Tuesday, July 19, 2011

2nd Saturday Gallery Walk, Part I

Pinkfiddle Jazz Trio playing at Florida Craftsmen

Every 2nd Saturday of each month there's a gallery walk in St. Pete. Saturday the 9th of July, was the most recent one. I began at Florida Craftsman Gallery, where they had the Pinkfiddle Jazz Trio, an all female band providing beautiful live music in the gallery space.

Florida Craftsmen main counter.

Arts Lofts main hallway.

Directly one floor above the Florida Craftsmen Gallery are the Arts Lofts, a warren of 18 artists' studios of varying sizes, most small. I've been to many of these open studio evenings, but have not written about them because there's no cohesive show, only open studios with finished works and works-in-progress. This time I decided to choose a handful of the 18 artists and show them and their work here.

Sheree Rendell, "No Go"

Sheree Rendell [Link] has a studio in a back corner of the Lofts. Originally from Detroit, she has an MFA in painting from Wayne State University. She is also a certified teacher. She's also had her own gallery since 2009. In her studio was a series of paintings, the better part of a coherent show/body of work about her cross-country migration from Detroit to St Petersburg.

Sheree Rendell, "Not in Kansas"

As an expatriate, these works brought to my mind the sense of displacement, cultural and geographic reorientation, and all the human things that to along with moving after living in one place for a long time.

Sheree Rendell, "Ice Road"

Joe Walles in his darkroom/Studio/gallery.

Joe Walles is the photo editor at the St Petersburg Times. His photographers work mostly in digital, but Joe's personal work is done with Leicas, film and manual focus lenses. He is a classic street photographer, in the tradition of Robert Frank, Gary Winogrand, Henri Cartier-Bresson and many others. His work is thin-slice seeing, many of them like the beat of a hummingbird's wing, and at the very limits of human awareness and the equipment's capabilities. Some are slower, the result of deep insights. Next gallery walk, I strongly suggest stopping by and looking carefully at Joe's work. If he talks, be sure to make time to listen.

Photo by Joe Walles

Photographer Brian James

Brian James is a photographer who does a wide variety of work, from models to landscapes, all well and with his distinctive signature style.

Rebecca Skelton

Rebecca  Skelton is a renowned artist working in a variety of media, including drawing, painting, sculpture, jewelry and more.
She considers herself an abstract artist, according to her artist's statement, but figures abound in the work. It is process oriented, often clearly spiritual, and feminine. She has taught at University of Tampa, St. Petersburg College, USF St. Petersburg, and Eckerd College as well as for the Morean Arts Center, Creative Clay, Youth Arts Corps, and the Dali Museum. Ms. Skelton has donated art, jewelry, and sculpture to raise money for numerous causes including the Salvador Dali Museum, American Stage, Tampa Aids Network, CASA, Family Resources, Family Services and Bayfront Hospital.

About a month ago, I ran into her at University of Tampa's Studio-f assisting in the printing of Mickett and Stackhouse's show there. I reviewed at least one of her works shown at C Emerson Fine Arts last year.

Rebecca Skelton, Black Painting.

Rebecca Skelton, "Weeping Woman"
On the right is one of Rebecca's "Black Paintings". It's very difficult to photograph because it changes texture/reflections with minute changes in point-of-view, giving the surface a mercurial quality. Consider this to be but one possible facet of this work. Treat yourself and go see it in person. It is presently standing against a row of other paintings just to the left as you enter her studio. This one had a beautiful sense of aspiration and sensuousness about it. On the right is "Weeping Woman", a sculpture, the type of work Ms. Skelton's known best for, she told me. It is an iconized, stylized bust of a woman, beautifully done.

Rebecca Skelton, Jewelry

A close-up of some pieces of jewelry by Rebecca Skelton. In spite of the excellence in all this work, my favorites are her drawings, which are exquisite.

On the left is Betsy Orbe Lester, a painter with a studio at Art Lofts. I had the pleasure of a romp of a conversation with her covering a lot of ground. She has an MFA and has taught at Eckerd College as an adjunct professor.  She is shown on the left, standing before three works in progress, having to do with transition and passages.

Congratulations to the Arts Lofts for putting together a great open house for the gallery walk.

Florida Craftsmen is at 501 Central. The Art Lofts are above, the entrance is at 10 Fifth Street N.

End Part I

1 comment:

  1. Luis, Thanks for this blog post! I just saw it now! Better late than never! LOL Thank you so much!
    Sheree Rensel