Katie Barr

Katie was the owner of the Haitian Art Collection in Delray Beach

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Will your job exist in a thousand years? If so, in what form?

Absolutely! Art and the human spirit are intertwined; this can be traced as far back as the Neanderthals. The need to create works of art, to express oneself in a tangible manner, will always be with us. In the future artworks could take the form of holograms projecting the artist's passion directly on a wall, ever-changing with the viewer or artist's mood. Or perhaps a painting you enter on a virtual level.

Which events from the year 2001 will still be talked about in a thousand years? How will history interpret -- or misinterpret -- those events?

The most obvious answer would be the recent China/United States spy-plane crisis, but when all is said and done, both nations will need to trade labor and technology, so I can't imagine this will prove to be a millennium-shaping event. What will shape the future, however, is the work being done on the Human Genome Project. Knowledge gleaned from this venture will affect us on physical, economic, and spiritual levels well into the next thousand years.

What will South Florida look like one millennium from now?

Jokingly I'd say that from coast to coast there will be an Eckerd and Walgreens on every corner, with stacks of condos on top of each one. But I hope that's not true! Our heritage as Floridians, brief as it may be, is worth preserving. I moved my gallery to the historic downtown area of Delray Beach four years ago because of its charm and uniqueness. So far the city officials and major developers have also shown an appreciation for maintaining Delray's individuality. I hope Florida will grow around its history and not over it.

What will human beings look like?

Going back to my statement on the HGP, in a thousand years we will have eradicated all diseases and birth defects. But the real revelation of this research will be to demonstrate that man's ethnic diversity is exactly what makes us stronger as a species. No one race or nationality is more important than another but interdependent on the survival and proliferation of each.

Which South Florida tourist attractions will stand the test of time, and which will disappear? What will the new tourist traps look like?

Man-made attractions can't hold a candle to what makes South Florida a true paradise. The Everglades, the waterways, the ocean -- your legacy. Boca Raton did a very smart thing 30-odd years ago: The city bought up the beachfront property and made it a public park. A thousand years from now, I think most coastline cities will have also seen the merit in that move, and bit by bit will have bought back their beaches. The water will always bring people to Florida.

 
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