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Gibson Guitar announced the launch of Miami Guitartown, the second installment of such an exhibit in Florida, which will take place throughout the city of Miami. Miami GuitarTown is a public arts project featuring ten-foot tall fiberglass Gibson Les Paul model guitars and a series of showcase regular size Epiphone Casino guitars artistically designed and painted by local and nationally acclaimed visual artists and placed throughout Miami in front of city landmarks, sponsor locations and other popular destinations for several months. Each guitar sculpture will be partnered with a celebrity and will be backed by a corporate sponsor. The project will unite the Miami art, music, and business communities behind the opportunity to raise proceeds for local charities.

The official Miami GuitarTown steering committee has been formed and will be responsible for aspects of planning, coordination and execution of the program in coordination with presenting sponsor Gibson Guitar. The official steering committee is comprised of the following:

  • Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman & CEO, Gibson Guitar
  • Manny Diaz, Honorable Mayor of Miami
  • Mary Downing, Starbucks Hear Music
  • Maggy Cuesta, Dean — Visual Arts, New World School of the Arts
  • Gabriel Aboroa, President, Latin Recording Academy, Inc.
  • Kapoor Harpal (MDT), Director Miami-Dade Transit
  • Kimberly Green, President Green Family Foundation
  • Ruth Shack, President Dade Community Foundation
  • Neil Crilly, Sr Exec Director, National Academy Recording Arts & Sciences
  • Erika Fleming, Miami International Univ. of Art & Design
  • Alyce Robertson, Exec Dir. City of Miami Downtown Development Authority
  • Maria Ruiz, Director Community Relations, Dacra Realty
  • Dora Diaz, Director of Accounts, The Bravo Group
  • Leila Cobo, Exec. Dir. Latin Content/Billboard Magazine
  • Lilia Garcia, Lilia Garcia & Associates
  • Vivian Donnell Rodriguez, Vice-Provost, Cultural Affairs & Resource Development at Miami Dade College


"As a growing international arts hub, it is very exciting to have Miami join the ranks of other major cities in hosting this wonderful project," said the Honorable Mayor Manny Diaz. The launch of the project also kicks off the official Miami GuitarTown "Call for Artists." Visual artists who are interested in becoming part of the project and painting one of the 10-foot sculptures to be put on display in the citywide event can pick up an application at the Gibson Guitar Entertainment Relations Showroom located at 180 NE 39th St., Suite 200, Miami, Florida 33137 between the hours of 11am-4pm weekdays. Deadline for completed applications is October 3, 2008 at 5pm EDT. Visual artists may also download the official application and template by visiting http://www.miamiguitartown.com./. Information regarding applications, official rules and regulations and general information can also be obtained by calling the official Miami GuitarTown hotline at 1-866-321-4213 or by emailing miamiguitartown@gibson.com. Once all applications are received by interested artists, the official steering committee will vote on the designs and notify each artist. Visual artists who participate will be included in large scale publicity campaigns, promotional events and catalogs.

"Miami is a dynamic international city and makes for the perfect backdrop for a project as colorful, exciting and innovative as Gibson GuitarTown," said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of presenting sponsor Gibson Guitar. "We look forward to helping the charities who will benefit from the project and combining the sounds of Miami with the artistry of South Florida."

The guitars will officially be unveiled in a massive citywide event in November and will complete a "tour" of the city in March of 2009. A Gala Auction event conducted by world-renowned Juliens Auctions will be held with all proceeds benefiting local charities which will be announced soon. The project is administered through the Gibson Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Gibson Guitar, which is dedicated to improving the quality of life through its support of the arts, education, health & welfare and environmental causes worldwide. Miami GuitarTown will also announce the project's official celebrity co-chairman in the next few weeks.

Individuals, organizations or corporations interested in sponsoring a Miami GuitarTown sculpture or guitar can contact the organizers by calling (305) 573-3523 or by emailing miamiguitartown@gibson.com. All sponsor benefits and levels are outlined on the official website or can be customized to suit a sponsor's interests and requirements. Each sculpture will be sponsored and corporate partners have the ability to help decide on the design and artistry of the sculpture as well as placement in the city. To download a tentative timeline of the project please visit the official website at www.miamiguitartown.com. The concept will have a huge impact in the community and provide enormous publicity and promotion for the popular City of Miami, as well as provide another interesting opportunity to attract tourists from around the world. Gibson is known worldwide for producing classic models in every major style of fretted instrument, including acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins, and banjos. Gibson's HD.6X-PRO Digital Guitar and the Gibson Robot Guitar represent the biggest advances in electric guitar design in over 70 years. Founded in 1894 in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and headquartered in Nashville since 1984, Gibson Guitar Corp.'s family of brands now includes Epiphone, Dobro, Maestro, Kramer, Steinberger, Tobias, Echoplex, Electar, Flatiron, Slingerland, Valley Arts, Oberheim, Sunshine Piano, Take Anywhere Technology, Baldwin, J&C Fischer, Chickering, Hamilton, and Wurlitzer. Visit Gibson's website or http://www.gibson.com/press/


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