Commissioner Launches in Miami

Today, new arts patronage initiative Commissioner opens to the public. Created to bring emerging collectors and local artists together around the stories unique to Miami, Commissioner uses a subscription revenue model to fund the commissioning of new work; and is creating new content in partnership with WhereBy Us—publishers of The New Tropic—and programming to radically expand the narrative around access and affordability in art collecting. Leading Miami-based gallery PRIMARY is Commissioner’s curatorial partner, and the effort is supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, through its Knight Arts Challenge.

“We want to normalize support in the arts and we’re starting with Miami, both to invest in this city’s artists and to explore the concepts inherently influenced by its issues, palette, materials and people,” said Dejha Carrington, the founder of Commissioner. “We will be putting new work in the hands of budding collectors to help them build their collection and buyer confidence, and are excited about designing events and storytelling with a diverse group of individuals to help dismantle barriers to arts access.”

Through Commissioner, local arts enthusiasts seeking to build their collection and learn more about collecting art and the artists in their community are invited to join at as a “Collector” before October 2, 2018. With only 40 spots available, Collector subscribers will collectively and directly contribute to the commissioning and purchase of original limited edition work by four local artists this inaugural 2018 – 2019 season. Miami native Typoe, whose recent projects include immersive installations for Brightline and Soho Beach House, has been selected as the first commissioned artist for this program, and will be hosting the Commissioner kickoff party on Tuesday, October 2 from 6 pm to 9 pm at “Tired of Eating Pigeons”, his solo exhibition at 49 NE 39th Street in the Miami Design District. On-site registration will be available to join at the Collector level (if spots remain), or guests can support as a Patron for access to special events; the kickoff is free and open to the public at

“It’s part of our mission to make art general in Miami, so that everyone can experience high-quality art where they live and work,” says Victoria Rogers, the vice president of arts at the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. “We share Commissioner’s vision of a future where arts patronage is second nature to locals in Miami, and where we, as a community, are more empathetic, aware of and closely connected to each other as a result.”

In 2017, Miami-Dade County of Cultural Affairs reported that nearly 41,000 jobs and $1.4 billion were generated by Miami’s non-profit arts institutions. Urban Miami residents have both the engagement capacity and the buying power to become sophisticated arts philanthropists, on a hyper-local level, through a variety of paths and with positive modeling.

“Commissioner is a much needed program in Miami,” says Books Bischoff, the founder and principal of PRIMARY. “We are proactively building bridges between young, strong entrepreneurs and our city’s creative community. Instead of waiting for blessings from the world of art, we focus on developing ground up relationships with Miami’s next generation of philanthropists.”

Through storytelling, commissioned artwork and intimate opportunities for connection, Commissioner aims to lower perceived barriers of entry into the art world and cultivate new customers—new patrons for the arts—that will, after a full season, be catalyzed into maintaining relationships with artists, purchasing new work on their own, and considering how their investment in Miami’s creative class impacts their personal quality of life and the opportunities available to their community. Join Now

Joanna DavilaCommissioner