| Culture |

RAW's Miami Launch: Body Painting, Stage Rocking, and Paint Flinging (Photos)

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Last night wasn't exactly an ideal night for RAW to make its Miami debut. Aside from being a weekday, and the drenching rains hours earlier, this was the same night the Miami Heat faced the New York Knicks in the playoffs at the American Airlines Arena.

Yet in spite of the obstacles, plenty of people flocked to The Stage in the Design District to witness RAW's first Blend night in Miami. As we explained earlier this week, RAW's mission is to promote artists of all genres at the same time, often at club-like events.

On this particular night, fine art paintings hung on the walls; gobs of paint were spread on models; and an abstract painting was created to the thrashings of an alternative punk band from Cuba. Fashion bloggers were being transformed into models, while a jewelry maker posed for photos with friends. Bartenders sold drinks ranging from $4 to $12, while a food truck prepared tasty treats.

The mistress of ceremonies was a model-turned-event

planner-turned-hostess who called herself Graciep0o, much to the

confusion of even her local colleagues at RAW. We asked her why she

called herself Graciep0o when her parents gave her the perfectly

non-ridiculous name of Grace Munoz. She explained it sprouted from an

incident in high school. A teacher asked her if she could call her

Gracie. "No," Grace replied. "Oh poo!" pouted the teacher. "Well, you

can call me Gracie Poo," the young Grace replied.

Oh, and it was Graciep0o's 25th birthday. Happy Birthday, Gracie. Please get a new name. You're an adult now.


the Heat trounced the Knicks that night, allowing Miami's team to

advance to the NBA semi-finals. But in the end, those who watched the

Heat's victory only saw a basketball game. Those of us who went to the

Stage that night saw some decent art work, listened to good rock music,

ate tasty food prepared by Los Chamos, and tripped over various

spotlights that were randomly placed around the club. (OK, we were the ones tripping over

the spotlights, but at least we didn't injure any body paint models as we fell.)

Check out our photos of the entertaining sensory overload provided

by the Blend below.

To learn more about RAW and how it spread from Los Angeles to the

rest of the world, log on to rawartists.org. To find out more about

the artists who appeared at The Stage, log on to www.rawartists.org/miami/theblend.

--Erik Bojnansky

Follow Cultist on Facebook and Twitter @CultistMiami.

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