Best Art Walk Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach 2014 - FAT Village Art Walk
Just a few short years ago, the area now known as FAT Village — short for Flagler Arts and Technology — was a no-man's-land just east of Maguire's Irish Pub. There wasn't much to see and even less to do. Sure, there were some artists toiling in little warehouse studios and a few graphic arts companies churning out their art in obscurity, but you had to be a real inside member of the hyperlocal art community to even know they were back there. Anyone living outside of downtown would say, "Art scene? You mean those chichi galleries on Las Olas?" Pause and appreciate how far the area has come in such a short time. The monthly art walk is largely responsible for that growth. Helium Creative, the World and Eye Arts Center, Cadence Landscape Architecture + Urban Design, the annual Day of the Dead Celebration, and C&I Studios are just a few of the well-known denizens of this scene. C&I Studios has even put in a coffee shop next door called Next Door. From 7 to 11 p.m. on the last Saturday of each month (except December), the galleries throw open their doors, the food trucks line up, and the crowds gather. About 1,000 people descend on the gritty, gravelly area by the railroad tracks. You bump into people you haven't seen in a while, admire some out there art, find some inspiration, pet some dogs, and visit the pop-up galleries, all within four square blocks.