“Get Started Now” / A Visit to Viophilia
Last night a group of friends and I visited Viophilia, a combined studio, work, and event space in the Wynwood Design District. We were greeted by Ivette, one of the resident artists in the building who gave us a tour of the space. Ivette is one of the original founders of Viophilia, a year and a half old studio meant to bring creative minds together under one roof. Located in SoWyn, and a few blocks south of Wynwood’s cultural center, they are in a prime location to be fully involved with the artistic community that resides there. Ivette and her friends came together with a limited budget to create a space where they could work together and reflect. They came across their current building when they realized if they came together they could afford not only a better space, but a better location. In my opinion, they hit the jackpot. They reinvented the space (inside and out) by adding a kitchen, partitions for separate studio spaces, and exterior murals that pay homage to Wynwood’s iconic painted walls. Now, musicians, photographers, and artists have a space to develop, exhibit, and live among their works of art. Ivette says that she finds the biggest advantage to living and working in the same place is bringing people into her studio. To her convenience, clients can be met in a space that fully translates her essence as a creator through both atmosphere and art. The feeling is very unlike that of a gallery; her studio is bright and cozy in its miscellany. I can see the studio becoming a manifestation of your work and philosophy, as an echo of yourself and your life. I’ve always felt that my mind is a reflection of my workplace, something that proved to be very true when I was working in studio. This type of live/work space is key in the shift of Wynwood and Miami as a whole. Right now Wynwood is a destination, when it could (read: should) transform and become a place where people live and reap the benefits of their neighborhood. Wynwood’s limited daytime activity is a sign of it’s one sided life. Viophilia is moving in the right direction, providing space for people to fully emerge in the culture and life of Miami’s most vibrant art district. Getting a chance to visit was an eye-opening experience and I’m excited for Miami’s cultural and artistic future. Ivette’s best piece of advice? Get started now. Build a body of work, present it to others, carry a sketchbook with you and have a business card. Unfortunatelyyyy, I didn’t have a business card last night but I’m getting some printed ASAP. Haha. Bonus to having a live/work space: You can always hang with your puppy!