Over 1000 people were in attendance at the Miami Downtown Arts District’s (MDAD) Kick-Off event held on Friday, September 19, 2014 during DWNTWN Art Days at McCormick Place in Downtown Miami. Alfredo V. Pereira III, Intergovernmental Liaison for the Office of the Mayor, Miami-Dade County presented founding MDAD board members, Sean McCormick (McCormick Place Miami), Katy Stallfus (Artisan Lounge), and James Echols (Life is Art) with a Proclamation declaring September 19th Miami Downtown Arts District Day. Lee Ann Lester (not in attendance) is MDAD Board Vice President.
A featured performance by Florida Grand Opera Young Artist and Soprano Betsy Diaz would jumpstart an exciting evening filled with art exhibits by prominent South Florida artists such as Stephen Gamson and Eleazar Delgado, as well as musical performances and film screenings by MIA Animation and Miami Short Film Festival. Outside, guests could enjoy watching Wall Brawl (an organization that arranges for local artists compete against each other in a timed performance), or relax in an outdoor sculpture garden and lounge equipped with food truck bites and refreshments. Freebee provided complimentary transportation for guests wishing to visit other Art Day venues.
“The formation of MDAD has occurred out of the necessity to recognize Downtown Miami as the gateway to all of the arts, be it world class museums and theaters or the local artist and small gallery,” commented Sean McCormick, MDAD President. “With the gentrification of areas such as Wynwood, we are witnessing the impact it has on local artists. We hope that MDAD’s efforts will preserve this art district – a foundation for artists to create and for us to help keep them visible to the community.”
MDAD sponsored events will continue the first Friday of each month with special events planned in November (Pre Art Basel), and December in conjunction with Art Basel Miami Beach, Miami Art Week and in alliance with the debut of Downtown Miami’s Concept Art Fair produced by David and Lee Ann Lester. For more information about Miami Downtown Arts District, visit: https://www.facebook.com/MiamiDowntownArtsDistrict, call 305.206.4734 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
MDAD is a non-profit organization that serves cultural institutions and museums; galleries, local artists and studios; as well as businesses, event venues, and restaurants that showcase both local and international artists. MDAD aims to unify the Downtown and Brickell Arts District by providing a variety of programs that allow the community to explore the arts district, such as First Friday Downtown Art Night, or provide exposure to smaller independent events through a variety of membership support services.
The boundaries for the district will be Young Arts on Biscayne Blvd and 21st Street to the north; I-95 to the west; 26th Road to the South; and Biscayne Bay to the East including Watson Island.
MDAD is currently offering an introductory annual membership fee of $300 for organizations and $75 for artists. Membership provides a variety of marketing and promotion opportunities, access to participate in First Friday Downtown Art Nights plus educational and professional development meetings and workshops.
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