845-252-6650 debra@debracortese.com


The Honey Queen detail of painting by Debra Cortese

detail of "The Honey Queen" painting by Debra Cortese

The 3rd and final Opening Reception for the TRIAD ART Exhibition with Debra Cortese, Karen Deilke and Pamela Palma is on Saturday, July 21st at VALMAR ART, 4150 SW 74th CT (in the Bird Road Art District), Miami, FL 33155.

Debra Cortese is exhibiting her new series titled, “Seeds of Intention”. Each piece is based on variations of a Flower of Life pattern and represents a positive meditation for the future of humanity in cooperation with nature’s energy.

“The Honey Queen” painting honors one of the smallest and most significant creatures on our planet, the bee. Cortese has dedicated this painting to long-time beekeeper, Mike Price of Bees-n-the-Keys as well as other compassionate beekeepers in Miami and all around the world.

Coconut Grove artist (and Founder of the Coconut Grove Drum Circle), Karen Deilke is exhibiting her vibrant and expressive “Hot Tropics” paintings.

Miami Beach artist, Pamela Palma is exhibiting her evocative fiber art works that incorporate uncommon materials including shredded one-hundred dollar bills, the delicious color interactions of hand dyed yarns, and textural elements.

Live Blues with Miami guitarist, Rob Moore – all at VALMAR ART during the monthly Bird Road Art Walk on Saturday, July 21st starting at 7 pm.

Triad invitation with more details here.

Valmar Art, 4150 SW 74th Ct, Miami, FL 33155

Healthy Eating in Miami

This post started as a comment to an article in this morning’s Miami Herald titled, “Buying clubs of fresh produce gaining popularity” but since it is something I’m becoming more and more passionate about, decided to post on my blog as well.

I highly recommend the documentary film, “FRESH” to anyone interested in learning more about the viability and advantages of producing and consuming organically grown foods. Video clip below from “FRESH”

FRESH is a documentary featuring Michael Pollan, Will Allen and Joel Salatin which celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system.

Most of the fruits, veggies and meats available from our supermarkets are likely causing health problems because of the massive amounts of antibiotics, pesticides and processing that are required to mass-produce these foods.

Organically produced foods, those grown in nature on free-range farms (without pesticides, hormones or antibiotics) provide the most humane, vitamin, protein, and mineral rich foods possible.

Organic farming, Honoring the divine design of nature.
Instead of destroying the quality of the soil by constantly poisoning it with pesticides and fertilizers loaded with antibiotics, and diminishing the nutrients with continuous plantings, the gardens and fields are nourished and allowed to rest in natural cycles. Crops and livestock are regularly moved from field to field and a balance in nature is maintained.

There are many organic farms and producers in our South Florida region and I hope, many more to come. I’d like to compile a respectable list of resources and would greatly appreciate any farms, producers, providers, markets, etc. that you know of. Please let me know of others to add to this list:

Urban Oasis Project
Guara Ki Eco Farm
Bee Heaven Farm article
Redland Organics
Organic Produce Buying Club of South Florida
Annie’s Organic Buying Club
Glaser Organic Farms
Organic Farms & Growers of Miami-Dade & Broward Counties
Paradise Farms
Eat Wild
Miami Vegetarian Guide
Urban Homestead Resource
Bees ‘N the Keys
Earth Learning
South Miami Farmers Market
Doral Farmers Market
Coconut Grove Farmers Market
Farmers Markets List on Yelp
The Market Company

If you haven’t already seen it, check out FRESH a documentary film by ana Sofia joanes. It will confirm beliefs that current large food production systems are not providing healthy foods. It also provides an excellent model of sustainable, organic and economically viable farming and food production – not surprisingly based on the brilliant natural models of nature.

PS: I’m currently the caretaker for my own small, backyard veggie and herb garden. An annual undertaking that brings me balance and nourishment. Ahhhh…. dirt therapy at its best!

Wine, Food and Art pairing (South Florida)

photo: Schnebly Winery
Just read the latest Schnebly Winery newsletter and they’ve included an article on the annual “Dinners in Paradise” at Gabrielle Marewski’s Paradise Farms. This is a lovely, local, organic farm that’s renowned among top Miami chefs for providing the best in microgreens, heirloom tomatoes, herbs, edible flowers and more.

This season Paradise Farms is donating 16 Ready to Grow garden beds to 16 public schools through The Education Fund for their Plant a Thousand Gardens Collaborative Nutrition Initiative.

photo: Paradise Farms/Miami Victory Gardens

Schnebly Winery provided the dry Avocado Wine and their signature Category 3 Hurricane Vino for the Common Roots art exhibition that I co-curated with Arts At St Johns and I’m a definite fan of the Avocado Wine… surprisingly similar to a delicate chablis!

Paradise Farms is normally a private space, but during the “Dinners In Paradise”, you have the opportunity to come in, take a tour, enjoy a delicious meal and help a charity all at the same time!


It all relates. My art and custom designs are all about sharing the magic of nature’s energy. We are what we eat, drink and believe. There’s magic, memories, and balance in growing a garden, harvesting your very own vegetables and fruits and then preparing them and ideally, sharing a meal with friends and family. Bonus: here’s my Zingy Mango Salsa recipe!