Make arts and culture the center of growth in downtown Fort Lauderdale

In early April, the Nova Southeastern University Art Museum Fort Lauderdale hosted the first-ever international “Codaworx: Experience” summit. The conference brought together hundreds of creatives, civic leaders, and tech companies whose fusion of art and technology creates phenomenal civic projects. These projects promote economic development, promote civic engagement and stimulate tourism. The two-day event featured an evening display of an impressive animated artwork projected via advanced laser projection technology onto the museum’s modernist building facing Las Olas Boulevard.

The NSU Art Museum was the perfect venue for this cutting-edge event. For more than 60 years, the museum has remained a mainstay and engine of cultural flourishing in downtown Fort Lauderdale. The NSU Art Museum is the central meeting point (literally and figuratively) of South Florida, representing a crossroads of culture. It has an extensive permanent collection of works of art and has produced world-class art exhibitions which have featured renowned artists such as Frida Kahlo, Frank Stella, Keith Haring, Kehinde Wiley, Anselm Kiefer, Renoir and Picasso , while dedicating itself to enhancement and education. the work of local artists.

The NSU Art Museum is on par with the finest museums in the world. Since its 2008 merger with Nova Southeastern University, one of the largest private research universities in the United States, the NSU Art Museum has actively fostered a strong community through the arts where families can build memories and enthusiasts of art connect to the international art world. Its free field trips and grassroots art workshops attract more than 3,000 Broward County youth from low-income families each year, and its free Teen Arts Council provides teens with exciting career training in the arts.

Thriving arts and cultural organizations are what make cities vibrant and iconic. There are no big cities without great museums. Sustained growth is fueled by sustained culture and various types of interesting items, from visual arts to performing arts, museums and beyond. Since 2010, Fort Lauderdale has seen a 43% increase in the downtown population aged 25 to 44, according to the International Downtown Association.

The museum is a connector in that it is more than just a place to see art. It is a place to connect with others through exhibits and family programs. Its mission is to make art and learning accessible, whatever the circumstances. The NSU Art Museum partners with the City of Fort Lauderdale to offer all residents free admission on the last Sunday of each month, and with support from Broward Health, the popular Free Starry Nights are back, offering all visitors free entry on the first Thursday of each month. All children 12 and under are still free, as are Food Assisted Families (SNAP). These initiatives are generously supported by the museum’s volunteer board of trustees, corporate and individual donors, and local foundations, including the Community Foundation of Broward and Funding Arts Broward.

At its core, the NSU Art Museum embodies all that is needed to provide a strong cultural and artistic foundation and a platform for developing a thriving and culturally rich community. As we continue to grow as a city, connecting and celebrating the arts must remain central to Fort Lauderdale’s strategic and sustainable growth.

Francie Bishop Good is Chair of the Board of Governors of the NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale.

About Madeline J. Carter

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