Miami Beach Vacant Stores Unlock Opportunities for 71 Artists
Miami is starting the new year with some Art! Seventy-one artists have been selected by a curatorial panel of experts to display their works in the inaugural installment of “Miami Beach Open House,” an innovative program that fills empty Miami Beach storefronts while exposing artists to a wider audience of potential buyers.
Miami Beach Open House will launch in late January, concurrently with Culture Crawl, the citywide monthly artistic activation that connects residents and visitors to Miami Beach cultural organizations for one night of special programming.
“The iconic beauty of Miami Beach has been a source of inspiration for countless artists, but the lack of affordable studio space has been a major obstacle for those same artists,” Mayor Dan Gelber observed. “This program overcomes that challenge while simultaneously expanding the city’s cultural and business footprints.”
Miami Beach Open House is funded by a $200,000 grant that was approved by the City Commission. A $2,500 stipend will be awarded to each artist for incidental expenses, such as deliveries, insurance, parking, utilities, marketing and publicity. Artists will be encouraged to sell their works, build networks, collaborate with Miami Beach institutions and exhibit their creations.
The artists were selected from a pool of 323 applicants based on the quality of previously completed projects, artistic accomplishments, cultural impact, project diversity and the completeness of their application package.
A curatorial advisory committee that made the selections included three members from the City of Miami Beach Art in Public Places Committee (AiPP) and two representatives from the City of Miami Beach Cultural Arts Council.
“The city is pleased at the level of interest by property owners who are looking to leverage their vacant space to beautify and revitalize commercial corridors while providing a unique opportunity for emerging artists to engage the community,” Mayor Gelber added.
While the exact term of each lease is subject to negotiation, participating property owners were encouraged to allow occupancy of no fewer than 30 days. Property owners interested in participating should contact the city’s Director of Economic Development Rickelle Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org.