“I love the smell of aerosol in the morning!”
I remember when I moved to Wynwood in winter, 2010, winter being a very loose term in Miami. Stints in LA, Chicago and the start of a recession that forced me from NYC were the main catalysts of my southern migration.
Miami, for me really became the Magic city in all aspects of the term. I had been searching for a place with energy, excitement and an overall appreciation for urban arts and I found all that and more there.
We opened EVLworld during Art Basel, Art Basel is the term everyone uses to describe the explosion of arts that happens each December. It’s become such an amazing festival of arts that Art Basel has spawned several more large participants into Miami as well. But Art Basel has nothing to do with me, nor with Wynwood. It’s just the name for the time these days.
Besides the annual Art Basel arts madness Wynwood also sports a monthly artwalk, an artwalk that I have never seen the likes of and those to elements are the main reasons that I chose to settle into Wynwood. Last Art Basel I was my 4th and each year I think the creative festivities may slow down, each year I’m proven wrong. I wish I could explain all the amazing events that I witnessed not to mention the hundreds I couldn’t get to!
I wish I could properly explain how much talent comes through Wynwood, both locally as well as worldwide painting and creating and leaving a drab industrial neighborhood blanketed in energy and color! I say it’s the best ongoing urban art execution and display I have ever experienced, since my early days during the NYC graffiti heydays!
I’m guessing my neighborhood now boasts around 120-150 new murals and most pieces within a 5 x 20 block radius. Just imagine, turning a corner to stumble onto dozens of artists painting away all during the warm Miami sun while most of the rest of the world is shivering into a new winter. Then turning the next corner to find dozens more and then the next and so on and so on. It doesn’t happen anywhere else in the world at this scale, annually.
I hope that the rising real estate prices don’t chip away at the heart of this scene, because I already have seen valuable paintable wall real estate give way to new window and glass as Wynwood begins its inevitable transformation into a Williamsburg trendiness. I hope the new tenants don’t ever shun the urban arts as I have seen happen from coast to coast in many other cities.
Miami has embraced these arts that I have my roots in and for that I will always be lovingly grateful as I am eternally grateful to a now no longer existent NYC that my graffiti roots were born and honed. I hope that Wynwood keeps this amazing tradition and grows and nurtures it as the pricey years begin rolling in. If it cannot sustain this I can only say this, I have been privileged to have experienced this amazing mass of talents that adorn Wynwood and I so hope that I don’t become one of those guys that speaks darkly about the present only recalling the “back in the day” times as I sometimes catch myself doing about my LES, Williamburg and LA!