ST. PETERSBURG (FOX 13) – St. Petersburg is continuing its push to be the first U.S. city with a Cuban consulate.
City leaders are showcasing the art work of a famous Cuban artist in an effort to warm up to the nation’s government.
Michel Mirabal is known internationally; his work being featured by U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry.
Mirabal usually uses flags as a centerpiece for his work. He is working on a mural in St. Pete’s warehouse art district, which will be completed Friday, and features a coming together of the American and Cuban flags.
“This community has a good relationship between my countries – Cuba,” Mirabal said.
City leaders in St. Petersburg have been working for more than a year on their campaign to be Cuba’s choice for a consulate. Mayor Rick Kriseman has visited the country twice. Joni James, CEO of the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership says art exports from Cuba would be one benefit a consulate would bring.
“They [Cuba] are aware of everything that’s happening,” James said. “Having someone like this in town – showing him some hospitality, showing him that we are open to exhibiting his work – it just helps to build that relationship and it lets them know we are sincere in this effort.”
Mirabal’s mural will be unveiled Friday at Art Xchange’s Soft Water Studios.
Dan Matics, FOX 13 News
September 20, 2016