Artlit: A Day of Heroes

Published on January 2nd, 2019

With the rich and diverse set of cultures that make up South Florida, art always finds a way to flourish here no matter the literal, political or social climate. A case in point: Artlit, a free, all-ages Saturday of DIY art-making, live music, virtual reality demonstrations and other interactive fun on the campus of the Pompano Beach Cultural Center and Library.

Highlights include a live paint-off with Pompano artists CHNK and Marcos Conde in friendly competition with peers from Miami (Sona and TeePOP), West Palm Beach (Liz Wizewood) and elsewhere in the region. The finished works will be raffled off. Artlit attendees also get to watch street painter and chalk artist Jennifer Chaparro bring her uncannily 3D-looking creations to life with just the sidewalk as her canvas.

This edition of Artlit, subtitled A Day of Heroes, also coincides with birthday festivities for the Broward County Library branch that opened in January 2018 inside the $19.8 million Cultural Center — a 47,000-square-foot, city jewel of arts complex that turns two in May. Artlit’s parent organization, the local artists group ShangriLa Collective, is working with city and county cultural development officials to make the occasion a celebration of local artistic and literary life and, along the way, promote community bonding.

“It’s about leaving a lasting impression on everyone we meet and have the pleasure of working with in this city,” artist Kelcie McQuaid, ShangriLa’s co-founder and creative director, tells PureHoney. “It’s about leading by example and connecting our current leadership to the core of our community, while executing great events that will inspire and motivate locals to get more involved in the arts.”

Artlit is also a testament to Pompano Beach’s growing reputation in arts circles as a base for a number of up-and-coming talents and visionaries who are, in turn, helping the city stake a claim to South Florida’s cultural mojo. The more instant reward will be the “playful explosion” of participatory fun that Artlit organizers are promising as they do their part to lift our spirits and add color to our surroundings.

Artlit: A Day of Heroes runs noon-10 pm January 19 at the Pompano Beach Cultural Center and Library. Admission is free. ~ Freddie Zandt

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