Art Walk – Its a ‘Real Thing’ in Wynwood

Go Lean Commentary

Forget the theory, this is real …

… the arts are empowering the economy in the Miami District of Wynwood. This can be measured … by “boots on the ground” and in dollars and cents.

Though we have been reporting that “the community rallies around the arts creating a unique energy; and art ‘dynamises’ the community, in a very unique way”, this was hard to visualize in practice. And then … we made a visit to Wynwood during Art Basel Art Week 2016 and wow! We felt the energy; see here in the following VIDEO:

VIDEO – CU Blog – Art Walk – It’s a Real Thing in Wynwood –

Published on Dec 4, 2016 – Art Week 2016: “The community rallies around the arts creating a unique energy; and art ‘dynamises’ the community, in a very unique way”.

This commentary completes the 3-part series on the power of the visual arts. The series depicts how the arts can forge change in a community, where it can be an effective messaging tool to convey many important points. In the Caribbean, we need the type of transformation that can come from this power. The full entries in the series are as follows:

  1.  Forging Change: Arts & Artists
  2.  ENCORE: Art Basel 2016 – A Testament to the Business of the Arts
  3.  Art Walk – Its a Real Thing in Wynwood

This commentary goes further, conveying that there is also a good business model in the arts. This blog considers the model of a Miami-based company, branded They promote the arts in this one district, and transact in the aligning tourism trade:

Website Title: Wynwood Art Walk

cu-blog-art-walk-its-a-real-thing-in-wynwood-photo-1“Wynwood Art Walk” is a tour company providing art tours in the Wynwood Art District. We advertise tours for groups but also provide customized private tours per request. Furthermore, we seek to support the Wynwood art community through our art directory and through banner advertisement space, our blog, and our community page. has also an online directory showcasing art institutions operating within Wynwood. Wynwood is a section of Miami just north of Downtown, south of the Design District, east of I-95, and west of Biscayne Boulevard. There are currently over 60 art galleries, art complexes and art collection in Wynwood. Wynwood Art Guide provides advertising to institutions that exhibit/promote contemporary visual art (paintings, sculptures, installations, photography, multimedia, ceramics, etc.) in Wynwood. Advertising is available through the use of banners. Companies servicing the arts (eg. art dealers, framing companies, art supply sellers, etc.) are welcome to advertise through the use of banners exclusively.
General Area

The main area of the Wynwood Art Walk is between 20 St & 36 St and from NW 2nd Ave to NE 2nd Ave. Prime hours are between 7pm and 11pm. Parking is best before 7pm.

The food trucks are located in a field on the corner of NW 23 St & NW 2nd Ave. Great food and drinks!
Wynwood – originally spelled Wyndwood – is an old inner city neighborhood of Miami surrounded by Edgewater, Overtown, Liberty City… Wynwood was built as a working class residential neighborhood, connected to the Garment District just south of it. It attracted manufacturers from New York and elsewhere and retained some jobs, fueled by immigrant labor, but struggled against competition from cheap labor overseas. According to a different source, in the fifties, it was a white neighborhood of professionals, but a remembrance on History Miami’s website indicates that Cuban immigrants were moving into the neighborhood in the early sixties.
Source: Tour Company Website – Retrieved 12-03-2016 from:

This commentary – from the publishers of the book Go Lean … Caribbean – is trying to forge change in the Caribbean region and advocate that the arts can be a great tool-tactic for societal elevation. As previously related “…there’s a transformative power to the arts”.

This commentary is urging Caribbean stakeholders to explore the production of artists and the effect their art can have on society. Considering that tourism is the primary industry in the entire Caribbean, there are a lot of benefits to examining the business model of the Wynwood Art District. Imagine an array of murals in Caribbean port cities – for our Cruise tourism. Imagine too, the “Walking Tours”, Art Galleries and Art Sales. Notice the manifestation of this plan in the photos here from the Art Walk (Tour) in Wynwood:

cu-blog-art-walk-its-a-real-thing-in-wynwood-photo-2  cu-blog-art-walk-its-a-real-thing-in-wynwood-photo-3

cu-blog-art-walk-its-a-real-thing-in-wynwood-photo-4  cu-blog-art-walk-its-a-real-thing-in-wynwood-photo-5






Feel the energy! Excitement enough?

Local media has often reported on the huge economic impact of Art Basel and Wynwood; see the links here to full stories: Basel has been great for Miami, CEOs agree (Miami Herald Newspaper; November 20, 2015). Capital turns huge profit on $13M sale in Miami’s Wynwood (South Florida Business Journal; Jun 22, 2015). – Culture Trip Web Portal (Retrieved Dec 4, 2016).

Count the profits! Commerce enough?

This commentary confirms that there is energy and money in the visual arts, whether it is murals or graffiti, (commissioned street art). While the messaging of the visual arts can be impactful, visual expressions can depict imagery and tales – fact or fiction; artists often “use fiction to tell the truth” – the business elements of the arts can be even more impactful. The Go Lean book serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the technocratic Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU). The CU is set to elevate Caribbean society through empowerments for the economic, security and governing engines in society. Therefore the Go Lean roadmap has these 3 prime directives:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy to $800 Billion & create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to ensure public safety and protect the economic engines.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines.

The Go Lean book posits that the genius qualifier to excel in the arts should be identified early in Caribbean youth and then their development should be fostered up to adulthood. The book thereafter details the mechanics of incubating a business climate for this and all areas of culture. This quest is detailed as an advocacy in the book (Page 230) as:

10 Ways to Improve the Arts

1. Emergence of the Caribbean Union Embrace the advent of the CariCom Single Market Initiative and the Caribbean Union Trade Federation. This will allow for the unification of the region into a single market of 42 million people. This size supports the proliferation of ‘art’ (visual/fine, music, performance & film) as an industry. The CU will promote the art exhibition eco-system – allowing marketplaces for artists to congregate and monetize their talents. Structures will also be deployed for media companies to monetize film & performance art. The CU will facilitate the marketing of travelling exhibitions, and touring companies of stage productions. For the region, art can be a business enabler, and expressions for civic pride and national identity.
2. CU Administered Museums Modeled after the Smithsonian, the CU “mother” (first-tier) museums will be placed in the Capital District. There will also be “child” museums scattered through out the regions with touring exhibitions.
3. Art, Music & Film Festival Tourism CU promoted events, utilizing the CU-owned fairgrounds, to encourage the development and advancement in artistic expressions. These events will be aimed at the foreign markets (US, Canada, Europe, Central and South America) so as to generate tourism traffic. The artists may be domestic but also foreign and world class performers. (Event examples include New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Art Deco in Miami, Cannes Film Festival, and Taos, New Mexico).
4. Fairgrounds as Arena and Theater Districts The CU Fairgrounds will fund, build and maintain civic arenas and theaters in local market Enterprise Zones. The designated areas fomented under the CU will qualify for tax (sales, property and income tax rebates) and economic incentives (low interest loans and grants) and stimuli (advertising and event promotions), empowering event tourism.
5. Electronic Payment Models The CU Central Bank will arrange for settlement of electronic payments transactions allowing electronic commerce to flourish in the region. Then music, film and other media can be paid for and downloaded legally from the internet.
6. Respect for Intellectual Property Any institutional disregard for the intellectual property of books, music, films and media will be severely prosecuted. The CU will also recognized and enforce the copyrights of other countries and work to have international markets respects the intellectual property rights of Caribbean artists. (This is a feature the of the Trade SHIELD principles defined in Appendix D (Page 264)). This effort requires close collaboration with criminal (Interpol) and civic enforcement agencies (ASCAP/BMI, MPAA). The end result would be that local/regional artists can make a “living” from their recorded works.
7. Art in Public Places The CU will spur initiatives to incentivize and directly commission artist to exhibit their creations (paintings, murals, sculptures, etc.) in public edifices. This will encourage national-state public-private deployments of themed sculptures like Bahamian Conch Shells, Barbados Flying Fish and Puerto Rico Tree Frogs. These can be modeled after US city examples, like “Painted” Bulls in Chicago, Mustangs in Denver, and Guitars in Nashville.
8. Performing & Fine Arts Schools A hybrid “Charter” school concept promotes the development and advancement in specific performing and fine arts while not forsaking the basic educational requirements. Similar to the secondary school (NYC Performing Arts) featured in the movie “Fame”. On the tertiary level, the CU will provide scholarships and endowments for programs in the Arts.
9. Agency for Public Broadcasting and National Touring Companies These public-private agencies will be chartered to produce and promote world class artistic companies (adult and youth) for Opera, Ballet, Modern Dance, Symphonic and Philharmonic Orchestras, despite whether they are popular or highly rated. The Arts must always be promoted as a necessary expression of a civilized society, despite profit or public acceptance. Likewise, a CU agency for Public Broadcasting will manage the region’s media efforts to bring world class art to the people, (with SAP-style options for all four languages) without considering popularity.
10. Professional Agents and Artists Management Oversight The CU will regulate, at the Cabinet level, and license the industry of Artists Agents/Managers, even though the artists can elect their own Agents & Managers. This management oversight is to be modeled after State Bars for lawyers. (This model is used for Sports Agents also).

While the Go Lean book relates (Page 291) the historicity of the pro-artist community in Taos, New Mexico, we now see a similar local model in Miami’s Wynwood District – a location with more Caribbean infusion. This Wynwood experience in particular and Art Basel Art Week in general is reinforcing that “art can drive” the economics, security and governance of a community.

While not everyone will be gifted artists, everyone can benefit from the accentuation of the arts and artists. So we should all work to make our homeland a better place to live, work and play by fostering the genius ability in Caribbean citizens. This is presented in the book as a “community ethos”:

“the fundamental character or spirit of a culture; the underlying sentiment that informs the beliefs, customs, or practices of a society; dominant assumptions of a people”. – (Page 20)

The Go Lean book presented the roadmap to imbrue the Caribbean region with new community ethos, plus new strategies, tactics, implementation and advocacies to foster the business climate for the arts. The following is a sample of these specific details from the book:

Community Ethos – Deferred Gratification Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – People Choose Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – People Respond to Incentives in Predictable Ways Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – Economic Systems Influence Individual Choices Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – The Consequences of Choices Lie in the Future Page 21
Community Ethos – Governing Principles – Minority Equalization Page 23
Community Ethos – Governing Principles – Lean Operations Page 24
Community Ethos – Governing Principles – Cooperatives Page 25
Community Ethos – Ways to Foster Genius Page 27
Community Ethos – Ways to Help Entrepreneurship Page 28
Community Ethos – Ways to Promote Intellectual Property Page 29
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact Turn-Arounds – Covering Urban Decay with Art Page 33
Community Ethos – Ways to Promote Happiness Page 36
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact the Greater Good Page 37
Strategy – Vision – Confederate 30 Member-States Page 45
Strategy – Mission – Celebrate the Music, Sports, Art and Culture of the Caribbean Page 46
Tactical – Confederating a Permanent Union Page 63
Tactical – Fostering a Technocracy Page 64
Tactical – Separation-of-Powers – CU Federal Agencies versus Member-State Governments Page 71
Implementation – Ways to Pay for Change Page 101
Implementation – Ways to Deliver Page 109
Implementation – National/Federal Museum in the Capital District Page 110
Planning – 10 Big Ideas for the Caribbean Region Page 127
Planning – Ways to Make the Caribbean Better Page 131
Advocacy – Ways to Grow the Economy Page 151
Advocacy – Ways to Create Jobs Page 152
Advocacy – Ways to Enhance Tourism Page 190
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Events Page 191
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Cruise Tourism Page 193
Advocacy – Ways to Preserve Caribbean Heritage – The business of fostering local culture Page 218
Advocacy – Ways to Improve the Arts Page 230
Advocacy – Ways to Promote Music Page 231
Appendix D – Trade SHIELD Principles Page 264
Appendix M – Taos Art Colony – New Mexico‘s Landmark Page 291
Appendix W – Mediating as French Culture and Economics Collide Page 311

The empowerments in the Go Lean book calls for the elevation of the arts as a permanent change. We want our youth to put their hopes and dreams in a Caribbean future, especially our youth who prove to be gifted in the arts. From the outset, the book recognized the significance of successfully fostering the arts with these statements in the opening Declaration of Interdependence (Page 12 & 14):

xxi.  Whereas the preparation of our labor force can foster opportunities and dictate economic progress for current and future generations, the Federation must ensure that educational and job training opportunities are fully optimized for all residents of all member-states, with no partiality towards any gender or ethnic group. The Federation must recognize and facilitate excellence in many different fields of endeavor, including sciences, languages, arts, music and sports. This responsibility should be executed without incurring the risks of further human flight, as has been the past history.

xxxii. Whereas the cultural arts and music of the region are germane to the quality of Caribbean life, and the international appreciation of Caribbean life, the Federation must implement the support systems to teach, encourage, incentivize, monetize and promote the related industries for arts and music in domestic and foreign markets. These endeavors will make the Caribbean a better place to live, work and play.

The Go Lean roadmap seeks to foster the eco-system for the business of the arts. This quest has been addressed in many previous Go Lean commentaries; see sample here: The New Smithsonian African-American Museum The African Renaissance Monument in Dakar, Senegal, Africa Art Basel Miami – a Testament to the Spread of Art & Culture How ‘The Lion King’ roared into Show-Business history

We can do our own “Wynwood” in the Caribbean. We have the artists and the talent waiting to be fostered. Let’s develop the business environment locally to fully explore the opportunities from the arts – the region should commission artists to paint murals.

We can do this; we can forge change here at home. This Go Lean roadmap is conceivable, believable and achievable. We can make the Caribbean a better place to live, work and play. 🙂

Download the book Go Lean … Caribbean – now!

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