Apr 23, 2016

What is Young Artist Initiative?

“Miami’s avant-garde collective of young artists has made it their mission to contribute a unique substance to the landscape of culture and art.”

The cultural virus that has infected the city of Miami in the past decade has led to the rise of art-driven concepts and has drawn the attention of designers, architects, and overall creators from all corners of our globe, whose presence has helped in the development and enrichment of Miami’s cultural personality.

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The Young Artist Initiative aims to celebrate and encourage this creative spirit by instilling “Renaissance” as the conceptual base of its next installation. All participating artists have been presented with the challenge of addressing the cultural rebirth occurring in the city of Miami and consider its effects and ramifications on the identity of our city. Their performances and installations will exist as reflections of their individual interpretations on the matter, expressed through each of their iconic aesthetics and methodologies.

This event is run by the team at Young Artist Initiative including our very own Sharit Ben-Asher, fellow 4th-year archie from FIU SOA, as the event architect.

Last event, Sharit used recycled plastic bottles to create a mesmerizing and interactive installation using the limbs of the tree for support. It encouraged the recycling of used drink bottles throughout the event with 3D printed tin cans and organic seating.

Featuring a few fellow archies who will be creating artwork and installations for the event:

VA COLLECTIVE is a Miami-based freelance community composed of artists, designers, illustrators, and photographers. Their continuous collaborations with industry leaders and visionaries has enabled them to provide cutting-edge, yet accessible, approaches to all their projects. VA COLLECTIVE began through Nicolas Vasquez and Kevin Arrieta’s collaborative projects during the time they pursued their Masters degrees in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Environmental Urban Design. Motivated by the amount of local talent in South Florida, they sought out to create a community of creatives and entrepreneurs to collectively showcase their talents. Make sure to catch VA Collective’s interactive installation at the next Young Artist Initiative on May 7th at Lou La Vie.


Brian Rivera and Maria Gonzales work together on projects that bridge both their worlds, architecture and interior design. The result is a playful arrangement of things (materials, textures, shapes, and light) within space that challenges the familiar and have an inward and outward peculiarity. This polarization brings out their most captivating work and touches on the experiences of the viewers as a shared expression. As graduate students at the FIU School of Architecture, they are constantly seeking new means and methods through a variety of materials in an attempt to achieve the perfect balance of their contrasting perspectives.

Their installation for the May 7 event will be a suspended umbrella structure. “Concept: recreating the intimate sunset Miami is known for by reflecting the colors of the natural phenomenon onto an array of cloud-shaped umbrellas.”


Natalia Montaña (@whenartspeaks) is a graduate Architecture and Design student at Florida International University. Born in Bogota, Colombia on March 4th, 1993, she later moved to Miami where she spent the majority of her childhood. Her parents guidance led her to follow in their footsteps and pursue a career in the arts. She was nominated for the National YoungArts Foundation for her photography. She went on to join the Accelerated College of Architecture program in 2011, where she is currently a student and will soon graduate with a Master in Architecture. Make sure to catch Natalia’s installation at the next Young Artist Initiative at Lou La Vie on Saturday, May 7th!

She and Jorge Rodriguez will be live painting throughout the show!

Jorge Ernesto Rodriguez is an architecture student, designer, and illustrator raised mainly in Miami, Florida. Growing up, he gravitated towards street art, but simultaneously challenged himself in portraiture and figure studying. Jorge’s work aims to blend both portraiture and graffiti, transforming vibrant colors and contours into recognizable people and figures. He states: “the common subject comes from my respect for the common woman – her intelligence, beauty, and power. The lines are those delicate contours and shadows in everything. The hues I choose to use are what I see in those I paint.”


See their work firsthand and much more!

We invite you to enjoy and ponder the reflection of Miami’s Collective of Young Artists on Saturday, May 7th at Lou La Vie featuring Miami’s Micro Theater!

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