Saturday, March 31, 2012

One 2 One @ Craftsmen Gallery

Teacher - student or mentor - mentee shows bring a different perspective to the world of art. Sometimes one sees direct connections, others more of a rebellious individuation against the teacher/mentor. Either way, there's influences there to be seen, and revelations as to how artists evolve.

The One 2 One exhibit.

Craftsmen Gallery describes itself as a "fine crafts art gallery". It was created by Louis and Elsa Freund in 1951. Incorporation came in 1977, still without a building. That came in 1986, and two moves later, it came to rest in its present location. Above the street level spaces is the Arts Lofts, with eighteen artists' studios. 

Helen Otterson, "Botanica Lilac"

University of Miami student Helen Otterson's "Botanica Lilac", made of ceramic, glass, and bronze is a study in contrasts. The lilac colors opposed to the mustards of the base, and the delicate plant form of the stem, leaves and flower compared to its burly-looking vase. Note that the flower is growing out of a slim crack in the base, which speaks to me of hope and potential.

Bonnie Seeman, "Pitcher and Tray"

Made of ceramic and glass, this ornate, technically vistuoso duo of pitcher and tray, by University of Miami professor Bonnie Seeman. The organic, botanical forms of these two works is spectacular. Almost impossible to see in the pictures there are tiny lilac flowers sparsely scattered along the sides of the pitcher.

Work by Carleton Haack

"Information Recovery Device, Brain Bomb", by Carleton Haack, a student at the University of West Florida is a conceptually explosive piece in this show. Daring, out-of-the-box and more than a little over the top, it exerts itself in a confident, authoritative manner. A bomb-shaped form, complete with winglets, is composed of several brains, looking like it is partially buried onto the surface it rests on.

Adam Shiverdecker, "Amphoria Series, 2 & 3"

University of West Florida Professor Adam Shiverdecker's duet of conceptual amphorae are like negative images of each other, with an exposed armature on the bottom of #2 (on left) and on top on #3.

Ted Camp, "Platter Six"

State College of Florida Professor Ted Camp's "Platter Six" is a porcelain piece, perhaps 24" in diameter. The color and textural interleaving of the glazes is exceptionally good. The subtle indents along the edge create tensions with what lies within its circumference.

Congratulations to all the professors and student artists, and to Florida Craftsmen for a good show.

 --- Luis

One 2 One @ Florida Craftsman Galleries - A mentor/student ceramic exhibit. Runs through May 26th. 501 Central Ave., St Pete. Free.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Photo Show @ Sake Bomb

The Sake Bomb

The Sake Bomb bar is a roomy hangout for mostly young local St Petersburgers. (burgians? burgites?). It has also become a gathering place for artists, specially on the sidewalk tables in the evening, where I need to spend more time. Recently, they opened a photo show. I couldn't find out who curated it when I was there. If anyone knows, please email me and I'll insert the name.

Tai Swank, "Fifty Million"

I don't know if the title refers to Utopia's Gangrene song. This is one kind that isn't zombie-ing before a glowing screen. It is a very romantic image, with the lure of the road and the future beckoning. The dead-center composition is spiced up by the highights on the wet areas and the laid-down cruiser.

Work by Jeremy Scott

A woman with a sexy figure and a pig's mask in hard light with the soon-to-be moved to the parking lot famous globe sign from the about to be redeveloped Liquor World site. A sexy, dressed-up pig? Lot of sensuous contrast there. A morning after comment?

Allison Sakiotis, "Cheese Grits"

Since the beginning of photography, signs have been a popular subject. Allison Sakiotis' Munch's sign, with the clouds rising behind it in the dark blue sky, along with the title, Cheese Grits", has strong graphics -- and gives me the munchies just to look at it.

Rachel Lambert-Jolley, "Sunshine State of Mind"/

 Rachel Lambert-Jolley's "Sunshine State of Mind" came across as a bit of a nostalgic look at the ambient local zeitgeist, reminiscent of 50's pictures of women with sunglasses on, but up to date.

Congratulations to all the photographers and the Sake Bomb for an eclectic show.

--- Luis

Thursday, March 29, 2012

This Gasparilla International Film Festival Weekend, March 29th - April 1st.

Gasparilla International Film Festival - Too much for me to go into here, dozens of first-rate movies come to Tampa. For information see here [Link].

Sand in the Vacuum MFA Exhibit @ USF - USF's graduating MFA class. Also winners of the 36th Annual Student Juried exhibit will be revealed. There will be an Arthouse opening next door with student artwork, live music, performance, and goodies to eat & drink. All at South Florida Contemporary Art Museum, 3821 Holly Drive, Tampa. 7-9 PM Friday. Free.

Creative Loafing's "Visions" Winners - The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts will be showing the CL "Visions" contest winners along with the Warhol Exhibit, opening on Thursday, March 29th, at 6:30-8:30 PM. Admission is $6. I'll give away a spoiler here: The Readers' Choice Award went to Maida Millan.  At the Cube, on the NW corner of W. Kennedy and Ashley at the Museum's new digs.
Florida Museum of Photographic Arts Workshops & Safaris -
Tampa Criterium Bike Race Photo Safari
Saturday, March 31st at 7:00pm  

Brown Bag Workshop - Part I
       Sunday, April 1st at 11:00 a.m. 
Contact FMoPA here: [Link]

Zen Glass Tenth Anniversary Party - Zen Glass will have a celebration of their first decade in business this Saturday, March 23rd with a masquerade art party to be held at 600 27th St South, in St Pete in the Warehouse Arts District (WAD), from 8 to midnight. Music, food & drink, and, of course, glass blowing.

Gregory Dirr in Groups Show @ Opening of Clothesline Galllery's "Welcome" Show in Sarasota. - Dirr, a well-known Florida Artist, and collaborator in many projects, including the installations at Olio is part of this group show. [Link] Saturday March 23rd.

 [Post still in progress]

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Arts Lofts -- In Bloom

Arts Lofts entrance

The Arts Lofts are located literally above the Florida Craftsman Gallery. It is the upper floor of the building, divided into several studios. The artists hold shows in the lobby by the elevators on a monthly basis. They recently had an opening for their Spring "In Bloom" show.

Javier Dones works with (mostly stressed copper and other metals) mixed media works that speak of the tropical climes of the island he comes from and loves. This work had no visible title in that tag at lower right. It's an expressive explosion of life, with veins of highlights emanating from the seed-like center, with a few tendrils leading to flowers.

Lee West, "Inner Glow"

"Inner Glow", a large, (30x40) beautiful acrylic floral with well thought out color contrast by Lee West. Note the lack of directional light. It comes from within the flower itself.

Work by Brian James

This photograph of a model posing while dancing on a couch is by photographer Brian James. It is imbued with the spirit of Spring, what the poet Dylan Thomas called "the green fuse". Note the bouquets of flowers at either end of the couch.

Work by Joe Walles

On the left, a photograph titled "Heart's Desire" by Joe Walles, an ex-journalist who is at home doing street photography or botanical studies like the one at left. Note the complex composition, the way the arches of the leaves on the lower left serve to highlight the flowers and the small light dot above them seem to be sublimating from their surface.

Rebecca Skelton, "Night Garden"

This is a mixed-materials drawing on hand-made paper. Rebecca Skelton's discipline and well-honed talents have resulted in a stand-out body of work to which "Night Garden" belongs. A woman with a look of anticipation, longing and mystery peers into the darkness. Some flowers bloom at night.

Congratulations to all the artists and to Arts Lofts for a good show.

Arts Lofts is at 10 Fifth St North, St Petersburg.
--- Luis

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

C. Emerson Fine Arts & Clayton Chandler

The prominent blog Hyperallergic has mentioned Clayton Chandler & Lori John's C. Emerson Gallery in the article "SCOPE Kills With Kindness" about the last NY SCOPE art fair. They are mentioned under "Extremely Honorable Mention" at the bottom of the post. This recognition is well-deserved by both the artist and CEFA.


Read the blog post here: [Link]

Deuces: Florida is Number Two in the Rankings.

First, the good news. The Dade, Broward & Palm Beach area is number six (6th) in arts and entertainment jobs, according to the US Census. Source: [Link]. This was from 2009 data, indicating nearly 40,000 workers, and they averaged $ 34,500 in salaries. Within the state, Orlando ranked #1, with over 40,000 workers. Tampa came in at almost 20,000. Jacksonville came in at less than half that.
NYC was #1 with 153,000 working in arts and entertainment, and Chicago at 65,000.

ArtBistro [Link] has published ranking of the states by arts funding cuts per capita between 2009 & 2010. 37 states experienced funding cuts, the highest, at the bottom, is Michigan, at a staggering -81%. Florida came in second, in terms of arts funding cuts, at -65%.

We also came in second in terms of funding per capita. Michigan still spends .22 (cents) per cap/yr on the arts, but Florida spends .15 (fifteen cents) on each of its citizens per year. That is a total of $2.5 million, compared, to the amount the legislature found for the controversial pet project of J.D. Alexander, Florida Polytechnic, which will cost $46.3 million by opening day.

Think about it: States like Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and all the other Southern states are way ahead of us. Compared to other states, the arts are an afterthought to our legislature.

The children of Florida and all its citizens deserve better in terms of cultural opportunities and education outcomes. When corporations consider moving to Florida, they often cite a dearth of arts education as a negative. We can do better than this.

Sharan Elran Project: Unlimited Edition.

Work by Sharan Elran

Sharan Elran was reviewed here back when NCECA graced Tampa with several shows based around its yearly convention. Sharan had an interactive ceramic piece titled "400 Bricks", which viewers nee' participants configured any way they wanted to and the piece morphed into something else every few hours.

Overhead view

He wrote me about his new project, a series of works that are based on 14 components that can be assembled in over six billion permutations, enough for one for every person alive on the planet. The finished product is a porcelain vase, as pictured above and on the left. This is is his graduation project, which will be exhibited at The Cranbrook Museum of Art, in Bloomfield Hills Michigan, opening on April 21st.

Each vase is different and numbered.

He's crowdsourcing this via Kickstarter read more about it here:  [Link]

* Both pictures courtesy of Sharan Elran.