What began as a grassroots festival to bring awareness to South Beach’s movement to preserve its plethora of neglected Art Deco buildings and hotels, has grown into the largest celebration of historical structures from the 20s, 30s and 40s-era. Today, Art Deco Weekend has evolved to include musical performances, fashion shows, walking tours, movie screenings, lecture series and antique cars. Over 400,000 people attend annually and it’s a must-see event for locals and tourists alike.
Initially, the impetus to recognize South Beach’s Art Deco architecture was spurred on by activists Barbara Baer Capitman, John Capitman and Leonard Horowitz, who founded the Miami Design Preservation League (MDPL) in 1976. Two years later, they held the first Art Deco Festival, which was actually a week long event. As the festival grew, so, too, did the preservation movement, and since 1992, South Beach’s Art Deco buildings are no longer in danger.
Art Deco Weekend 2015 celebrates 100 years of history, architecture and people! Join us January 16th – 18th as we take a step back in time and remember the last 100 years of Miami Beach.
Every year during Art Deco Weekend, Miami Design Preservation League closes Ocean Drive to traffic. Over 140 vendors line Lummus Park and Ocean Drive displaying vintage and handmade paintings, photography, jewelry, sculptures, posters and more. Ocean Drive fills with street entertainment, classic cars and people. However, the main attraction is the Art Deco buildings sitting on the most famous street in South Florida!
The Museum allows tourists and locals to better understand the architectural heritage and community culture of Miami Beach. MDPL designed the museum to be educational and informational, while reflecting the fun and glamour of Miami Beach. A visit to the museum will teach about the three major historic design styles in Miami Beach. These styles are Mediterranean Revival, Art Deco and Miami Modern (MiMo). Scale models of select buildings allow you to have a closer look at the elements of these structures. You will also learn about the development of the City Miami Beach. The Miami Beach Visual Memoirs project has recorded the personal stories of people who have been a part of Miami Beach’s story. MDPL’s history is also on display so that guests can learn more about preservation. The museum includes a resource center, a children’s area, rotating exhibits and much more!
The Promenade is the cultural hub at Art Deco Weekend. Attendees will be able to dance to music from the 1920s, 30s & 40s as jazz musicians & big bands take the stage. Attendees will be able to see furniture and home accessories made in Art Deco decades. Models will take the stage and showcase clothing and accessories made or inspired by the Art Deco era. Finally, the ADW Film Series will feature films made in Miami Beach as we celebrate the “100 Years of Miami Beach!”
The Playground is a special area of Art Deco Weekend for kids and families. The Playground is open to the public on Saturday (1/17) and Sunday (1/18) from NOON – 5PM. The Playground is located in Lummus Park by 13th street and features live performances just for kids along with kids activities and vendors. On Sunday, we will kick off the day at the Playground with an event for dogs, so bring the whole family to Art Deco Weekend and visit the Playground!
Stay tuned at Miami City Social for more information.