Drink, Dance, and Watch the Creation of Art at Treehouse

To outsiders, art has long been shrouded in mystery. How does the artist go from a blank canvas to an image of beauty? Cultivate, a new night held the second Thursday of every month at Treehouse attempts to illuminate this process. To the soundtrack of independent dance music and to the flavor of their favorite adult beverage, guests can watch an artist conceive and create a piece of art on a five foot by five foot piece of canvas.

"It's an intimate setting that allows people to interact with an artist and their work," said Hector Garcia, one of the organizers of the night. "Last month Loic Ercolessi who does iconography did a flood black and white piece of the old rap group Run DMC over the course of the night. Each month the motifs of the art are going to change, but they'll mostly do with the hipster subculture."

This month's artist, David D. Defex, hails from Columbia, but has lived in Miami since 2000. He knows his piece this Thursday will involve one of his TV Heads characters, but is leaving any other plans open until inspiration hits him, he said.

"That night I'll do something in the moment, but it will show TV Heads. The TV Heads show that people today are inspired by media in everything from what they eat to what they wear. I'm trying to show with my paintings you don't have to go that way. I have one with a 9 to 6 guy who works in the office for minimum wage who explodes."

Defex plans on Thursday to mix markers, acrylics with spray and figures the work will be finished in two to three hours. This is his second time his art has become a spectator sport.

"In Columbia I did a life-size mural on a wall for a publicity company that took about four hours while people were watching."

Cultivate hopes to break down the barrier between the artist and the aficionado. Allowing you to be present not only when the light bulb pops over the artist's head, but also as the paint dries under their fingernails.

Cultivate from 9 p.m. to midnight on Thursday, August 14, at Treehouse, 323 23rd St., this event is free. Call 305-510-6800 or visit

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