Sushisamba Presents Ginzatropicalia: Graffiti Gone Global 2008

GINZATROPICALIA: graffiti gone global

Trailblazing the way for fusion Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian concepts, SUSHISAMBA first expanded its culinary palate to include visual arts in December 2007 with the inaugural “GINZATROPICALIA: graffiti gone global” art show. Slated for December 5 to 7, 2008 during Art Basel Miami, the second annual edition has a new curator, a new location, a new vibe and above all, new talent.

Francesco LoCastro, South Florida’s ambassador of the national New Contemporary art scene including Lowbrow, Pop Surrealist and Street Art, will be at the curatorial helm of GINZATROPICALIA. The 3-day exhibition will take place at 3250 NE 1st Avenue, Suite 100 in Midtown Miami, the city’s emerging hub of art and design. With a fresh urban landscape as its backdrop, the progressive South American and Brazilian graffiti movement coupled with iconic Japanese illustration have infused GINZATROPICALIA with a breadth that situates Street Art among its contemporaries. Participating artists include: CENA7 (Michel Ramalho de Toledo), Thais Beltrame, Emol (Emerson de Oliveria Brito), Flip (Felipe Yung), Dres13 (André Greppi), LEBO (David LeBatard), Flavio Samelo, Brian Sensebe, Suiko and Rodrigo Villas.

GINZATROPICALIA is the brainchild of Shimon Bokovza, Concept Developer of SUSHISAMBA restaurants and Sugarcane Lounge, along with partners Danielle Billera and Matt Johnson. “Bringing art to SUSHISAMBA is something that is a natural evolution of our whole concept and experience,” says Bokovza. “For our sophomore year, we have developed a bigger and better program that incorporates many renowned and emerging faces in the art world. We would only call upon the best talent to execute a dream that was sparked with the inception of Art Basel.”

Derived from the Japanese pop culture district of Ginza and from Tropicalia, the radical 1960s art movement of Brazil, GINZATROPICALIA captures the changing landscape of Contemporary Art. The Surrealist Graffiti and Mural Art movement of São Paulo is a snapshot of the thriving genre that stems from a rich political, poetic history. Conversely, the clean and simplified lines characteristic of Japanese graphics bring a satiric dimension to the art form. Whereas graffiti first exploded in the United States in the early 1980s, it continues to surpass all musical, cultural and geographic borders: from urban tagging to curated exhibitions, Street Art comes in all shapes and sizes and by its very nature resists conformity.

With concept, comfort and cuisine unparalleled among the contemporaneous satellite shows, SUSHISAMBA is launching a pop-up restaurant open to the public throughout GINZATROPICALIA. Dubbed SUGARCANE Lounge in congruence with SUSHISAMBA New York and Las Vegas outposts, the ephemeral eatery will offer signature favorites including sushi rolls and small plates. The on-site robata grill, a feature shared only with the new Vegas Strip location, and pop-up concept is but a taste of the full-scale SUGARCANE Lounge that is anticipated to open in Midtown Miami in summer 2009.

“The Street Art movement is the new voice and global consciousness of the ascending youth culture,” said LoCastro. “Showcasing some of the finest talent from the capitals of Japan, Brazil, Peru and the United States under one roof marks the arrival of a long awaited, and very personal, endeavor for me and I am excited to be partnering with SUSHISAMBA to bring GINZATROPICALIA to life.”

For the past decade, LoCastro has been South Florida’s thoroughfare to the New Contemporary art scene in the United States as both a respected artist and as the curator of intrepid exhibitions. Founder of Pop Art Studios, a creative services company and design studio, his group exhibition We’ll Make a Lover of You at ArtCenter/South Florida during Art Basel Miami 2006 received numerous industry accolades. LoCastro, who continues to push the boundaries of emerging art at home and abroad, is also featured among the 100 distinguished artists in the definitive book “Miami Contemporary Artists” (Schiffer Publishing in 2007). Recently named Executive Director of Gen Art’s 1st Annual Vanguard Art Fair, he joins SUSHISAMBA for GINZATROPICALIA 2008. More information about participating artists and exhibition program to follow.

Sushi Samba