New investments bolster artists and arts organizations using technology, 2022 Knight New Work winners, 2022 Knight Arts Champions and a new $40.7 million investment in Miami artists and arts organizations.

MIAMI — On November 28, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation unveiled its fifth major wave of arts grants in a campaign to make art general in Miami. The recipients are:

  • 2022 Knight New Work winners, a group of Miami artists and arts organizations using technology to create new works;
  • 2022 Knight Arts Champions, South Florida leaders who play key roles in building our arts community; 
  • and a total of $40.7 million in new multiyear investments in local arts organizations and initiatives that use technology in their practices to enhance the way art is produced, shared and experienced.

In all, these investments, part of a strategy to make art general in Miami, will bring Knight’s overall commitments to the arts in Miami to $217 million since 2005. 

Arts and culture are central to building stronger and more engaged communities, which are critical for an effective democracy. The foundation embarked on an intentional strategy to be the second- or third-largest funder of arts institutions in the city to help stabilize them and encourage others to become funders. Simultaneously, Knight also intentionally became a major founder of what could be called serendipitous art, largely through no-rules contests that reward Miami artists who produce art in and around Miami. This led to a significant increase in the credibility of arts organizations and attracted hundreds of millions of dollars more in grants from many other sources. It also led the public to demand and use more art offerings. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the use of digital technology as a tool in making and disseminating art and engaging audiences, which Knight had been encouraging for years, became commonplace.

Knight’s 2022 arts investments in Miami are situated at the intersection of art and technology. By funding the application of technology to the creation, dissemination and experience of art, Knight seeks to support artists and institutions as they use new tools to attract, retain and grow audiences. 

“Art and culture connect people to place and to each other,” Knight Foundation president Alberto Ibargüen said. “We have supported local artists and institutions who have built a Miami where art thrives,” he added. 

The evening began with a performance by a New World Symphony quintet.

“When we invest in music and museums, in poetry and performances,” Ibargüen continued, “we are investing in the fiber that strengthens our communities. Really good art inspires and explains, ennobles and challenges, and helps us understand and connect to a place, and to each other.”

He then presented more than 50 grants, including to established institutions, artists doing new digital work and a range of citizen activists and artists who are asked to pay forward grants of $10,000.

“These Knight Arts Champions,” he said, “often connect us with artists and art organizations that are good, even cutting-edge, but aren’t on our radar or in our network.” This year, for the first time, the group included four grants by young artists.

On the eve of Miami Art Week, the event concluded with an example from Miami’s creative sector. More than 400 attendees listened to local poet Arsimmer McCoy read her poem “Miami’s Atlas,” accompanied by a drone show programmed to illustrate her words across the sky.

This round of grants will be invested as follows: 

  • Bakehouse Art Complex – $1,000,000
  • The Bass Museum – $1,250,000
  • CasaCuba, Florida International University – $1,500,000
  • Fountainhead Residency – $444,000
  • GableStage – $1,000,000
  • Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami – $1,000,000
  • Knight Digital Transformation Fund – $3,000,000
  • Knight New Work, Miami – $2,000,000
  • Locust Projects – $750,000
  • Miami City Ballet – $2,000,000
  • Miami New Drama – $1,000,000
  • Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami – $1,000,000
  • New World School of the Arts – $1,000,000
  • New World Symphony – $10,000,000
  • Nu Deco Ensemble – $1,000,000
  • O, Miami – $2,500,000
  • Oolite Arts – $1,250,000
  • Pérez Art Museum Miami – $5,000,000
  • Rubell Museum – $1,000,000
  • The Wolfsonian–Florida International University – $2,000,000
  • YoungArts – $1,000,000

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