and enrichment activities, like art for the women in need.
Margulies, whose husband Martin is a well-known Miami art collector, was very pleased with the turnout and response to the inaugural fair.
"It's really been amazing. So far, we've had an out pouring of support in sponsorships, the fabulous art auction that we did on Friday night, and community attendance at the fair. We're thrilled," she said.
Live paintings by local artists like Gustavo Oviedo, Jessy Nite, and others let passersby a peek at the artistic process. Installations and performances also give a touch what Miami's got to offer as far as talent. South Florida galleries and museums have booths set up for blocks, offering interactive creative experiences.
At the de la Cruz Collection's tent, fairgoers can purchase a wax likeness of artist Bert Rodriguez' nose made onsite with a Mold-A-Rama. Happy-makers Friends With You conceived the designs behind happily smiling deliciously joyful edible cupcakes available for purchase. Philadelphia noise duo FUN performed a few dissonant sets that stopped people in their tracks and gave them a new perspective on music.
"I think what I loved most is that the 35 or more artists that came to the fair and the 50 plus exhibitors came together as one. What I loved most was the collaboration, the interaction, and the playfulness. The fairgoers are painting, laughing, sculpting, dancing, writing poetry. Every conceivable form or art is happening," Margulies said.
Misael Soto, of the Art and Culture Center of Hollywood, worked at the fair. That booth featured a video installation of a live performance by 3PQ, an artist collaborative which includes Freddy Jouwayed, Sinisa Kukec and Stephan Tugral.
Soto said the fair was inclusive.
"I thought it was a great way for the Wynwood arts community to reach out to people who wouldn't typically attend art openings during art walk," he said. "It unites the arts community, and it shows that we don't need Art Basel. Miami can hold it's own."
The fair continues on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.