If December is a perfect storm of tourist money, then November's Wynwood Art Walk was a busy, local scene. A bustling NW Second Avenue hosted thousands of pairs of feet tromping through the city, spending dollars, and soaking up the creative atmosphere. The streets were a canvas for manic expression, and excitement thundered through the night. Here are a few shows we checked out.
Outside of Jude Papaloko's Jakmel Gallery, a house DJ played sidewalk shaking bangers. Inside, Papaloko said it was because "I don't like to eat by myself. I like to share the spot with everybody. One love."
Of the piece above, he says, "This is Toussaint, the liberator of Haiti, the mastermind of the Haitian revolution."
Wilfrid Daleus, of Daleus Museum and Art Gallery in North Miami, showed off his 3d painting of the back of a woman's head. "In my country, we celebrate the woman's hair. But this woman doesn't have enough, so you can see she is going bald."
Papaloko explains that he paints "African beings, the underworld, cemeteries, Guedes, and Goddesses of the ocean, Earth, and moon." The one below is the Goddess of The Earth.
Down the street, Willy Roni's photos from Paris offered tack sharp and focused portraits of the people and culture of the city of lights.
Here, a French guy with an awesome face drinks wine.
And this photo of a parking lot is awesomely lit, composed, and full of cool autos.
Meanwhile at Hester's, a show of large scale, digitally manipulated architectural photography, people oohed and aahed at the perspective shifts and tricks.
Back on the street, these baseball card sized grandmas appeared along the Ave in different schemes.
And the local hero series keeps its mission alive.
Lunch Box Gallery offered a show of iPhoneagraphy by Jaime Ferreyros.
Gallery owner Rodolfo Van Marcke's work appears in the back room. This piece, entitled "Save Me," depicts a single capsule floating in the middle of a reflective surface.
It's from a series about "Everything in the contemporary world that becomes normal over time, but really isn't, and how it's inescapable. The pill is from my own prescription of Valsarfan, a blood pressure medication. When you look at the work, because it's like a mirror, you also see yourself."
Plan Beats and their dancing, freestyle, record spinning block party, invited anybody from the crowd to show off their talents.
Painter Susan Kaufman said "My work is very sensual. It's about women and power, and all the emotions and feelings that Goddesses experience and desire. It's about the human figure, color, form, and beautiful bodies. This is how I feel."
Harold Golen's gallery showed the work of Blake Fisher, a fashion photographer who took pictures of naked girls in natural surroundings.
Golen says, "One of his models is a dancer from the Cirque De Soleil who did these really unusual poses."
The Gregg Sheinbaum gallery showed off works by Warhol, Stinkfish, Clandestine Culture, Gustavo Oviedo, Space Invader and more. Very cool to see local street art right next to high end and blue chip work from around the world.
At The Hangar, a community based arts initiative and gallery, locals got their shine on too.
Founder and director Allyson Parker said, "We rotate about 35 artists, and we're a resource center for emerging artists. We have Think Tank Saturdays with different themes like painting or photography and people come here to network and make plans. We're a cool local arts initiative giving everyone a platform to utilize their voices. We offer memberships for wall space during art openings, and we're excited for Basel."
"One of our members, Charles Leano, just won the Raw Awards number one artist in the Southeast. That's a national organization. He's shipping out to LA to go compete in the nationals."
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And with that, we left the art walk, satisfied with a strong local turnout bolstered by great work that will inspire more of the same.