Bitch-slapped by the 100-year flood of last January, the intrepid artists and entrepreneurs of the Boynton Beach Art District are back on their feet again and ready to roll. To celebrate, they're hosting an art walk tomorrow night including live music, live painting and fire dance.
Located in a low-lying industrial district just west of the FEC railroad tracks off I-95, the BBAD's storage bays and workspaces were especially vulnerable to the nearly two feet of rain that came down January 10. The district's residents lost an estimated $60,000 of equipment, materials, and irreplaceable art to the flood.
The local community's response to the disaster was "moving, overwhelming," according to Rolando Chang Barrero, whose ActivistArtistA Gallery is the district's spark plug. "Almost every artist I know kicked in $20 or so to help out," he told New Times. "The vendors at our events held a fundraiser at Respectable Street. Local businessman Glen Pearce donated $900!"
The money raised so far -- nearly $2000 -- has been set aside to replace the BBAD's sound equipment. (They're using borrowed equipment tomorrow.) A March 2 benefit (details to follow) is slated to raise funds for computers and a/c. The art that was lost, that's gone with the wet. "I held a waterlogged fire sale," Barrero told us. "Sold damaged pieces off for $10 each."
"We went from flood to festival in one week," Barrero said. "The Art al'Fresco show went on as planned. With the art walk tomorrow, we're fully back."
Tomorrow night's musical headliner is J.C. Dwyer, lead singer and guitarist with Lake Worth's Mobile Homies, self-described "Rockers who grew up on country and got sick of hearing the glitzy crap that passes for country these days and decided, 'Zoddammit, we gotta do something about this!'"
Working the turntables will be DJ Thought, of Smooth Bounce Entertainment. Slinging paint in real time will be multi-media threat Craig McInnis. The Philosofires performance troupe will set the night alight with fire dance, hula hoop, and belly dance. The show must go on.
Boynton Beach Live. 7 to 11 p.m., Thursday, February 20, 422 West Industrial Ave.,
Fire Ant -- an invasive species, tinged bright red, with an annoying, sometimes-fatal sting -- covers politics, activism, the environment and culture in Palm Beach County and elsewhere. Got feedback or a tip? Contact Fire.Ant@BrowardPalmBeach.com.