Arts and culture are the heartbeat of Greater Fort Lauderdale, FL, from theater stages to art galleries and festivals drawing visitors of all ages and tastes. he arts have generated $386 million to the region’s annual economy, and Broward County’s support of creators has only increased over the years — ensuring there’s something for everyone under the sun.
To showcase the thriving arts and culture scene in Greater Fort Lauderdale, Oakland Park airbrush artist and muralist Avi Ram explored the community to camouflage models with paint into 10 destinations. The project, “Hidden in Plain Sight,” took him from the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center to the historic Bonnet House, high-energy Florida Panthers games, Flamingo Gardens, the serene Everglades Holiday Park, and more.
“I’ve lived here for 15 years and I learned so much about Broward County and Greater Fort Lauderdale places that I didn’t even know existed, and I learned the history about each destination,” Ram says of the art project. “It was very, very fun to learn.”
Fort Lauderdale is bursting with art, from the NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale and Broward Center for the Performing Arts in the downtown area to the historically Black neighborhood of Sistrunk. The community is home to the African American Research Library and Cultural Center, boasting more than 85,000 materials highlighting the African diaspora, the Ashley Bryan Art Collection, a 5,000-square-foot museum, and a 300-seat theater. New to the area is also Destination Sistrunk, an arts incubator hosting live music, art exhibits, theatrical performances, and other celebrations of Black culture.
Two other notable art hubs in Fort Lauderdale are the MASS District Music & Arts South of Sunrise and Flagler Village. The latter is undergoing major urban revitalization, with mixed-use spaces moving in to accommodate restaurants, housing, and retail space. The MASS District was a result of the spread of the former FAT Village and has since blossomed into the host of the monthly Fort Lauderdale Art Walk and a popular place for muralists to explore their craft.
In Wilton Manors, the city’s Sculpture Walk is a sort of scavenger hunt for visitors to explore the growing number of public art features. Following the “In Plain Sight” map, you can discover the whimsical “Popsicles” at Rachel Richardson Park, the dazzling “Thunderbunny” on loan from artist Hunt Slonem at Justin Flippen Park, or the heart-warming “Sweet Hearts” candy hearts. Wilton Manors also hosts an art walk every third Saturday, where visitors can peruse the city’s many art galleries, meet artists and creators, and snap photos in front of murals.
Monthly art walks are popular public events throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale, from the Hollywood ArtWalk every third Saturday; Old Town Untapped in Pompano Beach on first Fridays, where attendees can explore the Bailey Contemporary Arts Center and visit artist lofts; the Fort Lauderdale Art Walk every last Saturday in the burgeoning MASS Arts District; and the Dania After Dark street festival every month in Dania Beach. However, most art walks are on pause during the slower summer months.
Eye-catching sculptures are growing in the city of Tamarac, thanks to its “Museum Without Walls.” Located on Nob Hill Road between Commercial Boulevard and McNab Road, the program hopes to stop visitors in their tracks to enjoy the “Be Kind” sculpture or the bright but minimalist “Majestic Palm.” The nine public art works are also for sale, with 25 percent of proceeds going to Tamarac’s public art fund to help bring more art to the community.
Greater Fort Lauderdale is looking forward to the expansion of its arts scene further west with the West Broward Cultural Arts Center in Davie. With plans to open in 2026, the facility will be in the former Young At Art Museum, which is now located in the Broward Mall in Plantation.
With one of the most diverse communities in the country, our arts and culture scene reflects this with a yearlong dedication to theater, visual arts, public art installations, festivals, and the written word. Truly, the creative atmosphere makes Greater Fort Lauderdale welcoming to everyone under the sun.