News Release Header
For Immediate Release:
March 27, 2014
Media Contact:
Cathy Guerra

The Deering Estate Festival of the Arts Features Visual, Literary and Performing Arts

(MIAMI, March 27, 2014) - Experience, engage and explore the integrated relationship between people and the environment through site specific eco and environmental works during the Deering Estate Festival of the Arts, April 11-13, 2014, at the Deering Estate at Cutler. Funded through a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Artworks Grant, Curator Lucinda Linderman shares “this festival brings together artists of varying art-making practices that raise awareness about environmental issues and man’s impact in his environment. Some works are created with alternative materials such as dirt, plastics, and discarded objects, while other works inspire action and activism through poetry and performance.”  Interactive activities and performances include the National Water Dance event, a photography competition, an Eco-Scavenger Hunt and a Mangrove Boardwalk Nighttime Adventure Tour!. Events on Friday evening & Saturday after 3:30 pm are FREE and open to the public. On Saturday, April 12th, food and beverages will be available at the Culinary Café by the courtyard.  

The In Deep theme for the Festival includes 27 literary artists, 61 visual artists, and 122 performing artists:

VISUAL: Coral Morphologic artists Colin Foord and Jared McKay, one of 61 visual artists featured at the festival, will be showcasing their projection artwork 'Cassiopeia' a rhythmically-pulsing photosynthetic jellyfish (Cassiopeia xamachana), a species that is common in the waters around the Estate. The Cassiopeia jellyfish is unique in that it lives upside-down on the seafloor, “sunbathing” in the warm, shallow waters of Biscayne Bay. Says Foord, “we chose the Cassiopeia jellyfish because it serves as an example to humans on how to become more energy efficient, synergistic, and appreciative of our Sun's life-giving energy. Humans have the technology to become more photosynthetic..It is our hope that by showing 'Cassiopeia' at the Deering Estate we will make people think about the benefits of solar energy, especially in such a sunshine-blessed place like Miami.” 

LITERARY: Mia Leonin, Literary Artist in Residence at the Deering Estate, will read from a book of poems she wrote during her residency which features an eight year-old girl Micala, who lives by the sea. The book is about how children can lean against trees as if they were real people. Leonin will also organize a series of readings around the fire circle with three guest poets: Maureen Seaton, Carolina Hospital and Nicole Hospital-Medina, and the public will be invited to bring a poem to share.  The guest poets and Leonin will also lead small groups on an Ekphrastic Amble – a walk through the indoor and outdoor exhibitions where festival goers are invited to compose and tweet poems (#deeringpoetry) in response to the artwork. 

PERFORMING: The National Water Dance Performance, a simultaneous performance with 91 participating National Organizations, Dance Schools and Universities, is a beautiful movement choir with over 100 voices, musicians and dancers who will grace the main lawn and boat basin of the Estate while bringing attention to our fragile waters. For full participant listing please visit A corresponding onsite water awareness event and Shower Head Exchange will also take place by the Main Gate.  

Partner organizations include:

Playwright partners Lost Girls Theatre, Artist in Residence in the Everglades (AIRIE Residency), Coralmorphologic, FIU FCE-LTER, Tropical Botanic Artists, Keith Waddington (University of Miami), Locust Projects, The High Waterline Project, National Water Dance with  simultaneous activity at over 90 Universities, Miami Dade College Dance Department and Earth Ethics Institute, Arthur and Polly Mays Conservatory of the Arts, R.R. Moton Elementary, New World School of the Arts, Miami Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) - Artworks, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and The Deering Estate Foundation, Inc. 

Participating Artists include:                          

Deering Estate Artist in Residence Program: Michael Gellatly, Robert Sparrow Jones, Natalya Laskis, Mia Leonin, Nancy Martini, Gerry Stecca, Aida Tejada. AIRIE Residency: Harumi Abe, Wendy Call, Mark Dion and Dana Sherwood, Karen Glaser, Judith Greavu, Joanna Kidd and Danni Downing, Deedra Ludwig, Gustavo Matamoros, Christopher Reiger, Anne McCrary Sullivan. Invited Exhibitors Karla Caprali, Martin Casuso, Coralmorphologic Artists Colin Foord and Jared McKay, Xavier Cortada, Felice Grodin, Adler Guerrier, Babette Hirschberg, Harry Hudson, Courtney Johnson, Alejandro Mendoza, Deborah Mitchell, National Water Dance, Margi Nothard, O, Miami Poetry Festival, Laz Oljalde, Gustavo Oviedo, Jose Pacheco Silva, Ralph Provisero, Valeria Rocchiccioli, Samantha Salzinger, Colin Sherrell, Francisco Sheuat, James Taylor, Eve Mosher and Heidi Quante - High Waterline Project, Leandro Vasquez, and Keith Waddington. Tropical Botanic Artists; Margie Bauer, Kristi Bettendorf, Beverly Borland, Silvia Bota, Marjorie Brown, Marie Chaney,Jeanie Daniel Duck, Julio J. Figueroa     Bobbi Garber, Pauline A. Goldsmith, Leo Hernandez, Kathleen Konicek-Moran, Carol Ann Lane, Elsa Nadal, Laurie Richardson, Donna Torres, Jedda Wong. Spoken Soul Festival: SoulFlower, Deborah Magdalgna. 

The opening event of the Festival of the Arts takes place on Friday, April 11th with the reading of Messenger #4 (or How to Survive a Greek Tragedy) by Will Hollis Snider. Presented by our playwright partners Lost Girls Theatre, Andie Arthur and Katie Siegal, the play addresses how a character’s actions inadvertently change the world. Held in the Visitor Center Theatre, a newly enhanced venue made possible by a John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Grant. 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm; FREE and open to the public 

The Eco and Environmental Art Exhibit In Deep opens to the public on Saturday, April 12th at 3:30 pm. The day features Family Friendly interactive activities such as an Eco-Scavenger Hunt and Bring Your Own Perspective (BYOP) photography competition with prizes, a Nighttime Adventure Tour of the Mangrove Boardwalk Trail, as well as the Ekphrasitic Amble, a twitter poetry response (#deeringpoetry) to onsite works. 

At 4:00 pm is the National Water Dance Performance, followed at 4:45pm by the In Deep Curator’s tour led by Exhibit Curator and environmental artist Lucinda Linderman and Deering Estate Exhibit Specialist, Kim Yantis. Get a behind the scenes look at the selection of artists and creation of works that showcase the many facets of eco and environmental art. Later in the evening at 8 pm, participating artists and Deering Estate Assistant Director, Jennifer Tisthammer direct guests to an informal walking question & answer style tour of the indoor and outdoor works. Nature-based readings and ongoing poetry will occur in multiple locations with Literary Artist in Residence Mia Leonin, invited individual poets, Spoken Soul Festival, and O, Miami Poetry Festival participants culminating at the fire circle with participatory poems. 

On Sunday, April 13th, the Living Artist Concert Series presents “A Spark of Genius: Nature’s Prodigies,” a celebration of musical imageries in nature and of natural sound. Guest violinist Charles Castleman and founding members of the Deering Estate Chamber Ensemble perform early chamber music works by Felix Mendelssohn and Erich Korngold. A Meet the Artist Reception begins at 6:30 pm with a 7:15 pm concert start. The cost is $25 for adults & $12 for youth (Grades K-12). 

For more information on the Deering Estate Festival of the Arts, please visit or call the Deering Estate Ticket Office at 305-235-1668 ext. 233. 

With support of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Deering Estate Foundation, Inc. 

About the Deering Estate at Cutler

The Deering Estate at Cutler, a Miami-Dade County Park, is located at 16701 SW 72 Avenue in Miami. This 444-acre natural and archeological preserve and historic site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and serves as a center for education, culture and recreation. Historic house tours are offered daily at 10:30 am & 3:00 pm. Natural areas tours are offered daily at 12:30 pm (October – May). EcoAdventure Tours are also offered throughout the year for an additional fee. For more information on the Deering Estate's educational and cultural programs, please visit