Back in Business for more Art

After one year of successful attendance and audience, the Lincoln Rd. and Miami Beach Gallery walk featured Artist Anthony Ardavin' on their monthly invitation.

Every first Saturday of each month 7-10pm, you can stroll on Lincoln Rd and visit some of the galleries that open their doors for the monthly Arts Walk. Share some wine and cheese, enjoy what some of the best Contemporary Artists in Miami have to offer.

The next gallery walk will be  on Saturday, October, 2nd 2010

Below some invitations for past art walks.

For more info visit us in our Facebook page



By Eli Bravo

Miami is a city marked by human passage. It’s no coincidence
that Julia Tuttle, a widow from Cleveland, Ohio,
is considered the mother of this town. The land that her
father bought next to Biscayne Bay fascinated this lady,
and in the winter of 1891 she decided to bring a train to
her home; with aims of developing a city in the skirts of a
river that during thousand of years served as the pool for
the Tequesta Indians.
The Spanish, in XVI, eliminated a great part of these Indians
while being battered during 200 years by the English
and French, until 1763 when Spain gave Florida to the
United Kingdom in exchange for Cuba. This change didn’t
last long because the Spanish returned to charge 20 years
later, and settled here until 1821 when General Andrew
Jackson, -the one featured in the $5 bill-, took control of
the territory on behalf of the United States.

In 1959, Cubans, motivated by Castro, began stretching
the link between their island and the peninsula. Since
then, people have not ceased to arrive to this paradise
-which in some instances, is hell with air conditioning. Miami
is a city of immigrants with the advantage, according
to the more cynic, of being close to the U.S.
Of the two and a half million inhabitants, only 26% can claim to be ‘born and raised’
here. It’s easier to find an immigrant than an ATM. This makes the city, deliciously
diverse and terribly scattered. If someone declares to know the city, it’s probably a
lie or a politician in campaign (he’s lying).
The identity of Miami has been materialized on the screen with Miami Vice, on
the radio with Gloria Estefan and in sports with the Heat and the Marlins. Nothing
defines Miami as a whole, except maybe FPL (Florida Power and Light), whose
uncovered cables are to be blamed for our constant darkness with the arrival of
each hurricane. Without electric power we are all similar, however, some have larger
generator than others.
Miami is a city where people find their place in the world for a few years. Since it’s
NOT New York, here, everyone has a project in order to make the big leap into taking
advantage of everything still needed to be done. It’s not a requirement to live for
ten years in the city to call yourself a Miamian, -the will to hit the streets as if you
owned them and jump into the adventure is enough.
That is one great thing about this city, it’s an exhilarating experience of adaptation,
or something we can’t quite describe, but that keeps us alive, with the need to connect
to the energy left by all who have stepped through this land.
That’s why it’s essential to charge the streets with good vibrations, so that future
tenants can find common grounds and a space where they can evolve and create.


L.T. JOE SCHILLACI: The social passion of changing worlds

By Alfonso Corona and Isa Traverso -Burger

Lieutenant Joseph Schillaci of A&E’s
The First 48 reality TV is a veteran
of the Miami Police Department. He
was a Sergeant, a homicide investigator,
undercover narcotics cop and
former Lt. Commander of the Crime
Suppression Unit. Now, he is a certified
Nonviolence Specialist Counselor
and a Motivational Speaker,
proudly spreading the Kingian Non
Violence Philosophy. His passion
for greater awareness, -accompanied
by his personal experience,
is a key source in his mission to
eradicate verbal and physical violence.
Read this exclusive interview
for Distrikt to learn how he strives
to make a difference with The Unit.
He is currently finishing his book,
and when it comes out, we highly
suggest you read about Little Jasmine;
if that doesn’t change your life, nothing will.

Lieutenant, can you please explain your transition to this mission?
I do it because I have a purpose that I want to deliver, a solution to many problems
that are violence, prostitution and drug addiction. I’ve come up with this
solution not reading books, TV or magazines but from experience.
I’ve lived a life fulfilled. I’ve seen a lot: beatings, kidnapping, shootings, and -an
awful lot. Through good and bad I have developed this philosophy of making a
difference, getting the word out to schools and churches.
The main reason I left narcotics, the vice, the street, to come to The Unit is because
it’s the heart of the city, not a funnel. So many people can be reached;
nothing is more exciting in my life. That’s what I want to give back to the community.
This Unit has the ability to wrap their arms around kids that can cross
the line or are in process. I speak from the heart; I know what happens to a child
from when he’s 6 to 25 years old.
When I speak as ‘We’ it means the whole society. People put a stamp on violence,
but it’s not only murder and robbery, it’s also verbal. People get shot for
what they say. Most murders that occur happen because of what comes out the
victim’s mouth. I teach to communicate with each other; there is a right way to
do it. If we bumped into each other, light up and talk, alternatives to violence
are the clue.

How does that equate to this Unit?
This Unit is the spaceship that drives that message into our society, community, schools, and churches. We all have the same
passion and beliefs, guys do presentations, explore and reach out to kids, on how we can make a difference, so they can avoid
the crossing to No Man’s Land. Violence is not a normal part of life. I’ve seen a child stepping on a body to cross to the other side
of the street, he didn’t even acknowledge the corpse, and that is not normal behavior. Physical and verbal violence are abnormal
For example, The Police Athletic League goes out to schools and recruits kids into their program, to work with them and provide
alternatives. It’s vital that they become involved, become writers, sport coaches, athletes. The mentality has to stop being: “I can’t
play football, I go to sell drugs”. People think it just happens in bad areas, and it’s not true, it’s nationwide.
20 years ago I realized there were many things I wanted to try: play the piano; write a book, etc. I achieved both, I’m not the greatest
one but I tried. Find a passion, get the experience, pay it forward, and give it. What a waste to have knowledge and not give it to
someone else! I just want to plant the seeds; I have to believe that it will grow into something positive.

What are the key factors to find that passion?
We all have a passion. I speak on behalf of me, what’s worked for me,
I’ve had experiences and people pointing out my passion, pointing out
what I’m about, you have this ability, just tap into it. I’ve learned that,
through the passing of my mother and homicide investigations. Everyday
we wake up, there’s a beautiful sunrise, you close your eyes, and
there’s the sunset. It scares me to waste time. The point being, you
don’t have to be special, just raise your level of awareness. A lot of
people are afraid of dying and death, but they’re really afraid of living.
What are the facts that changed your life vision from 15 years ago?
From the time I was 5 or 6 I had this unbelievable profound passion to
talk to people. My mom was like that. There was a case not long ago
where we had to bring justice to a murder; everyone gave up on the
suspect, until I got him to confess. That made me realize that it was
because of my respect towards people.
How did you decide to become a policeman?
I was 8. I was playing football on the street and the ball went under this
police car, and he said: “you have to be careful where the ball ends.”
When I looked at that man I knew what I wanted to be, he became my
Godfather, Joseph Chancey, and the reason why I became a policeman.
I always say, wear your uniform proudly, but more importantly
your heart. It’s not your badge, authority or gun that gives you power,
it’s your heart.

In some Latin American countries, Mexico and Venezuela for example, we are
fearful of some cops.
You wear a badge of honor, you have tools, you can take away the freedom, or the
life of someone, it’s a tremendous responsibility and power. I have had to do both,
what I’ve learned, especially in the shooting, is that I went home and I cried, and
cried, and cried. It felt good to tell people, but it hurt. It’s okay to be a person, just
because I use a uniform doesn’t mean I don’t have feelings, I’m not a robot. You’re
going to make mistakes and hurt. It’s okay to be mad, cry at what you saw, and
okay to talk about it.
How do you persuade a society that revolves around money to care about other
Educate society; raise the level of awareness. Violence, -both physical and verbalis
NOT normal. Youngsters who are likely to get into trouble live day-to-day, looking
for the ‘bling’, not thinking about tomorrow. The propaganda teaches us that
consumerism is the way. “I am not going to be able to have those shoes, jeans,
car… I want to be like my classmates, like the celebrities.” Statistically, from the
ages of 16 to 25, sooner or later, you land in prison or get killed if you get into drug
Priorities are alert on not-so-positive thinking, fancy cars and money, do you
I don’t want to stereotype but money, jewelry, fancy houses, you don’t have to
have that to be successful, some kids realize that. Being bitter about what you
don’t have is not a normal behavior, the nervous system shuts down from all stress
and you end up not enjoying life.
Parts of society don’t know this. How do you teach them?
Dr. Martin Luther King, my mentor, is a driving force behind much of what I talk.
You just have to believe in it.
If you could be in charge of the educational system what lessons would you
To do at least one kind thing a day, -how hard is it to smile at somebody?
Impose unconditional love and respect towards each other.
Crime prevention and awareness of surroundings, -Don’t be naïve.
Take the time to learn about each other instead of judging.
Believing that This Unit is the heart of city.


BOZENKA The Exquisite Seduction of a Middle East Cuban

By Isa Traverso-Burger
Photos: Alfonso Corona

Shakira has made the shaking of the ass extremely
popular but this traditional body movement that
uses every muscle group of the body is not a one
woman’s dance, -men do it too. Places like Egypt,
Turkey, Lebanon, and Arabic countries have practiced
Raqs Sharqi (belly dancing) for centuries.
According to some, the most admired dancers are
the ones able to express their emotions through
the simplicity of movements connected to rhythm
and performance. The practice is beneficial for the
body and the mind, it’s a cardiovascular workout
that builds strength, improves self-esteem and
creates a better image. Some evidence suggests
that belly dancing’s hip-circling movements can
aid a woman during childbirth discomforts; not to
mention that sixty minutes of dancing can burn
330 calories.

Bozenka, which means ‘touched by God’, is a voluptuous,
tall, fair-skin woman who comes from a Cuban-
Czech heritage. Through her passion for belly dancing
she inspires people around the world to experience this
magnificent performing art. She lives in Miami where she
trained at The Mid Eastern Dance Exchange under the
leadership of Tamalyn Dallal. Two years later she earned
the prestigious Miss America of Bellydance title thanks to
her elegant and earthy charisma.
As if that was an indication of her future, Bozenka took the
enthusiasm to heart and kept focusing on a gift she obviously
has. A couple of months ago CNN reported, “An
American Belly Dancer has taken the Egyptian crown!”
after Bozenka, with her unique grace, beat 150 dancers
from all over the world in the “Ahlan Wa Sahlan” dance
festival in Cairo, Egypt.
Now a Bellydance Superstar, Bozenka continues to flourish
and demonstrate her spirit through the unspoken communication
of body movement. She has choreographed
for the Latin pop star mentioned in the first paragraph famous
for shaking her booty, performed with Alabina, and
entertained celebrities like Sean Connery, Donald Trump,
Hugh Hefner, Madonna, and Enrique Iglesias. With motivation
that impregnates all who attend, and with her characteristic
fervent technique, she is an admired instructor
in this Oriental dance form.

Bozenka says:


JORGE LUIS VARONA: When Hyperrealism Commits

By Jorge Luis Varona & Isa Traverso - Burger
Images courtesy of: Jorge Luis Varona

Cuban born Jorge Luis Varona left his home island at the age of five.
Although he enjoyed doodling, he didn’t want to take art classes,
“because I didn’t want someone to tell me how to do it” -even at the
urge of his parents. Feeling puny about his role in the world he went
for a Business Major in Miami Dade Community College and received
an AA. After that, not able to alienate the inspiration pouring out of
his mind, he enrolled in UM where he transferred from ‘architecture’
to ‘fine arts’. It is at this age of 22 that Jorge Varona finally began to
focus on his calling.

Besides obtaining an M.F.A from Colorado State University, he has
earned, twice, the Oscar B. Cintas Fellowship, -allowing him to be
exhibited in galleries all over the USA with other renowned Latin masters
such as Frida Kahlo, Fernando Botero, Wilfredo Lam, Amelia Pelaez, Tomas Sanchez and Miguel Padura.
His detailed-oriented works, which can take from one to six months
to complete, identify him as a realist; or how the audience’s acceptance
has categorized him: New American Realist. What his art
expresses is the perfect picture. He draws-as well as paint- with
such an impeccable detail, that you don’t know if what lies before
you is a painting or a photo, but it’s certainly a work of art. His
nudes are subtle and tasteful, -his portraits angelic.

Recently he has been centering the attention of his art on his Cuban American heritage: cafetera cubana, guayabera, machete,
juxtaposing it with something American, like apple pie. The aroma
of the coffee in the house, family and friends sharing the experience
of “un cafecito” all bring fond memories. Whether it is classical
or modern, his pieces tell a story, they take you to a moment
you might have lived, or might want to. He remembers nostalgically
and transmits this feeling to us, while it gets harder and harder
to believe the talent he creates. His images also include a leather
bomber jacket, “anones” that may identify his warrior side.
In Varona’s own words, “My work celebrates my heritage. I want to
take these objects that have been a part of me and elevate them to
something more than a mere object. In my work you will also find
hidden objects, they are almost a language of my own. These hidden
images might be a skull, the island of Cuba, and others. They
invite you to look at my work and revisit it to find more. The scale
of the paintings range from 12x18 in. to 3x5 ft.”
According to Carol Damian, art critic, Varona’s work has received a wide acceptance
within the category of New American Realism. “It is especially unusual today to see
the work of an artist who displays a mastery of the oldest and most traditional form
of artistry. The viewer is at once seduced and mesmerized by the accuracy of their
representation.” Armando Alvarez Bravo, art critic, states, “Varona is a Cuban artist
with a clean execution that introduces in his pieces a narrative that is eminently

Jorge is also a dedicated family man; his wife Iliana is a ballerina turned schoolteacher;
his son Jorge, an aspiring bass guitarist; and Carolina, his angel-like daughter
is a special needs child.



By Jose Luis Pardo

Tunes, like life itself, is evolving. We have featured shoes, hands, quirky music tastes and now, we are proud to bring you ‘music critique’. This time, Jose L. Pardo aka DJ Afro aka Cheo the guitar player of Los Amigos Invisibles, shares with Distrikt what he considers to be sublime music choices for the avant-garde thinker, versa- tile personality or curious music lover.

Coachella is a place where expanding your brain to listen to new proposals shouldn’t be anything new. A good friend insisted that he was doing me a favor by obligating me to watch Jamie Lidell.
There he was, on stage, adjusting his console, fabricating noises, yelling, dancing like Moreno Michael (a popular, versatile Latin show man) and demonstrating to me that he is the most fun and talented one-man-show-orchestra I will ever see in my life.
We tried to understand what was happening before our eyes and arrived to a conclusion: this character is the king of weird nerd neo soul. Once the astonishment passed -and after purchasing the CD, I realized I found one of those gems that makes you feel ashamed to have believed that you had everything you need in your hands.
An exaggeration of talent; a producer who seems to be speaking to the Gods every time he sings, brings us a soul full record impregnated with delicate strokes of electronica which create an exquisite Pop, the kind we miss from a Prince or a Michael. It is pure funky flavor, rare grooves, jazz and everything we sing with our eyes closed, as if it was made by a good cousin but with grandma’s recipe.

I almost fainted the first time I heard Maria Daniela. While driving through Mexico’s capital city I heard her amusing voice as my face revealed a smile; but my ego was beaten me up -angry because I wasn’t the author of this amazing sound.
Some of my friends could not comprehend my sensibility towards this CD that sounded like Flans (cheesy Mexican Pop) produced by Depeche Mode, but on acid. I heard it many times trying to understand why I liked it so much and far from acknowledging the deep sociological impact of this project, I found myself completely obsessed.
In Latin America we were kindly brought up by endless charismatic projects produced by corporate demented people, anxious to capitalize on us: innocent children, full of acne and hormones, discovering our bodies, trying to find our place in this world.
Today, those children are adults, and far from denying what we find in our hard drives, some of us celebrate shouts and yelling, reminding us how boring adult life is and how fun it was to grow up in a world filled with teen stars; and how they played an important role in our lives and even our sexuality.
I want to dedicate this production to everyone who pretends that they began their musical journey with Pink Floyd, The Cure and New Order when instead, the real door openers into the music genre were bands like Flans, Timbiriche and Menudo, and all those groups that made us feel we were not alone during those difficult moments, transitioning from childhood to teenage years.


Russian Language


This issue of World 101 is dedicated to the Russian language, one of great political importance in the 20th century. Its history is di- vided into four periods: Kievan period and feudal breakup, Muscovite period (15th-17th centuries), Empire (18th-19th centuries) and Soviet period and be- yond (20th century).
Russian is spoken in: Russia, former Soviet Republics, former War- saw Pact-member states, Israel, Mongolia, and Svalbard. It belongs to the family of Indo-European languages. Total speakers: About 145 million
Writing system: Cyrillic alphabet Official language of: Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Unit- ed Nations, Crimea, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Transnistria, Gagauz- ia and some regions of Ukraine.
Here are some popular Russian proverbs and their meanings:
/v trid’ev’atom tsartsv’e/ “in the three-ninth kingdom”, it’s a typical beginning of a fairy tale and is used ironically to describe a place far away.
/ni k s’elu, ni k gorodu/ “neither for a village nor for a city”, meaning of no use or relevance.
/delat’ iz mukhi slona/ “to make an elephant from a fly”, meaning something impossible to achieve.
/kogda rak (na gore) svistnet/ “when the crayfish will whistle (on the mountain top)”, meaning never.

•Thank you very much
Spaseebo balshoye•

•Don’t mention it

•Do you speak Russian?
Vy gavareeteh pa ru-sky?•

•Do you speak English?
Vy gavareeteh pa anglisky?•

•I don’t speak English
Ya ne gavareeu na angliyskom•

•I don’t speak Russian
Ya ne gavareeu na ruskom•

•My Russian is bad
Ya ploha gavaru pa Ruski•

•I do not understand
Ya ne paneemau•

•Could you speak slowly?
Gavareeteh medlenie•

Russians in History:

• Peter the Great: Ruled Russia from 1682 until his death. He transformed Muscovite Russia into a major European power. • Alexander Suvorov: Last Generalissimo (not counting Stalin). He never lost a battle; he was famed for his manual The Science of Victory.
• Alexander Pushkin: Romantic author considered the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature. • Ivan Pavlov: Won Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1904 for research pertaining to the digestive system. Pavlov was known for first describing the phenomenon known as classical conditioning.
• Yuri Gagarin: was a Soviet astronaut who in 1961 became the first human in space and the first human to orbit the Earth. • Vladimir Lenin (born Ulyanov): Communist revolutionary, the leader of the Bolshevik party, initiator of Leninism -an adaptation of Marxism to “the age of imperialism.
• Mikhail Gorbachev: Leader of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991. He helped to end the Cold War and dissolve the Soviet Union. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1990.



photos: Alfonso Corona

Just like in our 3rd issue, Architect Miguel Angel Aragones shows his perfect and daring lines in space and materials; we now bring you the second version of this white and minimalist balance. This time we head to the Capital of Mexico, also known as, D.F
Although not everyone likes this type of decoration and architecture, once you visit and inhabit this space, you’ll understand a new palpable dimension in this crowded and polluted city. With its simple, elegant and spatial distribution, you’ll find yourself immersed in a cloud of materials and light textures with perfect finishes -wherever you look.

A perfect rounded marble sphere receives color light from a spot projector more than 30ft above; the hard-light quality of the projector gives a strong personality to this living object in the middle of the white marble desert that surrounds it.
In the outside, we find a black bottom fountain that will host a huge tribe of orange Koi fishes making it seem like a living water-mirror that shows us no end, no profundity.
The space on top of the lower living room is a meditation quarter with ambient speakers and tatami mats all over the squared, Zen-filled area. Talk about relaxation!

The impeccable white surfaces everywhere give you a floating and silencing atmosphere. And imagine that! The breakfast dining area has furniture designed by world renowned Phillipe Stark.
The multiple terraces give the property a series of light filtrations that turn on the whole peaceful house into a haven. With its monumental open spaces, lighting dimensions and awesome finishes, this architectural space gives you the opportunity to enter a different spot –different from the one 5 minutes ago.

The furniture materials includes leather, steel, marble among other interesting and yet not common materials. Every Plasma screen can be covered by false wooden walls. The Onyx lamps light the rooms with the exact amount and quality of desired light.
Mr. Aragones is, with no doubt, one of the best young architects in Mexico daring to contribute to this city’s growth, as one of the most important and culturally enriched in Latin American.
These houses and this type of architecture are certainly not for everyone to like or live in, but, like one little -but powerful- fellow said once, stature is not measured from the head to the earth but from the head to the sky. In here, only tall people fit and can fill the rooms, according to this great architect.
Every decoration detail has a well defined artist seal like the coffee and Onyx center piece in the dining room table. The feminine shapes around the house connect you with terrain and creative energy, inviting you to become part of it.
The cost of building this type of architectural space is very large, once accomplished, these livable places are worth astonishing amounts of money; but it comes with a great advantage: style, quality and lots of peaceful moments.
I hope you enjoy this strange hole into a person’s creativity, dedication and imagination as much as we have.
If this white lifestyle is not your ideal architectural space, just flip the page be- cause something colorful is coming right after.




Back in the 80’s where girls dressed like boys with loose clothes, oversized blazers, short haircuts while the boys liked the eye paint, glossy lipstick and girlish dances, bands like Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, The Cure, INXS and every trans-hair-feminine music group was the ultimate success...
....Back when there was a whole audience for two boys named “Cory” and the coolest thing was to go to the movies to watch the “Brat Pack” wearing a jean jacket, comes the birth of the action figure and the way people see a whole new generation of conceptual characters that detonated one of the first stages in graphic design history.
This 80’s fever blew up basically when a movie director created plastic versions of his sci-fi movie characters, this was called the Star Wars fever, a never-before seen marketing extravaganza that sort of ended 25 years later....This is where the figurines and other interesting adult-toys and articles (not the ones Alberto would talk about in his S.E.X section) became a fundamental part of our childhood and culture evolving in some other ways; later, they divorced in physical and conceptual ways from their ‘ideal parents’ or roll models -Barbie and Ken- starting a new generation of human thoughts.

Can you imagine our generation growing up without figurines? These guys have been more transcendental than we think...
Anyway, several years later, this graphic movement started to flourish when a guy called Bill Gates was forced to re -invest some money in a company that Forrest Gump called ‘some fruit company’ (Apple) in order to avoid a monopoly trial about him controlling the computer world (like he doesn’t, right?).
Once Apple was revived in the early 90’s after being overwhelmed by one of their own creators, the whole graphic design industry became one of the most effective and fast-growing movements in the whole human communication history.... all this thanks to Congress!

These days with the marvelous Macintosh computers being more efficient in every bi-monthly expensive release, graphic arts and proposals have been evolving and becoming accessible to most people, even the non-technological ones.
Today we have different, almost infinite, design and production styles; the graphic design world has amazing dreams and proposals that have become real works of art and creativity, just like our favorite pet: Kuma Distrikt (no offense Ansel and Jelly).
For some people, these figurines are only toys, for some of us they are real forms of modern art. I’m pretty sure of one thing, every time I take a look at some of Maria Sarmiento’s designs they make me feel like the way I felt back then, when some of our most important activities had to do with doing homework and eating our vegetables. I feel that but with the intensity that comes with adulthood.
Although the graphic designer, industrial designer and architect have a very tough place in the communications industry by having to combine an artistic inspiration with a client’s taste, all of them manage to do a bit of everything by becoming inspired, developing the digital file, doing the changes or adjustments and, the most painful one after some long weeks or months, getting paid!
Have you tried to fabricate any art in your office or home lately? Have you tried it even if you think there’s not a single hair of art-talent in your body?
Well, we suggest trying this out! Even if you’re an accountant and have paper clips all over your desk or you’re sitting in this wonderful plane via Mexico or in your home office...go for it an do it only for your own pleasure, once you’re pleased, you can share it with other people.
Look all around for the first thing that catches your eyesight, grab it and like Don Armando Manzanero said in our 3rd issue’s INNERVIEW: Do something pretty with it!
Don’t be afraid of re-shaping it or giving this object a different view, a different life or function, you can re paint it, re use it, give him other object friends that want to share the same space with him, etc. Do something unique with it and feel free to do it! If this object was not yours and you accomplished something that pleases you, ask the person who owns it to donate it for the sake of art.... trust me, great art creations came from moments like this.
I think that ‘creativity’ is another muscle in our body and like the rest of unused muscles, they loose strength and ability, so use yours every day....
One last tip, if you’re a guy, don’t just use this growing creativity to have day sex with every girl that goes by and if you’re a girl don’t just use this creativity to feedback conclusive ideas. This wonderful energy and ability inside every human being is meant to make pretty things and make all of us understand each other in two universal languages: Love and Art.