See highlights from the 2015 META Series below.
META presents cultural programming that explores transformative art of the African diaspora, featuring local and international artists of various disciplines including dance, visual arts, music, video and film.
META is a monthly series at OLCDC's newly opened facility, The ARC, in which artists who transform and reimagine their respective fields through innovative techniques and practices will engage the Opa-locka and South Florida communities, highlighting the role of the arts in community development.
META will culminate with OLCDC's eagerly anticipated annual Art of Transformation during November and early December, overlapping with Art Basel Miami Beach/Miami Art Week.
META Curator Ludlow Bailey
Ludlow Bailey is the Managing Director of CADA, a multi-media platform designed to present and promote the visual art culture of the African Diaspora; the curator of Global African Diaspora Culture; and Managing Director of G&A International Consultants, Inc. Mr. Bailey is a globalist whose passion is world art and culture. He believes that Contemporary Africana Culture (music, dance, art and film) represents some of the world's most spirited, esthetic and inspiring popular culture. Mr. Bailey has attended many of the world's leading art fairs and museums and is very informed about the art markets in London, New York, Paris, Johannesburg, Chicago, Berlin and Miami.
Ludlow has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from Brown University, where he was awarded a Watson Fellowship which allowed him to study Contemporary African Philosophy at the University of Ghana, the University of Dakar and the American University in Cairo. As a Brown undergraduate, Mr. Bailey spent his junior year at the American Classical School in Rome, studying Etruscan Art, High Renaissance Italian Art and Architecture. He earned his Master's degree in International Affairs from Columbia University.
"Beautiful Decay" is an architectural exploration into the viability of current methods of habitation. Both real and speculative, the selected projects explore sceneries and scenarios that tackle the issues facing our ever-changing landscape. Featuring 10 architects and designers from around the country, the exhibition is curated by Germane Barnes, OLCDC Designer-in-Residence and Lecturer at the University of Miami School of Architecture.
"Islas: Contemporary Caribbean Visions" is a photographic exhibition in honor of Caribbean Heritage Month, featuring the work of eight artists of Caribbean descent: Albert Chong (Jamaica), Boriquah Afrikanah (Puerto Rico and St. Croix), Carl Juste (Haiti), Emekan Afamefuna (Jamaica), Hakim Mutlaq (Trinidad), Jorge Sanchez (Cuba), Kerry Coppin (Barbados and the British Virgin Islands), Stuart Brown (Jamaica) and Tom Lopez (Cuba).
Miami North Arts & Humanities Foundation, Inc., The Museum Working Group, and Opa-locka Community Development Corporation held a community meeting to share information about plans to build The Museum of Contemporary Art of the African Diaspora in our community. Attendees' questions and comments were thoughtful and reflected a thirst for art and art educational programming in the Northwest Miami-Dade community. A number of elected officials attended, including State Representative Sharon Pridgett; former Miami-Dade Commissioner Betty T. Ferguson; Opa-locka Commissioner Terence Pinder; former Miami Gardens Councilman Melvin Bratton; Miami Gardens Councilman Erhabor Ighodaro, and a representative from the office of Miami-Dade County Commission Chairman Jean Monestime.
Presenters included Dr. Willie Logan, President & CEO, Opa-locka Community Development Corporation; Malou Harrison, President, Miami-Dade College North Campus; Michelle Johnson, Program Coordinator, Concerned African Women; Hans Ottinot, Esq. (first City Attorney of Miami Gardens), Sheldon Anderson, Northern Trust Bank; Robert Portnoff, The Paratus Group; and Marilyn Holifield, Esq., Holland & Knight LLP.
Life Is Art, Soul Of Miami, Buskerfest and OLCDC presented the River Of Art + Taste of Opa-locka, featuring ten amazing local artists, a showcase of hot local bands and performers, and tastings by several Opa-locka restaurants. The event exposed new artists, introduced new people to art appreciation, provided an inspiring space to make new connections, and showcased local businesses, while providing a fun break during the work week.
"Endurance" is a film and visual narrative celebrating Haiti's remarkable contribution to humanity, with South Florida artists Guy Syllien, Asser Saint-Val, James Brutus and Nzingah Oniwosan and film makers Dudley Alexis and Jason Fitzroy Jeffers.
Sud Swap is a monthly craft beer and art event presented by the Miami Beer Tour. The June 6 Swap @ the ARC featured breweries, food trucks, arts and craft vendors, and DJs!
"The Third Eye" is a selection of art by five artists of African descent: Asser Saint-Val, T. Eliott Mansa, Loni Johnson, Juana Valdes and Robert McKnight. The most important goal of this exhibition was to stimulate new ideas/dreams that may transform individuals, communities and the status quo.
The third eye is considered "the seat of the soul." Many believe the third eye is the pineal gland which exists in the center of the brain. Ancient Egyptians (a.k.a, the people of Kemet) based the foundation of their spirituality upon the belief in the pursuit of awakening the third eye.
Most of the artists in this show have had a long-term interest in the pineal gland as it relates to Kemetic Spirituality and melanin. The exhibition exposed multi-dimensional themes of melanin, melatonin and the pineal gland.
The exhibition also focused on themes of transcendence: the awakening of the third eye; the pursuit of self knowledge; and the visualization of trans-dimensional experiences. Scientists know that all such transcendent experiences are caused by specific colors (art) and sounds (music) which stimulate the pineal gland that triggers the secretion of melatonin (the hormone that enables us to dream at night).
The Opa-locka Community Development Corporation (OLCDC) hosted Opa-locka's first Community Paint Day to transform Ali Baba Avenue into a large-scale, temporary public artwork. OLCDC commissioned noted artist/architect Walter Hood to reimagine the 2.1-long mile main thoroughfare as an artistic corridor and partnered with Miami Rise (a team from the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Miami Program) to organize the first paint day with 200 volunteers. This project has created a visual marker and increased civic engagement to signal that change is happening in Opa-locka, while highlighting opportunities for long term infrastructure improvements to enhance pedestrian and cycling access.
Read the Miami Herald's "Paint gives hope to Opa-locka's Ali Baba Avenue."
Read the Miami New Time's "Public Art Paints a New Face on Opa-locka's Buildings."
This multimedia art exhibit, featuring artists Elaine Defibaugh, Sheila Elias, Judy Sayfie, and Hattie Mae Williams, presented a visual feast full of color, fantasy, creative power and energy.
Read Miami Herald exhibit coverage.
This one-day film festival, presented by Florida International University Honors College Third World Cinema class and OLCDC, explored cinema's stylish film noir and neo-noir genres in the developing world. Film noir from the 1930s-1950s is characterized by stark, angular shadows; conflicted anti-heroes; chiaroscuro lighting; determined, beautiful, scheming women; obscured scenes; and isolation in modern cities. Neo-noir addresses philosophical questions about the essence of human nature, guilt, redemption, and problems of knowledge, memory and identity, while blurring the lines between right and wrong, good and evil. Two films per genre were screened to introduce and expose the art of stylized filmmaking and foreign films in Opa-locka.