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Miguel Paredes’ new mural `a landmark piece’ in Miami’s Wynwood Arts District

MIGUEL PAREDES’ NEW MURAL, `PULGHA WORLD,’ BRINGS A NEW ARTISTIC TWIST TO MIAMI’S WYNWOOD ARTS DISTRICT

BY RODOLFO ROMAN
Special to The Miami Herald
Taking an evening stroll through Miami’s Wynwood’s Arts District with his poodle, Canadian Brgron Jean came to a halt when one of the area’s latest art piece, Miguel Paredes’ mural titled Pulgha World, stood out.

“It’s beautiful,” said Jean, who is a painter. “I love it.”

Jean was one of many art lovers who admired the unveiling of Pulgha World, which translates to “Flea World” in Spanish.

(Flea is actually spelled pulga, but Paredes adds an “h” in his title.)

The piece was presented at Wynwood’s Second Saturday art walk recently.

A New York native, Paredes installed the 18-by-26-foot mosaic mural on the side of a building at 2399 NW Second Ave., which is the home of Mizrach Realty Associates and multiple art studios.

While the Wynwood area is known for its murals, graffiti and urban art, Jean said Paredes’ work has some different features than the others.

“It’s very detailed; it has great definition and design,” said Jean, who lives in Davie. “It looks like Japanese anime, which has a great influence.”

Pulgha World is made up of 550 tiles dedicated to bring variety and a splash of vibrant colors to the area’s urban streets.

It includes an iconic diminutive anime flea, which is part of Paredes’ concept for a children’s storybook, where the insect serves as an educational tool by promoting environmental conservation and green initiatives.

In the collage, the flea is a magical insect showcasing New York City’s skyline as a backdrop. Colorful flowers and birds, a geisha and three children spray painting are featured.

The children also appeared in his signature oil painting series Los Niños, a dedication to his kids.

“I wanted to have something unique,” Paredes said, while pointing at the mural. “I could have gotten on a scaffold and painted, but it wouldn’t have turned out like this.”

But the piece does have some of the Wynwood’s flavor as there is tag-style writing, which looks like graffiti.

Paredes’ friend, Ari Dispenza of Mizrach Realty Associates, approached the artist about the possibility of creating the mural about two months ago.

“It’s a landmark piece in the area,” Dispenza said. “There’s a lot of great ones out there. We are proud to have his piece on our building.”

The mural is a first for Parades in the area and served as a preview of his personal art gallery scheduled to open in Wynwood later in the summer.

Paredes is known for his crossover artwork. His style is pop art, oil painting and sculptures.

Aside from the art, Paredes, an urban impressionist, is also the owner and founder of PK Graphics, a multimillion-dollar printing company. A New York native, he developed his artistic skills during the early 1980s as a student at the city’s Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music, Art and Performing Arts. He later moved to South Florida and now lives in Pinecrest.

To put the mural together, Paredes sketched it on paper and later converted it digitally. Soon after, he printed the drawing on a large printing press using more than 500 tiles. It took four days to install the mural.

But Parades’ mural wasn’t the only artwork being highlighted at the Wynwood art walk. Several gallery shops opened to display their latest pieces. Paredes said the area is full of talent willing to be recognized.

“It is time for Miami to look at these artists who are designers and so forth because they can create and do more city projects,” said Paredes, who helps promote new artists.

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