Miami art collector and real estate developer Jorge M. Pérez has had a busy couple of months in philanthropic activities, establishing a $50,000 artist grant at his hometown Pérez Art Museum and donating $1.5 million in art and funds to the Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid.
In the latest news, Pérez will establish a new initiative, named the CreARTE Grants Program, to support arts and culture programs in Miami-Dade County and help make them more accessible.
“We wanted to create a fund to provide more funding for innovation, passion, creativity, and collaboration in the arts,” Pérez told ARTnews. “Artistic endeavors are economically hard. We want to create opportunities for artists to pursue their careers that helps narrow the gap.”
Pérez’s family foundation will award a total of $1 million in grants a year to various artists and organizations across disciplines in three areas of focus. Individual artists can apply for an Artist Fellowship/Residency grant, while artists and organizations can apply for an Arts Education and Access grant aimed at accessibility for children as well as a Spaces for Creation grant for operating costs for existing institutions or new ones to be developed.
“My family and I want to live in a community where the arts plays a dominant role,” Pérez said, noting that Miami’s art scene has “flourished tremendously” since the first edition of the Art Basel Miami Beach art fair in 2002 but “in a very precarious way.”
“In order for the arts to flourish, we need not just artists but students and children who might not otherwise have access to a museum or dance or theater to be supported as well,” Pérez said. “We want them to experience the power of the arts.”