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Maria Fernanda Izaguirre
Creative Consulting Firm

ArteZanos— A platform to promote Venezuelan emerging artists

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

Sponsored by local beer brand Cerveza Zulia, arteZanos was a cultural platform created to spread the talent of emerging Venezuelan artists in Venezuela.

Pedro León Zapata Tribute Exhibition. Museum of Contemporary Art of Zulia (MACZUL). July 3rd through August 3rd, 2015. Maracaibo, Venezuela.

ArteZanos Platform Overview

I devised a transmedia platform to promote emerging Venezuelan artists. The project was sponsored by Cerveza Zulia, one of the brands from the local brewery, Cervecería Regional. Baptized arteZanos —with a capital Z replacing the s— the labeling alluded to the sponsoring brand while the word "artesanos" (craftsman) exalted the quality of work shown in something made with artistry.

arteZanos consisted of telling the story of originality and creativity across multiple platforms and formats using digital technologies linked to analog experiences. The model capitalized on the marketing and communication infrastructure of Cerveza Zulia to disseminate the talent of emerging Venezuelan artists nationwide.

The axis medium was the digital magazine (online until 2018), in which the best talents of the musical, artistic, and gastronomic scene were portrayed and showcased. Through the platform, a wide variety of artists benefit from being promoted in the press, radio, and television, as well as supported by the sponsorship of events and the programming of activities in cultural spaces in the main cities of the country. arteZanos offered sponsorship for creative projects, exhibitions, and pop-ups in galleries and museums, festivals and urban interventions, and BTL activations, among other formats and means.

arteZanos focused on registering the Venezuelan cultural scene and presenting the wide diversity of unique creative expressions happening in the country between 2014 and 2018 so that a wider audience could learn about the initiatives that made life in the city. The platform's design facilitated a cross-media immersive experience where the audience completed the brand storytelling by adding their originality to the brand epic.

Transforming a commercial infrastructure into a tool for promoting culture quickly gave a social twist to ArteZanos. Artists who otherwise would not have access to such massive media machinery now had coverage to promote their works widely. The platform sought to promote the development of urban artistic talent in Venezuela, ceding its advertising spaces to transform public space into a gallery of initiatives that shaped the local cultural scene.

Luis Legz's intervention for the arteZanos billboard, located in Las Mercedes, Caracas-Venezuela.

The billboards changed their traditional product-oriented content to support real people's originality. Every year, the program contemplated an open call for artists over 18 years old who wanted to join the platform. Calligraphic artist Luis Legz made the first three interventions on the emblematic ArteZanos billboard in Las Mercedes, Caracas. Later, other cities replicated the action with local artists. Emerging artists from all over the country received the benefits of having extensive press coverage, sponsorship of events and being massively showcased by the platform. ArteZanos supported national collective exhibitions, urban interventions, and ephemeral activations in public spaces, among other sponsorships.

Inaugural exhibitions

  • arteZanos, 11 artists paying tribute to Pedro León Zapata, Alternative Spaces Gallery, El Hatillo’s Art Center, Caracas, Venezuela, 2015. Curator: Maria F. Izaguirre.

  • arteZanos, 11 artists paying tribute to Pedro León Zapata, Popup show, Sala Ríos Reyna, Teatro Teresa Carreño, Caracas, Venezuela, May 21, 2015. Curator: Maria F. Izaguirre.

  • arteZanos, 11 artists paying tribute to Pedro León Zapata, Museum of Contemporary Art of Zulia (MACZUL), Maracaibo, Venezuela, July 3rd through August 3rd, 2015. Curator: Maria F. Izaguirre.

  • El Hatillo’s Windows: 21 artists paying tribute to Armando Reverón, El Hatillo’s town, public space intervention, November 13th through 15th, 2015, Caracas, Venezuela. Curator: Maria F. Izaguirre.

Curated Artists

Tribute to Pedro León Zapata

Efraín Ugueto, Monstroise, Okso, Daniel Mijares, Artesano, Béstialo Colapsus, Félix Zilinkas, Marco Malesani, Spo16, Alejandro O’Connor, Edgar Sánchez.

Tirbute to Armando Reverón, El Hatillo’s Windows

José Vívenes, Yonel Hernández, Eddymir Briceño, Gabriel García, David Pérez, Martín Rojas, CEPT, Juan Camilo García, Katherine Sultán Erminy, José Duque, Ciro, Rolando Rojas, Jorge González, Puchi Sonatore, Luis Herazo, Luis Arroyo Poleo, Isaías Villarreal, María Carolina Erminy, Ana Vanessa Urvina, and Daniel Hernández.

Virtual Gallery,

Miguel Vazques, Alexander Wright, Daniel Mijares, Gala Garrido, Starsky Brines, El Hase, Topo, Carlos Ávila, Jose Ignacio Benitez, Alain Gomez, Paramaconi Acosta, Luis Legz, Luis Lares, Flix, Miguel Braceli, Rody Douzoglou, among others.— Online Magazine

I devised and performed as the Editor in Chief of between 2012 and 2015. During this time, I wrote several articles for the magazine and provided the public with an infrastructure filled with inspirational community success stories.

The sponsor, Cerveza Zulia, wanted to promote originality among its public. Since the platform was socially committed, I devised the digital magazine to be a center for the Venezuelan cultural community, a participatory space that would reflect the vitality and diversity of the producers of the cultural scene. In other words, for a showcase to show their talents and projects. As an editorial line, I developed a framework so that artists, cultural promoters, and entrepreneurs feel supported and promoted, offering them marketing and communication tools that contribute to their efforts to show and raise awareness about urban culture and creative initiatives, particularly those that promote positive values for society. The platform aimed to ensure that people knew about, participated in, and were involved in developing local culture through events, festivals, exhibitions, and other activities.

As an editor, I orchestrated a complex network of collaborators, talents, and production teams nationwide. The online magazine included news, a calendar of events, interviews with cultural leaders and emerging talents, essays, and chronicles of the national cultural scene. The media platform gave space to artists, musicians, and writers but also to traditional and alternative cultural venues to connect with their communities. I conceived as a collaborative space where the same audience actively generated dialogues around originality and success stories. Quickly, became a benchmark for the collaborative creative spirit of a generation.

2017 was a challenging year for Venezuela. The country faced severe political crises that ended in many civil riots and the radicalization of an authoritarian, repressive regime. In 2018, many brands were forced to adapt their marketing campaigns to a low-profile message allowing them to coexist with the political climate and the economic debacle the country suffered and faces today. Sadly, ceased operating by the end of 2018.


Outsourced Advisory and Creative Services

From 2003 to 2015, I provided outsourcing and strategic advisory services for digital media to the traditional Venezuelan advertisement agency Oveja Negra. Over the years, we cultivated many clients and creative projects.

Read more about my journey in the advertisement industry.

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