A Miami based contemporary art newsletter / blog

Introducing HOTBED Miami 2010

The HOTBED Booth as it is now. Photo courtesy Bill Bilowit, Director of Wet Heat Project.

Within 6 weeks, conceive, create and present a site-specific performative installation that will engage visitors to Fountain Miami 2010 and represent the artistic merit of Miami. Absorb input and feedback of mentor artists and art professionals. Plan to install, present and strike within one of the four calendar show days of the fair. Work with your fellow artists to decide the best order of exhibition.

This was the direction given to four next generation artists of diverse disciplines and backgrounds in preparation for this year’s fair week by Wet Heat Project director Bill Bilowit and producer by Grela Orihuela who after tirelessly recording a broad base of Miami arts in multiple visual media formats for over a year, a dedication that has given rise to an expanding catalog of films, are going gonzo, actively facilitating an event of their own and concurrently shooting footage of the process for a documentary film sponsored by LMNT / Gino Tozzi.

In keeping with Wet Heat’s ‘humid branding’ and local penchant for sticky, geographically specific names – Sweat Records, Swamp Space etc – the title of the event/film, HOTBED MIAMI 2010, encapsulates Miami’s climate both in terms of its temperature and booming arts community, harking the economical definition of a situation conducive to rapid growth or development.

For HOTBED Miami 2010 four senior-level students – above from left to right: sleeper, Limchoy Lee, Jose Felix Perez and Jessica Laino  – from the New World School of the Arts, a creative educational institution in Downtown Miami that has spawned many of South Florida’s recognized young artists, were selected to produce work for exhibition at Fountain Miami 2010, a pioneering fair in the heart of the Wynwood Arts District that describes itself as “the installation-based exhibition of avant-garde galleries.”

To launch pre-production, a special 3-hour Mentor Artist Workshop was conducted at the de la Cruz Collection on November 5th, sponsored by New World School of the Arts. Here the four students presented their ideas in a critique format to an equal number of mentors – above from left to right: video and performance artist Maria José Arjona; sculptor and Artlurker contributor Richard Haden; sculptor and NWSA alumni Jen Stark and installation artist, publisher and Artlurker Miami Writer’s Prize 2010 judge Gean Moreno  – who challenged them to express their ideas with clarity and to invest their developing work with relevance, visual accomplishment and depth.

Underpinning the project, a happy, circumstantial development of making a group of films for an upcoming series about Miami art students on entitled “Why me?”, are two key objectives: to demonstrate the HOTBED effect with innovative, spirited and relevant voices of a next generation of this city’s artists from among the enthusiastic students of Miami art schools and university curriculum and to encourage and model within Miami’s wide diversity of art students a strong and clear focus on making ideas work, making work accomplished, and engaging the viewer, through the realization of purely ephemeral work[.]

For more information please refer to an article that will publish soon in The Miami New Times, and check back here after Basel for a more in depth appraisal of the project.

The first of the HOTBED Miami 2010 exhibitors, Limchoy Lee will present at Fountain Fair on Thursday 2nd December from noon until 6 pm. Subsequent schedule is as follows: Jessica Laino, Friday 3rd December, 11am – Midnight; sleeper, Saturday 4th, 11am – Midnight and Jose Felix Perez, Sunday 5th, 11am – 7pm.

HOTBED Miami 2010 is sponsored in part by Miami-based advertising agency Alma DDB.

For more information on the HOTBED Miami 2010 process including project proposals, dictations of the critique at de la Cruz collection and a live webcam from the Fountain Fair booth please visit and

For more information on Fountain Art Fair please visit

For more information on Bill Bilowit and Grela Orihuela go to For images, quotes, video clips and information, or to request media interviews or materials for screenings at art and educational venues please contact Grela Orihuela at contact (at) wetheatproject (dot) com or telephone (786) 253-9253.

To view the catalog of short films please visit Longform documentary films on DVD homevideo such as the “miamiHeights” series (with episodes on Hernan Bas and Bert Rodriguez) are distributed by participating art museums, collections and online.

This post was contributed by Thomas Hollingworth.


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Introducing HOTBED Miami 2010