Miami Wynwood Arts District - The Party vs The Art

In Miami’s Wynwood district, the party has overtaken the art - Miami-Dade - "Pan American Art Projects Director Janda Wetherington, . . . Open since 2006 at 2450 NW Second Ave., in Miami, the gallery preceeded the current street art scene, nightclubs and restaurants that have come into the popular district. The added foot and car traffic are not necessarily a good thing for the art institutions, Wetherington says. Second Saturdays Art Walks have "become a complete carnival, a detriment to us because some of our serious collectors won't come here with all the chaos," Wetherington said. "It's almost like the street art has taken over.". . . Fredric Snitzer, one of the few Miami gallerists invited to exhibit at Art Basel Miami Beach, says he doesn’t even bother to open on Second Saturdays any more. He is also pessimistic about the future of Wynwood as a thriving art district, even though he was one of the area’s pioneers (his gallery opened in 1977). “I don’t know what is going to happen here,” he says. “One of the initial aspirations I had for the neighborhood is that there were so many beautiful kinds of raw spaces that perhaps serious galleries from out-of-town would come in and there would be a Chelsea or SoHo feel — a cluster of galleries showing solid work. . . . Susan P. Kelley, director of the Kelley Roy Gallery, says that because her gallery is not located on NW Second Avenue — ground zero for the Second Saturday parties — she has been spared a lot of the chaos. “We don’t get the herds; we get to cultivate our audience to come to us,” she says. “But the tide has shifted dramatically. We used to serve wine, and we stopped that two years ago because kids would come in, pick up the glasses of wine and leave. . . ."

‘What’s Next for the Wynwood Art Galleries?’ will be held Tuesday, January 8 at Books & Books, 265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables. A panel discussion and Q&A begins at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, but a $10 donation to support ARTtuesdays/MIAMI is suggested. RSVP to

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