An Iconic Coconut Grove Structure Served as Inspiration for the 60th Anniversary Commemorative Poster of the Coconut Grove Arts Festival

January 20, 2024 (PRLEAP.COM) Entertainment News
To celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the Coconut Grove Arts Festival (CGAF), organizers commissioned Signe and Genna Grushovenko, a married duo from South Carolina, to design this year's commemorative poster, given their extensive collection of vintage artworks of bygone days and carefree ways. The poster was unveiled to an eager crowd on January 18 at CocoWalk Rooftop overlooking Coconut Grove, an affluent and the oldest continuously inhabited neighborhood of Miami.

CocoWalk, the popular community hub, hosted the unveiling and invited Botanico Gin & Cookhouse to add their touch of creativity with hors d'oeuvres atop the venue's idyllic rooftop overlooking the neighborhood, which was broadcast LIVE on NBC6 News. "We were honored to have the poster unveiling for the second consecutive year, reaffirming our dedication to contributing to the thriving arts scene within the Grove," said Wendy Seher, Executive Vice President Eastern Region President at Federal Realty Investment Trust. "The panoramic views from our rooftop served as a demonstration of our commitment to offering an engaging atmosphere for all of our community and private events. For us, it was a privilege to be a cultural hub and to nurture the spirit of the Grove."

The commemorative poster depicting the iconic Monty's Raw Bar was revealed by NBC6 news anchor Roxanne Vargas and the legendary Monty Trainer himself. It was promptly received by applause and excitement from the public.

Signe and Genna Grushovenko like to say they are partners in art and life. "We were honored to be given this historic task. Because we always tend to look back on "the good ole' days" with fondness. It was natural for us to take an image of the iconic Monty'sand give it our artistic perception, thereby allowing the viewer the ability to travel back in time," says Signe who expressed that this year's poster would remind people of a beloved relative, relationship, or memory of Coconut Grove.

Their work on this year's poster began with a brightly colored abstract canvas painted by Genna using techniques of pouring, striping with brushes, squeegee, and whatever else popped into his head at the time. Once Signe received his abstract, she used the image of Monty's in Coconut Grove as inspiration to create a figurative painting on top of his painting. "The resulting piece was a balance between abstract and figuration, full of eccentric color and pattern that pulses through from underneath," said Signe. As with all their work, the couple leaves any faces undefined in their works of art, thereby giving people the opportunity to bring their personal history to the table.

Camille Marchese, executive director for the festival explained what was behind the overall look for the 60th Anniversary. When she met with the marketing team at EngageLive!, she asked for a mid-century modern theme, characterized by clean lines, minimal decoration, and a connection to nature. Given that the origin of the festival was at the top of the MidMod, it was a natural fit. As such, the team at EngageLive! enjoyed taking on the challenge of developing this year's concept, creating the artwork that encapsulated sixty years of the Coconut Grove Arts Festival. "It was a truly synergistic effort, and I was excited by the overall look and the nostalgia that it evoked. In addition, the beauty of the Grove's cool, art deco style served as a great aesthetic fit for the theme and the mid-century of the Grushovenko's," added Marchese.

Ironically, the CGAF was one of the first fine art festivals the Grushovenkos participated in, somewhere around 2006. "We've had the honor of showing there approximately a dozen times. I remember feeling like we had won the lottery with that first acceptance," added Signe. "We're chaffing at the bit to get back to enjoy the show, the Grove, the arepas — our very favorite festival food, Miami, and all of the wonderful collectors we've been missing."

The Coconut Grove Arts Festival is slated for Presidents' Day Weekend on February 17, 18 and 19, 2024. General Admission and VIP Collector's Club tickets have already gone on sale. The 60th iteration of this highly frequented outdoor festival promises to display a diversity of styles, textures, media, colors, and cultures to fill the senses. According to Marchese, festivalgoers should expect that the art they'll see this year will be like nothing they've ever seen before.

Photo Captions:
Photo 1 - City of Miami Commissioner Damian Pardo, Monty Trainer, Tony Albelo, and Camille Marchese
Photo 2 - 2024 CGAF 60th Anniversary Commemorative Poster
Photo 3 - Camille Marchese, CGAF Executive Director
Photo 4 - Rooftop of CocoWalk during poster unveiling

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ABOUT CGAF:
The Coconut Grove Arts Festival is not just about art; it's also the social event of the year. Over 80,000 attendees from across the region pass through the gates of The Coconut Grove Arts Festival to experience one of the nation's top outdoor, fine-arts festivals that dates back to 1963. This iconic South Florida event presents 285 internationally recognized artists who were selected during a blind jury process based solely on artistic merit. The jury panel is comprised of art professionals from around the country. Original pieces are displayed in the following categories: mixed media, painting, photography, digital art, printmaking and drawing, watercolor, ceramics, glass, fiber, jewelry and metalwork, sculpture, and wood. It offers culinary experiences and has featured celebrity chefs including Giorgio Rapicavoli, Ralph Pagano, and Allen Susser. The festival has been honored to have some of the world's premier artists officially create the commemorative poster, including Romero Britto, Guy Harvey, Clyde Butcher, Benjamin Frey, Jacqueline Roch, Xavier Cortada, Rick Garcia, Lisa Remeny, and Alexander Mijares to name a few. The festival is operated by the 501(c)(3) Coconut Grove Arts & Historical Association and produced by EngageLive, LLC. Proceeds go towards funding year-round arts programs such as providing art supplies to a variety of schools and organizations, hosting a Visiting Artist Program with Miami-Dade County Schools, and our nationally recognized Emerging Artist Program. In addition, the festival awards over $70,000 in scholarships benefiting graduating seniors from local public magnet arts high schools and art students from Florida International University.

ABOUT COCOWALK:
The newly reimagined CocoWalk has reopened and is elevating Coconut Grove as Miami's top destination for those seeking unique retail, dining, and entertainment experiences. CocoWalk's ownership spearheaded the exciting redevelopment: The majority partner Federal Realty Investment Trust (NYSE: FRT), Comras Company, and Grass River Property, who together acquired the property in 2015 and invested in its extensive renovation. Today, CocoWalk features 150,000 square feet of prime retail space, including local, national, and international restaurants and retailers, including The Key Club, PLANTA Queen, Sushi Garage, Mister o1 Extraordinary Pizza, Botánico Gin & Cookhouse, Salt & Straw, Sweetgreen, Narbona Restaurant & Farm Market, Eva & the Oyster Bar, El Bagel, Bluemercury, Edward Beiner, Edite Mode, FP Movement, Glosslab, Skinlab Miami, Gas Bijoux, Europann-USA, Coco Cigars, The Spot Barbershop, and The School of Rock. The movie theater, Cinepolis Luxury Cinemas, has also reopened at the property. As part of the renovation, the ownership group also developed One CocoWalk, a five-story, 85,745-square-foot office building now open on the property's east side with a rooftop available for private events. Through this major redevelopment, CocoWalk has reclaimed its role as the Grove's geographical and commercial centerpiece. For more details, please email Blawrence@grassrivergmt.com.

ABOUT BOTANICO GIN & COOKHOUSE:
Botánico Gin & Cookhouse features contemporary fusion cuisine, a full bar, and a special focus on gin cocktails with exciting botanicals mixed in. Gin is seeing a major resurgence around the world and Botánico is the first restaurant in Miami to fully embrace this trend. You will enjoy a refreshing G&T with views of over 150 gins on display, plus a state-of-the-art wine cellar with the largest wine selection in Coconut Grove. The family-style menu is designed to have something for everyone, from goat cheese dip to a French Burger, to grilled ribeye; plus, a wonderful selection of locally baked delicacies, such as a mixed-berry Pavlova, Baklava cheesecake, and Fookhem's exclusive Botánico Key Lime Pie. Our dynamic menu includes our new additions, burrata and heirloom tomatoes, pesto-parmesan flatbread, shrimp, and fish baja tacos, and incredible new burgers - arugula, blue cheese and bacon burger, and the amazing BBQ burger, including homemade BBQ glaze, onion rings, and thick cut bacon.

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