Apr 032024
 

Summer Wheat created this mural, Foragers, in 2020 for the Mint Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina, where it remains on view today.

From the museum about the work-

This monumental “stained glass” installation celebrates the resilience of North Carolina’s community of makers and providers and creates a space where our present-day Charlotte community can gather for contemplation and inspiration. Collaging sheets of colored vinyl, Wheat has created a towering, prismatic composition that fills all 96 windows of the Mint atrium with female figures of varied sizes, ages, shapes, and races performing acts of labor: fisherwomen, beekeepers, hunters, mothers, caretakers, farmers, bankers.

Following the tradition of stained-glass windows found in places of worship, Wheat offers a narrative of hope and resilience that can be enjoyed in a few minutes or studied over hours. Wheat says that “Foragers presents a tradition in which women were the original hunters, technologists, and artists. This array of women connected by geometric patterns echoes the psychological space of women supporting each other. They are marching together, connecting to creatures from land and water, demonstrating their inherent link to natural elements and to the intricate depths of the unconscious.”

The women in Foragers also call attention to the underrecognized populations who have cultivated the land that we now call North Carolina, from the indigenous tribes to the colonial settlers to the enslaved Africans and all those who have followed. The region is home to myriad traditions-ceramics, basket weaving, quilting, furniture construction, textile production-and The Mint Museum specifically celebrates that legacy through its collection and exhibitions. Foragers salutes North Carolina’s history of creativity and industry, both by those whose names we know and those who remain anonymous.

Her latest exhibition, Fertile Ground, is currently on view at Nazarian/Curcio in Los Angeles, closing on 4/6/24. It includes new paintings and three stone mosaic sculptures.

Mar 222024
 

Pictured is Jacob Hashimoto’s This Particle of Dust, on view at Tampa Museum of Art through 2025.  At first glance, it may seem monochromatic, but on closer inspection the blue color and star patterns begin to emerge on the darker pieces. It also changes depending on the viewer’s vantage point and the changing natural light.

From the museum about the work-

The artist takes inspiration from cloud formations and the cosmos, with each navy blue kite featuring star-like markings. Depending on the time of day and the natural light filtering through the atrium skylights, the kites will shift in color intensity. This Particle of Dust explores the visual poetics of light and dark, color and form, as well as space and architecture.

Created from over 2,500 handmade kites, This Particle of Dust is a site-specific installation and unique to the Tampa Museum of Art’s architecture. The installation represents Jacob Hashimoto’s exploration of abstract landscape and his interest in blurring the boundaries between painting and sculpture. This Particle of Dust evokes the experience of observing the night sky through various cloud clusters. Thousands of transparent and opaque white discs hang suspended from a bespoke armature. Navy blue kites, imprinted with white and cerulean blue star patterns, hang amidst the cloud shapes and catch the light as the sun rises over the Museum and dips into the horizon over the Hillsborough River. Depending on one’s vantage point, either from the lobby, stairwell, or galleries, the experience of This Particle of Dust shifts—from below the cloudscape appears to drift into the sky while at eye-level the viewer looks directly into the stars.

Hashimoto began making kite sculptures twenty-years ago while an art student in Chicago. Inspired by traditional Chinese kite making in the city of Weifang, where the artform of sculptural dragon kites originated, Hashimoto has made hundreds of thousands of kites from Japanese paper and resin. He appreciates kites as a universal object of joy that is recognized across the globe. Transformed into monumental artworks, Hashimoto’s kites convey happiness, wonder, and serenity.

Below is Tampa Museum of Art’s video of the artist discussing this installation.

Hashimoto is also showing several wall-mounted sculptural works for his solo exhibition, Fables, at Rhona Hoffman Gallery in Chicago. It will be on view until 4/20/24.

Feb 262024
 

Willie Cole, “American Domestic”, 2016, Digital Print

Tom Laidman, “Broadway”, 1993 and “Bois Ma Petite”, 1999, Lithograph on paper

Currently on view at Akron Museum of Art is RETOLD: African American Art and Folklore, a collection of art from the Wesley and Missy Cochran collection, organized into themes exploring aspects of African American history and culture. The show features many well known and lesser known artists including Amiri Baraka, Beverly Buchanan, Willie Cole, Trenton Doyle Hancock, William Pope.L., Tom Laidman, Jacob Lawrence, Alison Saar and more.

From the museum about the exhibition-

African folklore has been around as long as humankind, and the African diaspora in America has added new dimensions to its rich history. African American folk stories teach about culture, the mysteries of life, and the survival of a race of people bought and sold who continue to thrive in an unjust society.

“RETOLD: African American Art and Folklore” focuses on four themes: Remembering, Religion, Racialization, and Resistance. These themes provide a comprehensive retelling of the works featured in the exhibition. In many of the pieces, the artist’s muse connects closely with stories that have been told generation after generation. Folklore texts are featured throughout the space as a means to retell a richer, deeper story of African American culture.

There are more than forty artists represented in this exhibition, all holding one similar truth: their story of joy and struggle in the African American experience.

In addition to the artwork, there is also an educational video produced by Josh Toussaint-Strauss of The Guardian that explores the misconceptions about Haitian Voudou that is worth a watch.

How ‘voodoo’ became a metaphor for evil

Jan 292024
 

Whimzeyland, the “Bowling Ball House”, is a local landmark located in Safety Harbor, Florida, created by artists Todd Ramquist and Kiaralinda.

About the house from their website

In 1985, they purchased the beige house on Third Street in Safety Harbor, Florida. They traveled everywhere, actively seeking out inspirational and unusual places. Inspired by these travels, they began transforming their house. One of the earliest additions were the wooden triangles to the eaves of their house. The beige house became bold in color, too.

One day, they went to a flea market and saw a sign that said that anybody could take 10 free bowling balls. They took the bowling balls and began painting and placing them around the property. This is how they became known as the bowling ball house of Safety Harbor.

Todd and Kiaralinda even branched out of decorating their home, creating two different art cars, designed a restaurant, and making public sculptures, among other things. They began calling themselves the Whimzey Twinz because they work together on all of their projects.

Their travels soon included visits to folk artists and artists that they met at their shows. These friends visited them, too. Todd and Kiaralinda’s bowling balls inspired many of them. They would create bowling balls for Todd and Kiaralinda, who got so many of these works from artist friends that they started a gallery in their home. They created a “Call for Balls” which made a lot more of these art works roll into their home. Today, they have over 80 bowling balls from various artists around the world and people still bring them bowling balls as gifts.

If you are in the area, make sure to also stop by Safety Harbor Art and Music Center (SHAMc), a nonprofit they opened in 2017. It has an art gallery and shop, and hosts music events and art classes as well.

 

Dec 172023
 

The Arts Annual at Creative Pinellas is always a great way to see what the artists in the area are creating. For 2023’s larger than ever edition, there is also a separate space for a video program that includes short films, theater productions, poetry readings, musical performances and more.

Artists included in the exhibition-

Tatiana Baccari, Elizabeth Barenis, Christina Bertsos, Daniel Barojas, Chomick + Meder, Courtney Clute, Neverne Covington, Sheila Cowley, Patricia Kluwe Derderian, Nikki Devereux, Javier T Dones, Dunedin Music Society, Sara Ries Dziekonski, Sarah Emery, Roxanne Fay, Jean Blackwell Font, John Gascot, Denis Gaston, Mason Gehring, Donald Gialanella, Jim Gigurtsis, Kevin Grass, Sheree L. Greer, Jason Hackenwerth, Steph Hargrove, Patrick Arthur Jackson, Reid Jenkins, Kenny Jensen, Charlotte Johnson, Victoria Jorgensen, Steven Kenny, Candace Knapp, Akiko Kotani, Teresa Mandala, Cora Marshall, Carol Mickett & Robert Stackhouse, Miss Crit, Mark Mitchell, Chad Mize, Desiree Moore, Zoe Papas, Gianna Pergamo, Rose Marie Prins, Gabriel Ramos, Babs Reingold, George Retkes, Heather Rippert, Ashley Rivers, Marlene Rose, Ric Savid, Tom Sivak, Sketzii, Emily Stehle, Rachel Stewart, Erica Sutherlin, Takeya Trayer, Judy Vienneau, Kirk Ke Wang, Angela Warren, and Joseph Weinzettle

The show is on view until 12/31/23.

Below are some additional selections from the exhibition.  

Reid Jenkins, “Holding Court”, Acrylic

Candace Knapp, “What the Blue Heron Sees” and “The Light Within” Acrylic on canvas

Daniel Barojas, “Future Ancestor”, Gouache, acrylic, gold leaf on canvas and “Future Ancestor #3”, Gouache and resin on paper

Rachel Stewart, “Caribbean Currents” Colored pencil, oil stick and collage on Archers archival paper; “Under a Different Sky”, Wall installation Painted relief wood construction with cooper and mixed media materials; Printing Ink and collage on rice paper

Mark Mitchell, “The BurgHive”, Acrylic on Hexagonal canvases

Sketzii,”Out of the Pink Concrete”, “Reclamando Mis Raices” and “A Señora’s Dream”, Acrylic on canvas

Steph Hargrove, “Catch You Later”, Acrylic paint, paper on canvas

Marlene Rose, “Three Bell Tower”, Sandcast glass and “Map Triptych” Sandcast glass

Heather Rippert, “Shakti” (center) and “Hawk 1, 2, and 3”, acrylic on canvas

 

 

Dec 072023
 

V.J. Hagenbuckle, “On Mars”, 2020, Oil on canvas

Paintings by V.J. Hagenbuckle

There are many incredible artists living and working in the Tampa Bay area and quite a few of them also teach. Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art in Tarpon Springs is currently showing work by faculty from the Visual Arts department at St. Petersburg College. In addition to a statement about their work, each faculty member also contributed their teaching philosophy.

Artists included in the exhibition- Jonathan Barnes, Nathan Beard, Ragan Brown, Mason Gehring, Barton Gilmore, Kevin Grass, Marjorie Greene Graff, Jennifer Guest, Jim Hagenbuckle, Elizabeth Indianos, Kim Kirchman, Michaela Oberlaender, Krishna Sadasivam, and McKenzie Smith.

Tonight, 12/7, Jim Hagenbuckle will be giving a talk at the museum at 6pm.

This exhibition is on view until 12/17/23.

Michaela Oberleander, “Bleed Out”, 2010, Acrylic on canvas

Kim Kirchman, “Cultivating What Might Be Lost”, 2022, Terra cotta with slip transfer

Work from Nathan Beard’s “LIFE LINES”

Nathan Beard’s description of this recent personal and intriguing project (pictured above)-

The Memory Map works on view here are my very newest attempt at understanding the role that fallible memory plays in the shaping of culture and self. These small watercolor studies are Phase II of LIFE LINES, a grand 3-part project in which I am examining my family’s memory of themselves and making artwork that tells their story. I plan to collect all of these studies into a singular book that can be handed down through the generations, or perhaps even preserved in a museum for everyone to see.

To create Memory Maps, I have created a survey for each family member. I ask them some general genealogy questions, since this survey will also function as a historical record, including their three favorite colors. I then ask them to try to remember each year of their life, from birth til now, and assign a rank between 0 and 5 for a) how clear their memory of the year is; b) how important that year was for them; c) how “good” or “bad” the year was. I add these columns together to get an “Accumulative” data set that I use to create a skeleton composed of alternating pentagons and hexagons that rotate as they expand. This part is important since it incorporates movement through time and space as we grow outward. Using the fact that our life’s journey always wavers, I then connect the points and end up with a “map” that resembles the cross-section of a tree, and contains all the metaphors associated with tree rings and natural growth cycles.

The most important visual development presented itself with Cate Clark, where I allowed myself the freedom to incorporate representational imagery. I asked my wife about her favorite place ever, and she surprised me with the family trip we took to Letchworth State Park in upstate NY. I found a picture from that trip with our daughter Vera standing at the edge of wood, and proceeded to paint that memory in resemblance of an antique plate. I also allowed myself the freedom to stray away from the tree ring aspect, while still using the data skeleton to place the bursts of color.

For more information, his artist talk is available here.

Work by Jonathan Barnes

Sculpture by Jonathan Barnes

Sculpture by Jonathan Barnes

Soda/Salt Fired stoneware by McKenzie Smith

Acrylic on canvas paintings by Mason C. Gehring

Relief and silkscreen by Marjorie Greene Graff

 

Artists continue on page 2.

Nov 092023
 

The University of Tampa’s Scarfone/Hartley Gallery is currently showing the creatively displayed B.A.S.K.: Because Art Should Kill, work by Aleš Bask Hostomsky aka BASK. The exhibition also allows visitors a chance to participate by adding their own marks to a wall in the show.

From the gallery-

Known for his iconomorphic revisitation of contemporary images, BASK’s work highlights the transformative ability of hybridization. Offering layered deconstruction and reconstruction, each piece pushes viewers to look anew at culturally infused images and text, in order to consider what they say about the viewer and the culture that developed them.

BASK’s bricolage style takes the known and familiar, the distressed and destroyed, and merges them to create windows through which visitors can explore places of unanchored interpretations and ask a multitude of questions of the piece and of their interpretations.

This exhibition closes 12/15/23.

 

Nov 072023
 

Featured artist at Art Harvest- Michelle Mardis

Paintings by John Maurer

Paintings by John Maurer

The weather this past weekend was perfect for enjoying two big outdoor art events in the Tampa Bay area- the annual Art Harvest juried art show in Dunedin and the autumn edition of the biannual Art in the Yard event in Gulfport (the next one is next year in March).

Wendy Boucher’s collages made entirely of paper on canvas

More work by Wendy Boucher

Linda Heath’s work

Linda Heath (work above) uses the Gyotaku technique to make prints from the fish she catches in the Gulf of Mexico.

Below are a few artists from Art in the Yard-

A homemade sign from Art in the Yard

Art in the Yard is a great way to interact with local Gulfport artists and to see their creations. Stopping at the home of The Oiseaux Sisters (Susan Andrews and Carolyn Fellman), is a journey into their whimsical world. The head above was filled with little cards with their website and a different word, like a fortune, on each. My card read “Surrender”. All around their property you can find work hidden among the vegetation, on walls, and in among tables of materials they use for their work.

Outside at The Oiseaux Sisters’ home

Outside at the The Oiseaux Sisters’ home (the upper left work is a recreation of an image of Tallulah Bankhead turned into a movable figure)

Mixed media works by Dorian Angello

Jayne van der Voordt’s house had lots of fun decorated mannequins and mannequin body parts

 

Nov 042023
 

Jenn Ryann Miller’s charming creations, seen above, are currently on view at Tempus Projects in the Kress Contemporary building in  Ybor City for her solo exhibition, Hobby House.

From the gallery-

Hobby House– where art meets self-indulgence, subversion meets humor, and creativity meets absurdity. With ceramics, sterling silver, a little photography and a lot of gemstones Hobby House presents objects that are meticulously crafted for no good reason other than looking fabulous. Hobby House contemplates the places and practices of art making with humor, irony, and a little wit.

Jenn Ryann Miller explores materiality and aesthetics through sculpture and painting. With a background in functional ceramics, her work subverts tradition and process through the experimentation with oblique materials and forms. Miller has been part of numerous solo and group exhibitions in Florida and the United States. Originally from Connecticut, she received a BFA from the University of Connecticut and MA from the University of South Florida. Miller currently teaches ceramics at the University of South Florida.

In another of the Tempus Projects gallery spaces is Justin Myers‘ exhibition, What Did We Use To Say, seen below, which uses collage along with a video and sound installation to explore the concept of memory.

From the gallery and artist-

What Did We Use To Say? Trying to remember things from the past from distorted and fragmented memories. Is that really how it happened? With intention, the mind has the ability to erase just as easily as it does create. The mind decides what stays and what gets purged for the new. Are you in control? Or is the subconscious doing as it pleases? In this work, I explore deconstruction, recomposition, and sampling, and their impact on memory and perception.

Justin Myers, a Tampa Native, is a member of music projects Justin Depth, Alien House, and Diamond Man. He also is the co-founder of Tampa-based record label, Image Research Records.

Justin studied printmaking at HCC in Ybor City and began experimenting with sculpture and installation-based works during his time there. Myers finds inspiration from discarded imagery, random thought, and spontaneous actions. Over the last 10 years, Myers has participated in numerous exhibitions at Tempus Projects, including the T-shirt shows, Mix Tape Show, Return to Sender, and an offsite window installation as part of a partnership with Downtown Tampa and more. In 2020, Myers partnered with his brother, Jeremy Myers on a virtual exhibit with Tempus Projects titled, “One Day of Perfect”. Justin has been involved with Tempus Projects since his music project Alien House made its debut performance in November of 2011.

Both of these exhibitions are on view until 12/14/23.

Oct 282023
 

Installation by Edgar Sanchez Cumbas

The Ybor City Arts Tour was last week and was a great way to check out the many spaces currently in the Ybor City area. The Kress Contemporary building with its multiple galleries, artist studios, performance space (The Fringe Theatre), and microcinema, was definitely a highlight.

The above images are of sculptural work by Edgar Sanchez Cumbas (he was also in the Department of Contemporary Art group show in the same building). It is just one of the rotating works you can find while walking around the space.

Below are some selections from the event.

Kim Radatz opened her space, currently showing an installation focused on the “C” word.

Screen Door: An Ybor City Microcinema is always showing interesting films from a variety of genres. Pictured are the seating area and the movie posters lining the hallway outside of the film viewing area. For the art tour they were showing past Flex Fest short films.

On the third floor are a large group of artist studios with several walls hanging work by many of the artists.

Work by Jon Pannier

Sculpture by Eileen Goldenberg

Polaroid work by Brian Pannier

Lots of great work by the three very different artists that make up the Y3K Collective- Jon Pannier, Eileen Goldenberg, and Brian Pannier, seen above.

Work by Juan Espinosa (left) and Ashley Cantero (right) of Dluance

Inside Dluance

Creative space Dluance is run by visual artist Ashley Cantero and music producer/ graphic designer Juan Espinosa.

Paintings by Marilyn Binder Silverman

Paintings by Eilzabeth Fontaine-Barr

The work above is from the painters Marilyn Binder Silverman and Elizabeth Fontaine-Barr who share their studio space.

Painting by Karol Batansky

Self taught painter Karol Batansky just moved in to her new studio from the Ybor Art Colony which is closed while currently being renovated.

Mixed media artist Chase Parker makes a variety of work, including the unique sculptures pictured above.

Ron Watson creates highly detailed drawings at his Shades of Gray Studio.

Below is one of the common spaces filled with work by a selection of artists. It’s always worth a trip up from the 2nd floor galleries even if most of the artists are not in their studios to see what’s new.

Work by Jenal Dolson (left) and Michael Jones (collage, right)

The next post will focus on three spaces outside of Kress Contemporary that were also part of the tour.