So why stay? Moreover, why focus Whale & Star’s outreach programs on a milieu he clearly finds not only lacking in academic rigor, but also desperately seeking approval in all the wrong places?

“I love Miami’s sense of insecurity!” Martínez Celaya responds with a laugh. “A city with insecurity has potential. The reason San Francisco hasn’t produced anything culturally interesting for a long time is because it’s too selfsatisfied. The same is true of Boston. It’s very difficult to be an artist in an environment where people just want to get together and celebrate how great they are.” He pauses, now seemingly speaking as much about himself as any nascent art burg: “A city needs to be striving to become better than it is. Out of that friction something good gets produced.”


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