Billionaire developer and art collector Jorge Pérez’s family foundation will give away $1 million in grants every year to bolster visual arts groups in Miami, the foundation said Monday.
The CreARTE Grants Program, spearheaded by the Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation in partnership with the Miami Foundation, will focus on providing support in three areas: artist fellowships and residencies, art education and access, and creative spaces.
Pérez, chairman and CEO of The Related Group, said the grants program is a part of his family foundation’s strategy to nurture Miami’s creative community. The announcement coincides with the 40th anniversary of the firm, he noted.
“As Related enters its 40th year, I feel even more compelled to give back,” he said in an emailed response to questions.
“From a very early age, my mother ingrained in me a love and passion for the arts,” Pérez, who was born in Argentina to Cuban parents, said. “She’d take me to the best museums in Colombia, Argentina and Cuba and I witnessed, first hand, the life-changing power of visual art. This experience laid the foundation for my life-long passion, and now, I seek to foster the same experience for my family as well as the broader community.
“Of course, there are many important issues affecting our community, but as a family, we’ve decided to focus our efforts on arts and culture organizations making Miami a more diverse and robust place to live.”
Information and grant applications can be found at the Miami Foundation’s website, miamifoundation.org.
The announcement of the grants initiative comes months after the Pérez foundation launched a pair of new annual art prizes and unveiled a $1 million gift to benefit 20 local non-profit groups focused on culture and the arts.
In March, the Pérez Art Museum Miami and the Pérez family awarded the inaugural $50,000 Jorge M. and Darlene Pérez Prize to American painter Christina Quarles. The unrestricted award recognizes accomplished early-stage contemporary artists for whom the money and recognition can have significant impact.
Earlier in the year, the Miami-based YoungArts foundation announced the Jorge M. Pérez Award, a $25,000 grant for an emerging artist who is an alumnus of YoungArts, which recognized high school-age artists from around the country.
PAMM is named after the developer, who made a gift of $35 million in art and cash to the institution. In 2016, he pledged to give the museum $15 million more in art and cash over 10 years to purchase Cuban art and has continued to support the museum with additional gifts