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Puerto Vallarta News NetworkVallarta Living | Art Talk 

4th Festival Will Splash San Miguel with Art & Events

April 29, 2015

The fourth annual SMART - an eclectic and visionary art festival in San Miguel de Allende - will paint this jewel in the crown of colonial Mexico with the works of hot contemporary artists from May 29-31, 2015.

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico - The fourth annual SMART - the exciting and imaginative San Miguel art and design festival - will paint this jewel in the crown of colonial Mexico May 29 - 31, 2015 with exhibits of the works of hot contemporary artists, art tours in private homes, an art evening at historic Casa Dragones, cocktail parties, a DJ dance party - and, for the first time, an art intervention in the streets of San Miguel and a marketplace of Mexican designer products.

The three chic boutique hotels in San Miguel that co-founded the festival - Hotel Matilda, Dos Casas and L'Otel - again are jointly sponsoring the three-day cultural happening that focuses on contemporary art and design. The three hotels are offering a package that includes accommodations and all of the activities and events of SMART 2015, including an art showing at each hotel with a cocktail reception.

"This is a very special year for both Hotel Matilda and SMART, which in just a few years has become one of the most high-profile art festivals in Mexico," said Hotel Matilda Director Bruce James. "Matilda is celebrating its 5th anniversary as an art-centered hotel and a key to our championing of leading contemporary artists has been our support of and participation in SMART."


The art at this year's festival will be curated by Alejandro Sordo and directed by Sergio Sanchez De Paris, a leading art impresario from Cuernevaca who oversees three galleries, the Talleres Sanchez Navarro art workshops, public art interventions and large-scale sculpture projects. SMART 2015 will feature noted contemporary artists, including:

Amador Montes: His work reflects his childhood in Oaxaca immersed in art and indigenous culture.

Miguel Castro Leñero: Known for deconstructing elementary forms, figures, signs and symbols present in everyday life giving them new meaning.

Gonzalo Lebrija: Co-founder and co-director of the Office of Artistic Projects, he lives and works in Guadalajara.

Pedro Friedberg: Considered the last of the Mexican Surrealists, Friedberg is the artist behind the world-famous hand chair.

Betsabee Romero: The Mexico City artist uses consumer objects such as cars and tattoos to comment on social culture; she has an installation in Hotel Matilda.

Boris Viskin: The cultures, landscapes and languages in his works reflect his youth spent in Israel, years in Italy where he began painting and return to his native Mexico.

Art Intervention
Injecting a powerful performance and visual component to the festival this year will be an art intervention in the streets around the three co-founder hotels and Casa Dragones. With the support of the Tourist Board of San Miguel de Allende, contemporary artists from throughout Mexico, working with vinyl, will fill San Miguel with spontaneous art work. And the creations will remain in the streets for a month.


Art Experience
Casa Dragones Tequila will hold a Contemporary Art Experience hosted by Patrick Charpenel, the noted curator, collector and former director of the Jumex Foundation of Contemporary Art in Mexico City. Mr. Charpenel will talk about Danh Vo, who has had one of the most prominent and illustrious careers on the international art scene in the last decade. He has exhibited his work at many of the world's most important institutions, from the Marian Goodman Gallery and Guggenheim Museum in New York to the Museée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, participated in the Venice Biennale and collaborated with some of today's most cutting-edge artists, curators, and galleries. The event will be held at the tequila brand's spiritual home, La Casa Dragones, the 17th-century stables of the legendary Dragones cavalry of San Miguel de Allende that played an important role in the war of Mexican independence.

DJ Dance Party
A highlight of SMART will be the pulsating dance party at Hotel Matilda, on May 30, orchestrated by an international DJ spinning exotic & sensual sounds.

Tour of Collector's Home
On a visit to the private home of noted art collector of San Miguel de Allende, art aficionados will sip cocktails and view his private collection of contemporary works.

La Lonja
Another first this year will be the La Lonja - Edition SMA, a two-day exhibition of products created by Mexican designers. Launched in 2010, La Lonja is a traveling event that takes place in a different location each time. Each edition is different with products from new designers.

Limited Edition Piece
A symbol of this year's festival will be brightly colored soccer ball balloons in a variety of designs created by different artists. A limited edition piece created by artist Chanok will be included in the SMART 2015 Package. The other designs will be available for sale at the festival, with 100% of sales benefiting Citizens for the Rights of the Arts. The concept behind the balloons was to create well-paid work for the inmates of a local prison, where the balloons are being manufactured, as well as provide support for the arts.

SMART 2015 Package

The 3 hotels have put together a two-night package that combines a guest room with all SMART events and activities. The package is $400 USD per night for two and includes:

• Entrance to an art exhibit, including a cocktail party, at each of the three hotels.
• DJ Dance Party at Hotel Matilda.
• Cocktail party and private showing at the house of a noted art collector.
• Art Experience at Casa Dragones.
• The limited edition soccer ball balloon by artist Chanok.

For more information and to book the SMART Package, contact:

Hotel Matilda: direct-dial +52 (415) 152-1015, toll free in the U.S. 855-MATILDA (855-628-4532), or info@hotelmatilda.com.

Dos Casas: Direct dial +52 (415) 154-4958 or (415) 152-0941, or info@doscasas.com.mx.

L'Otel: Direct dial +52 (415) 154-9850, in the U.S. 210-745-1457, or reservations@l-otelgroup.com.