knight foundation

O, Miami Began With A Simple Idea: Poetry Without The Pipe And Blazer

Apr 3, 2013

Three years ago, a group of friends and I started to dream up what a lot of people considered impossible: a festival that would bring poetry to all 2.6 million residents of greater Miami.

At that time, Miami’s cultural scene was exploding. Art Basel was in full force, and we wanted to do a festival that was the opposite of the “pipe-and-blazer” readings that most people associate with poetry. We wanted to do a festival that reflected Miami’s diversity and personality.

O, Miami Headlines Poetry Month: Here's How To Celebrate

Apr 2, 2013


Today kicks off National Poetry Month, and O, Miami -- the biennial, South Florida poetry festival -- has lined up a myriad of creative ways to deliver a poem to every single person in the city.

The audio/visual set-up at ArtServe, an "arts incubator" in Fort Lauderdale, could use an upgrade. To get there, the organization needs equipment like XLR cables and a 12-channel mixer, plus permits and the manpower to install the gear. In total, it's expected to require nearly $7,500 in funds. 

With the Knight Foundation officially taking applications for this round of its Knight Arts Challenge grant, buzz about the program is heavy in Miami's artistic circles. As we pointed out the week applications opened, no project is necessarily too small or strange, and the foundation funds projects from funky to formal.


Knight Foundation and its Knight Arts Challenge grants have lubricated the city's arts community for the past five years, funding projects great and small that benefit the greater cultural good.

Those free projections on the side of the New World Symphony building and events in the Soundscape park? Knight money. The sculpture garden at the Bass Museum? Knight money. Those off-beat Weird Miami bus tours? Yep, also Knight money.

Cash and opportunity are on their way to 34 winners of the Knight Arts Challenge, announced last night in Miami. The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation selected the winners from 1,100 applicants.