Vue of the Front

My first day in New Orleans, I walked for miles…

Before I dive into it, I know I promised the next few posts would be about Coconut Grove but my trip to New Orleans is so fresh on my mind that I couldn’t resist. This week, the post below was featured on Fresh Art International, a blog written and narrated by the inspirational, Cathy Byrd.  The post is about an art collective called The Front of which my dear friend and equally incredible artist, Cristina Molina, is a part of. Another post unfolding my NOLA adventure will follow soon.  So be sure to check back.

Cristina Molina, artwork pictured on the left.

Cristina Molina, artwork pictured on the left.

Article as it appears on Fresh Art International:

Miami based novelist Maria Trujillo contributes this Fresh VUE feature. Her inspiration? An independent artist collective in New Orleans.

My first day in New Orleans, I walked for miles. Several blocks into my expedition, the seasoned city reaffirmed one of my culture mantras: For better or worse, with hardship comes inspiration. Creative minds merge to dissect problems and realize solutions—whether it be recovering from the devastation of a hurricane or forging a path for contemporary art. The Front artist collective is no exception. Their not-for-profit space wraps around the corner of St. Claude Ave. and Manzant St. in the quarter known as the Bywater. Behind the group’s humble façade, there are four galleries cleverly curated to show the work of the 18 artists in the collective.

The Front Door - Photo Cred. Jonathan Traviesa

The Front Door – Photo Cred. Jonathan Traviesa

The creatives behind the gallery bring to mind the many manifestos of art history’s past in that, by uniting, they are cultivating new and experimental work. Within their exhibition space, the Front exposes local contemporary art that stands apart from work seen in major art fairs. The Front’s grass-roots moxie echoes the independent spirit that so many love about New Orleans. An equally engaging characteristic is their open and inclusive attitude. Many of the shows include the work of artists that are not part of their collective, but whose philosophies or investigations align with theirs. The Front’s refreshing attitude has gained them notice and helped extend their reach as far as Japan. No doubt, their gallery, lectures, performances, and screenings are a growing asset to the New Orleans contemporary art scene. If you find yourself on the Prospect.3 route this fall, take time to stop by and see for yourself the inspiring dynamic of this creative space.


Local Author Night

A happening of manifested inspirations.

To write is to be inspired, whether by a visiting muse or by working through a mental block.  It’s a winding journey pocketed with struggles and triumphs but the writer’s final object is to share their visions with those willing to experience them. Bookstores play a pivotal role in marrying writers with readers. Of course, there are other roles that contribute to this union but when you are a self-published author the relationships you build with these wonderful havens is vital.

Bookstore in the Grove – Photo cred.

As a self-published author, I believe the Bookstore in the Grove has been the most forthcoming, friendly, and accommodating bookstore for local independent authors in Miami. They take large strides in spreading awareness of their dreams bounded by paper, ink, and glue. The bookstore itself is an absolute gem which boasts its own monthly book club, weekend brunch, and warm treats. One could get lost among its shelves or meet a friend for an afternoon.

Lost in the City of Flowers at bookstore.

Lost in the City of Flowers

Tonight, June 21st, at 7:30 PM, there will be a Local Author Night at the Bookstore in the Grove. I will be one of five authors offering glimpses into the creative mind behind each book. Feel free to come over, invite a friend, savor something sweet, and listen to writers’ dreams. There will be some time for book signing and questions as well.

I hope to see and meet some of you there!