Rolando Chang Barrero is floored by what is happening in the Boynton Beach Arts District, and that's a good thing.
"There is a lot going on," Barrero said.
The artist and creator of ActivistArtistA gallery in Boynton Beach recently participated in launching the first International Kinetic Art Exhibit and Symposium, a project that consumed much of his time in recent months. (Read WLRN's story on the project.) On top of that, the reinvigorated one-block arts district he helped to foster in Boynton continues to host regular art walks and popular monthly open mic nights.
"Boynton Beach is fast becoming the little art Mecca in Palm Beach County," Barrero said. "Boynton Beach is by far the leader in the area."
The district -- concentrated at 422 West Industrial Avenue -- started out initially as a 300-square-foot warehouse. It has grown from three to 13 artists, and recently added an additional studio and gained outdoor exhibition space. Barrero, who moved from Miami to Boynton Beach in search of more affordable work space, said the district is an area where artists live and work. Unlike Miami's Wynwood, which is home to restaurants and stores in addition to galleries, Boynton's district is dedicated solely to art.
"Everyone who comes here is an artist or a patron of the arts," Barrero said. "It's relaxed and we make it family friendly."
The artists and performers who participate in the art walks and public events are cognizant of the "all ages" makeup of the audience, which Barrero said helps to build a space where kids can appreciate and participate in the arts: "We're trying to create something that's not inside a club or a bar."
Sunday, the district will be abuzz in activity for the second annual KeroWACKED Multimedia Fest, inspired by the Beat Generation.
"We want to create a space where all of the arts are flowing," Barrero said.
Nearly a dozen musicians and bands will perform throughout the day, including Yeshiva and Nmbr11, Mylo Ranger, The Von, Future Prezidents, Making Faces, Koffin Varnish, Suga Wack, Flint Blade, Vis Major, Awake the Lion, and Spencer Allan Patrick.
In addition to art from resident district artists, Graffiti Iconz out of Lake Worth will be on-site, creating new work on an 80-foot wall that Barrero said "changes every three months" and serves as a popular backdrop for local film crews. Belly dancing performances and workshops are on the agenda, as is live painting, chalking, and food from popular Palm Beach County food truck PS561.
KeroWACKED is noon until 10 p.m. on Sunday. The cost is $10 per adult and free to kids ages 13 and younger. If you arrive before noon, there's no admission charge.