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Wynwood Graffiti by Bike tour brings cyclists, communities together

A bike tour through Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood is being organized to shed light on the culture of graffiti and urban art.

RODOLFO ROMAN
SPECIAL TO THE MIAMI HERALD
South Florida cyclists can take an artistic bike excursion in Wynwood on Saturday.
The second Graffiti by Bike tour will feature a trip around the Wynwood Arts District highlighting homegrown and world-class graffiti. The three-hour tour starts at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Allapattah Metro Station, 3501 NW 12th St. The event is free and open to riders of all ages.
Tour organizer Olga Cano said graffiti is just like any other artwork.
“Graffiti, street art and urban art are all types of art that, unlike other forms of art, is readily available to everyone at no cost and without discrimination. This is what makes it so special,” Cano wrote in an e-mail.
The 4.1-mile tour route concentrates mainly on the Wynwood Arts District in northeast Miami. Some of the artworks are sanctioned by the property owners; others are not, tour organizers said.
Organizations like the Open Streets Project, an organization aimed at providing access to people-powered traffic by temporarily closing streets, and the community group Emerge Miami, are putting the event together. Cano and Dario Gonzalez will serve as tour guides.
Tourgoers will also learn about the artists’ messages and the culture of graffiti and urban art.
The tour will include sites promoted by two urban art groups, Primary Flight and Wynwood Walls. The tour will include 50 works of art.
Because of the location and the industrial zoning of the area, Wynwood has become a popular area for many local graffiti artists, Cano wrote in an e-mail. In 2007, Primary Flight was formed to allow graffiti artists to paint legally. Graffiti has been a feature of the area since the 1970s, she said.
Cano said graffiti signifies Wynwood.
“In the case of Wynwood, the graffiti and urban art that we are being exposed to is serving its purpose by beautifying buildings, which would’ve otherwise been gray walls, and by making our city an international hub of art showcasing some of the world’s best known graffiti, mural and urban artists known,” she said.
Organizers recommend checking tire pressure, lubrication on chains and breaks on participants’ bicycles. Also, sun block and water is suggested.
Aside from promoting health, Cano said the bike tour unites communities.
“It is a simple and effective way to build community engagement and healthy lifestyles,” she said.
For information, call 305-283-0255.

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