We at Florida Deaf Art Show (FDAS) are a nonprofit organization that promotes both emerging and experienced Deaf artists from the State of Florida. FDAS is committed to raising funds and awareness to benefit Deaf community programs in the cities that host our events. We believe in improving the quality of life for all members of the Deaf community, particularly when it comes to literacy education and the creative arts—both of which are crucial for Deaf students to flourish.
Our aim at FDAS is to promote the idea that “Deaf Can!” We strive to create an inclusive environment by using our art to build a bridge between Deaf and Hearing populations. When we provide a platform for Deaf artists to showcase their unique artwork, we are empowering the entire Deaf community. We fearlessly envision a future where the world is more accessible.
If we could convey one message to the world, it would be this:
AS LONG AS WE HAVE DEAF PEOPLE ON EARTH, WE WILL HAVE SIGNS. AND AS LONG AS WE HAVE OUR FILMS,
WE CAN PRESERVE SIGNS IN THEIR OLD PURITY.
— GEORGE VEDITZ
HISTORY OF FDAS
Our non-profit organization, Florida Deaf Art Show, was originally founded in 2013 under the former name, Orlando Deaf Art Show. It brought Dan Matamoros’ vision to life, creating a venue to showcase the work of Deaf artists, both emerging and established, and to expose the larger community to their talent. In less than 3 months, the first Orlando Deaf Art Show went live with the theme "Expression", specifically recognizing art as an added outlet of expression for Deaf individuals. With the innovation and passion of the other 4 members: Adam Ledo, Lissandra Clark, Lawrence Odum, and Barbara DeLacy-Keefe, the organization grew in popularity with our Florida Deaf artists and art admirer community. The shows were originally held at The Orange Studio, minutes outside of downtown Orlando.
The Orlando Deaf Art Show disbanded after its 2015 showing as it became cumbersome to accommodate the growing demands of providing a steady platform for the Deaf artist community. In 2016, Brian Steinhoff reached out to Dan Matamoros in hopes of salvaging the spirit of ODAS and together, over a slice of pizza at Lazy Moon, they rejuvenated the motivation for the show. The vision evolved into the Florida Deaf Art Show as it is known today, it is hosted once a year in different major cities of Florida. The Florida Deaf Art Show welcomed old and new artists again at The Orange Studio in 2017 to kick off its new journey.
Now, for a total of seven years, we’ve shone spotlights on Deaf artists within large Deaf communities throughout the state of Florida to support their talents while being committed to raising funds and awareness to benefit Deaf community programs in the cities that host our events. We serve to improve the quality of life for all members of the Deaf community by empowering them with opportunities to flourish.
Our team members at Florida Deaf Art Show volunteer time and skills to craft creative, tailor-made events for the populations we serve. We host at least 2 fundraiser events a year and a 2-day art show event annually. Florida Deaf Art Show serves over 400 individuals a year.
The original Orlando Deaf Art Show committee was committed to the success of ODAS and was generous in donating its proceeds to FDAS to carry on their mission.
Thank you for your innovation, hard work, and dedication to the Deaf community.
The Original Team of ODAS:
(left to right) Lissandra Clark, Dan Matamoros, Lawrence Odum,
Adam Ledo, and Barbara DeLacy-Keefe
OVER THE YEARS:
ODAS TO FDAS