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By Marijulia Pujol Lloyd
MACROFEST stands for Moda, Arte y Cultura Organizado – meaning fashion, art and culture – organized and it is returning to its Casco Antiguo roots to fuse together the loose ends of Panama’s creative community. It is becoming one of the most import events of its class in Central America. “Creativos” and those sympathetic to their efforts will flock to the capital city’s Old Quarter from Tuesday, March 12 through Saturday, March 16.
Different events featuring fashion runways, musical performances, paitings, digital art, photography and performance will take dominion over several spaces in the Old Quarter. Some of the stages for these events are themselves striving to be works of art in a new category that has been added to the event this year: installations.
MACROFEST is a production of Physical, the models agency and academy that also produces large-scale events like the upcoming International Film Festival of Panama (IFFPanama.org from April 11 o 17) with participation from the National Culture Institute (INAC).
Astrud Cordero, a partner at Physical and one of the creative forces behind MACROFEST said that Casco Antiguo was chosen as the venue for this event as it is a “magical place with iconic sites such as the Old Union Club, the Arco Chato and the Jesús Company (Compañía de Jesús) to name a few.” She added, “The Old Quarter is super fashionable today and is a fantastic tourist zone that soon will become a major cultural center for the region. It is the perfect scenario for any kind of contemporary art display.”
For Astrud, the fact that the festial brings young people together, eager to experience different trends and discover new talents that year after year emerge through MACRO is exciting. International artists will provide free workshops and group discussions on topics like photography and fashion.
What to wear?
Summer wear is in order for those looking to make a fashionable appearance at the festival, says Astrud. And ladies, forget the high heels. Stepping down into flats is justified by the event’s slogan “Dress happy, dress MACRO (Viste feliz, viste MACRO).” Weaing a piece by a Panamanian designer would be ever so fitting, as veterans of the nation’s fashion industry will share their latest collections alongside fledgling designers and international guest designers.
Fashion is booming in Panama thanks to events like MACRO and Fashion Week (also organized by Physical). She told The Visitor that standout talents include three young Panamanian designers: Vergara & Vergara, Antonio Feullebois and Geniesse Piers who successfully participated in the London’s Fashion Week thanks to the wide range of contacts and coordination proided by the Panamanian Embassy in the United Kingdom.
Take the bus in
MACRO organizers invite the general public to take part in these upcoming celebrations. For their comfort, drivers can park their cars on the western end of the Cinta Costera (near the fish market) and catch the free bus to the entrance of Casco Viejo (at the V Centenial Park) each day of the festival between 5:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. Entrance is free. For more information visit www.macrofest.com.