Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Street Art: Sanctuary: St. Pete Rooftop

Work by Sebastian Coolidge
There are secret spaces whose walls are covered with graffiti. One of them is on Central, and invisible from the street. Access to this space is via invitation only. The work of top-level artists can be seen here. People like Stoic and Christian Thomas, whose work seems to be everywhere I look. Here are some photographs of that space:

The mural on left is nearby.

Work by Stoic

Work by Christian Thomas
Tools of the trade.

--- Luis


August is the month-long series of events that is David Audet's feast of art and culture known as the Cuban Sandwich Show. In Tampa, the Cuban Sandwich is not a mere morsel for satiating hunger pangs. It is a cultural icon, encoded with history and sociology and one that is elevated to an art form. This series of events celebrates our indigenous origins and foundation myths. At a time when we're going to be visited by the RNC and thousands of media people, this show will say to the world:

This is where we come from, this is who we are.

[To Art Taco readers in St. Pete and other nearby areas: Gas up and cross the pond. This is one of the best festivals in the area. I can recommend it without reservation. I have put asterisks on those events I think are absolute "musts", but they are all extraordinary and well worth your time and attention.]

  Here's the Master Schedule of Events: 

August 1 (Wed.)
Opening Night Celebration
7 p.m. Free
Grownman Brand Studios
6412 Central Ave. Seminole Heights Phone 813-238-6242

August 2(Thurs.)
Tampa Films and Filmmakers: Curated by Paul Guzzo
7 p.m. $3.
The Buzz Coffee Bar
710 Harbour Post Drive, Harbour Island

August 3-30 (Starts Fri) *
The Cuban Sandwich Show
Artists reception 5:30-9 p.m. August 3, Free
Gallery hours: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays; Tuesdays noon-7 p.m.
A group of Tampa artists create a labyrinth of spaces, objects and
audio illuminating the mysterious city sheltering them.
Hillsborough Community College-Ybor Campus.
HCC Performing Arts Building,
2204 N. 15th Street Tampa, FL 33605.

August 4 (Sat.)
Absolut Art and Animals
1-4 p.m., $10. donation
Gaspar’s Grotto, Ybor City
1805 East 7th Ave., Tampa, Fl., 33605
A benefit for Animal-Based Charities; with a silent auction, artist Joanna Karpay painting animal portraits, and the revealing of a new mural depicting local pets.
 ________________________________End First Week_______________________

2nd Week: August 5 (Sunday)
Chusmeria de Ybor: Fables and Tales of Our Town
2-5 p.m. Free
King Corona Cigar Lounge, Ybor City
1523 East 7th Ave., Tampa, Fl. 33605
Open to all of Tampa;s storytellers, embellishers and taletellers.
Hear the “real” history of Tampa and Ybor. And believe it or not …

August 8 (Wed)
Strange Fruit: Readings by Tampa Writers and Poets
7 p.m. $3
Grownman brand Studios, Seminole Heights
6412 Central Ave., 33609 Phone 813-238-6242
Melissa Fair, Rhonda Nelson, Lisa Birnbaum, Don Morrill, Gianna Russo,
Cole Bellamy, Silvia Curbelo James E. Tokely, Sr.

August 11 (Sat)
Food for Thought: Forum on the History of Food in Tampa
10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free
Hillsborough Community College -Ybor City, Performing Arts Building,
Corner of 14 Street and Palm Avenue. Phone 813-253-7674
10 a.m: History of Food in Tampa Panel Discussion
1:30 p.m: Living in America: 100 Years of Ybor. Film Director Gayla Jamison
will screen and host a panel discussion of her documentary.
3:30 p.m: I Am a Cuban Sandwich, a one-man performance by Richard DiPietra.
Panelists include moderator Tom Shereberger, from the Poytner Institute and former food editor for the St. Petersburg Times; Dr. Susan Greenbaum, Professor Emerita of Anthropology at University of South Florida; historian and USF scholar Gary Mormino, Chris Sherman, former restaurant critic for the St. Petersburg Times; Michelle and Robert Faedo, food truck owners, among others.
________________________________ End 2nd Week____________________________

3rd Week: August 12-31(Starts Sunday) *
Epic of the Sandwiche Cubano and other Poems of Tampa
Artist’s Reception, Aug. 12 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Free. Regular hours, $10.
Florida Museum of Photographic Arts
400 N. Ashley Dr., 33602 Phone 813-221-2222
Photo installation based on the poetry of Tampa Poet Laureate James E. Tokely, Sr. Photographers include David Audet, Jeff Fey, Michelle Fader, Laslo Horvath, Peter Melarango, Fred Smith, Matt Wiggins.

August 12 (Sunday)
Tampa Musicians Get Down
2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Free
New World Brewery, Ybor City
1313 8th Ave., 33605

August 18 (Saturday) *
Taste of the Cuban Sandwich
11 a.m.-4 p.m. Free
Cuban Club, Ybor City Phone 813-248-2954
Food fest featuring traditional Tampa cuisine, featuring winners of the Cuban Sandwich Festival held in Ybor in May, plus Cuban sandwiches from numerous local restaurants; plus roast pork, deviled crabs, empanadas, flan. Live music by Ray Viladonga and Dreamboat, and a special performance of I Am a Cuban Sandwich, a one-man performance by Richard DiPietra is scheduled.
_____________________________End Third Week_________________________

August 19 (Sunday) *
BBQ Block Party and Chicken Parade and Rooster Promenade
2 p.m.-7 p.m. Free
Big Al’s BBQ, Gaspar’s Grotto, Dirty Shame, Ybor City
Lots of BBQ and drinks, live music, and a costume parade open to everybody: children, dogs, pirates, hipsters, and, of course, fowl of all feathers. Bring costumes, do-da hats, wagon floats and umbrellas as we celebrate the life and alas, demise of James E. Rooster, a famous feathered citizen of Ybor City. Parade begins around 6 p.m. Wear sunscreen and comfy shoes. Beads optional.

August 27-30 (Starts Monday)
Common Sense
Various hours. Free, call for gallery hours.
West Tampa Center for the Arts,
906 N. Armenia Ave. www.wtca-arts.org
National juried art show highlighting socio-political issues and documenting current public sentiment as seen through the eyes of the artists.


Monday, July 30, 2012

Sing Truth to Power: Pussy Riot Going to Court.

10 l1008051 Pussy Riot   in photos
The "crime" being committed. Pussy Riot playing on the altar.

pussy riot Pussy Riot   in photos
Pussy Riot
12805261 Pussy Riot   in photos
Pussy Riot Members

Pussy Riot [Link] is a feminist collective/Punk Band in Russia whose crime was to reveal the moral rot of  Vladimir Putin's regime by staging an impromptu concert without permission in Moscow's Cathedral of Christ. The song asked the Virgin Mother to intercede on behalf of freedom. Their ultrasound exposed the government for what it is (and it should be noted that the church has been cheerleading Putin since it was rebuilt). The Patriarch of the Church called in the authorities, and three of them were arrested. They face seven years in prison.

Pussy Riot sees itself as a group of a generation disgusted by Putin's iron grip on Russia.

They wear Balaclavas to emphasize their collective identities over individual ones. One of their group with the nom de guerre "Sparrow", said in a recent interview: "everybody can be Pussy Riot."

As Maria Alyokhina, 24, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29, go to trial, artists and musicians all over the world are in solidarity with them. It is not they who should be on trial, but the government and church who cows obediently to it. 


Awaiting trial

Street Art: Erasing Graffiti

In its epic efforts to look presentable to the RNC, the city of Tampa has suddenly found money for the arts that hasn't existed for years. Amenities denied to its citizens are being rolled out like a red carpet for strangers who will be here for only a week. New trees on Bayshore (but only close to the Ice Palace) propped up and struggling with salt water intrusion from Debbie become metaphors. In the rush to put on the dog, $25 million have been sunk into the Ice Palace, strip joints are adding private lap dance rooms (for Christian Conservatives?), setting up chat rooms at $4/min. so the conventioneers can "develop relationships" with the girls before arriving, and one particularly creative joint is bringing in a Sarah Palin look-alike. Restaurants along Howard are sharpening their knives for what they hope will be a busy week. My dog's igloo is for rent to the RNC for $599.99 a night.

 In the midst of all this hospitality, Street Art is being zealously eradicated.  

What remains are hideous brown and black blots that look like diseased, necrotic bruises. Here's a few...

--- Luis

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Organic Inhabitants: The Creature Comforts of David Hicks and Patricia Sannit @ Mindy Solomon Gallery

Patricia Sannit, "Tower"

 Organic forms in ceramics are to be expected. Clay comes from the earth, was used to hold food and water stores for a very long time, and is directly formed by human hands. Organic forms often slip into a lot of work with more geometrics. Thirteen thousand years old., the medium spans half the history of modern man in its utilitarian and art guises.

 In Patricia Sannit's "Tower", over a dozen disks are stacked vertically. Many have markings along the edges, annotations on the horizontal plane that are shifted into another dimension by their verticality. Shorter cycles and longer ones.

David Hicks, "Flora, Dark Bloom"

 Mindy Solomon has consistently brought first-rate emerging and established ceramics artists from around the world to the Bay area and art fairs. In Organic Inhabitants, the work of David Hicks and Patricia Sannit are brought together.

On the left is "Flora, Dark Bloom" by David Hicks. The forms are engorged with fertility and life. They reach out to the light, engaged in a phototropic slow-motion choreography, a sensous sun dance concentrating light, water, minerals into a brief, shining moment of life.

Both artists have a close-to-the-earth awareness. For Hicks it draws from agricultural proceses and cycles of germination, growth, maturation, fruitfulness, decay, and a return to the earth, primal stages for everything that lives. Patricia Sannit is connected via literally digging into the earth in archaeological sites. She told me at the opening of the show about a specific moment during a dig when she unearthed an artifact, and a moment of illumination followed, things coming together in her heart and mind, revealing a connection that would unfold into her future.

David Hicks and one of his "Still Life" works.
The agricultural cycles have deep connections to human culture and is analogous to human life cycles. One thing that is evidenced in the work is the fecundity of plants. In the hanging "Still Life" series, gourd-like swollen forms (which also edge out into other forms, all organic) hang heavy on steel cables from the wall, like harvested crops.  The other forms, floral, fruit-cluster-like forms project strong reproductive power underscored by mortality.

Patricia Sannit, "Helios I" 
Patricia Sannit's work is about continuity, human evolution and exploration of forms across time. Tens of thousands of years of human lives engaged in the mysteries and revelations of forms and time. Our perceptions and attempts to grasp time, to use geometry to see the invisible, store and transmit feelings in an archaeological context, are expressed in these fictional artifacts made during the artist's life & about the layering of hundred of human generations. Sustained exploration over many human cycles. Her glazes give the impression of ancient markings and unearthed forms. In "Helios I", on left, note how the circular form is broken up into calendrical markings in four (seasonal?) sections.

Patricia Sannit, "Tidal Pool low POV
top view
Sannit also incorporates megalithic tropes downsized into her work. Most will view "Tidal Pool" from above, where it has a bowl/pool like form into it, also marked with various triangles, etc. harkening back to humanity's early days as beach bums. On the left is a side view from tabletop level. What looks like "legs" for the form bear a similarity to a type of megalithic structure called a dolmen, where a large cap stone is held up by a trio of vertical ones.

Ancient Dolmen

I spoke with David Hicks about his work. One of the things we talked about were his glazes. Although he is fluent with glazes, he told me he is not a glaze chemist, but deliberately experiments, reaching, trying new things.

The curator juxtaposes these two artists wisely in terms of the medium, but more so conceptually. Both address somewhat similar concerns, through cycles and different kinds of continuity, the biological and cultural. Something any living/mortal creature can take comfort in.

Congratulations to artists Hicks and Sannit, to Mindy Solomon for hosting and curation, and to her crew for a good show.

--- Luis

Mindy Solomon Gallery is located at   The show runs through Sept 8th. Admission is free.

Mindy Solomon Gallery
124 2nd Ave. NE
St. Petersburg, FL 33701

ph 727.502.0852
Gallery Hours
Wed-Sat: 11am - 5pm
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: By Appointment

Friday, July 27, 2012

Norman Towle Art Show and Pangea Project #29 @ Venture Compound, Sat. July 28th.

I just received this: Saturday, July 28th (tomorrow)...

Norman Towle Retrospective gallery opening at the Venture Compound.

Norman Towle was a local artist who passed away a few years ago. A friend of the Compound came upon a shed full of his work and we decided to show it. 100% of the sales money will go to his elderly widow to help her with medication costs.

Norman's work ranged from landscapes to portraits of famous people such as Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Duff..

The PANGAEA PROJECT No.29: Balázs Pándi [Rome, Italy] and Rat Bastard [Miami] 

In conjunction with this opening, Venture Compound is having one of its excellent  music concerts. Some of the greatest names in Noise Music will be playing. The gathering of talent and energies at these concerts is outstanding. Admission $5. 2621 Fairfield Ave. S., Saint Petersburg. I can recommend these concerts without reservation.

[Insider Tips: You may want to bring some foam earplugs. It can get loud. Pay close attention to where you park, make sure it's a legit spot. Dress lightly, it can get hot temp-wise with the dancing.]

Artists from the Oriente @ Nuance Galleries

Map of the Oriente province of Cuba
Cuba is short and wide. The Easternmost province, Oriente, has played a major part in Cuban (and US) history in spite or because of its distance from the dominant culture of La Habana. This geographical distance has encouraged the area to develop its own character and culture. Oriente used to be a province on its own, until 1976 when it was broken up into five smaller ones. Jose Marti died there. Fidel and Raul Castro were born there. The US base called Gitmo and/or Guantanamo and its notorious prison are there. Oriente was and is primarily an agricultural area producing sugar and coffee. Today it is becoming more popular with tourists, but being 650 miles from Havana it remains somewhat isolated.

Reynaldo Pagan Avila, "Somos Inocentes"

The works in this show come from the Eastern Cuba Cultural Exchange, a non-profit founded by Clyde Hensley, a Jensen Beach resident whose life has included working on a tanker ship in Japan, treasure diving with Mel Fisher and Charter Boat fleet owner in the Virgin Islands. In 1995, he visited the Oriente area as part of a cultural exchange and aid mission. He met artists in the region,visited the Jose Joaquin Tejada Escuela de Artes Plasticas located in Santiago, and was impressed with the quality of the work, and that the artists were so driven that they were working on cardboard and sugar cane sacks instead of canvas. Other visits followed, supplies were secured, ties strengthened and the Easter Cuba Cultural Exchange began bringing in work and some artists into the US.

In the work above left, Reynaldo Pagan Avila depicts children behind bars or (bird?) caged. The top figure has a mischievious smile, and toys. The lower figure wears a child's newspaper hat, seems to be sitting on the toilet, has a drawing on the floor and laundry hanging. The artist grew up in one of the nicer neighborhoods in the area, but later moved to an economically poor one, whose people, situation and culture he embraced. He mentions David as an influence. In the work one can see postmodern irony, and strong traces of surrealism.

"Artists from the Oriente" is a touring exhibition on a four-year, eighteen city journey. I saw it at the new Nuance Gallery in St. Pete at 2924 Central Ave in St. Pete. It is important to note that although the artists live far from the cultural hub of Havana, they are far from being culturally isolated. Informed through their educational institutions, many of these artists are not naifs or self educated. One is a museum director, others are professors and/or graduates from educational institutions.

Alfredo Rodriguez, "En el Reino de Dios, Todo es Posible"

Alfredo Cecilio Rodriguez Cedeno is a mostly self-taught artist who spent his childhood on a farm, close to the landscapes he now paints. It's hard to recognize it in this context, but he was influenced by Dutch landscape artists, in his colors by the Barbizon School, and by a few Cuban artists. The painting on left, whose title translates to "In The Kingdom of God All is Possible", we see a self-portrait of the artist at a large table on which a miniature landscape sits. A stream forms a waterfall at the edge of the table, and there's a tub to catch the flow. The flooring is dirt, and also a landscape, with visible tire tracks.A large book lies towards the lower right. The artist explains that he used to sit with art books and his paints and canvases and work in a solitary fashion. The figure's right arm rests on another table where brushes dry in a jar, other books reside, and a painting of Jesus hangs on the wall. Rodriguez spends time sketching plein air, and he seeks out specific old trees to incorporate into his paintings. This work is a parable on the natural paradise of his youth, a commentary on religion, Nature as the sacred, and man's inextricable connections to both.

This exhibit is packed with works of this caliber, rich with Cuban humor, social, religious, political, cultural and ecological narratives, laced with irony, love of the land, mysticism expressionism and much more. The works are not about a particular theme, school or genre, but unified by culture and geography.

Congratulations to the artists, Nuance Galleries, the Hensleys and their Cultural Exchange for a good show.

--- Luis

At Union Marti-Maceo in Ybor City  1226 E.Seventh Ave. (Tampa). on July 28th, 7-11 PM for a fundraiser ($25 admission).Afterwards, it travels to Nuance in Tampa, 804 S. Dale Mabry Hwy. Tampa, on August 2nd, from 6-9 PM.  Free admission.

Nuance Galleries, 804 S Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa, (813) 875-0511.  Gallery Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

This Beast of The Southern Wilds Weekend, July 27th-29th

 So you Think You Can Paint? @ Tempus Projects -  Tracy Midulla Reller reopens Tempus Projects Gallery after aestivating for a few months (just in time for the hottest temps of the year) with the third So You Think You Can Paint? show. Vince Kral hosts this competition and party. The winners will be selected by a panel of judges. Prizes are provided by AOE Art Supply [Link]. All on Friday, July 27th, from 6-10 PM. 5132 N. Florida Ave. Tampa. Free admission.

Artists of The Oriente: East Cuba Cultural Exchange Benefit and Exhibition @ Nuance Gallery and Marti Maceo Society - I've seen this exhibit at the St. Pete Nuance gallery and will be putting up the review here shortly. The benefit is a findraiser for the Marti Maceo Society, which is in financial jeopardy. The benefit is on Saturday, July 28th, at 7 PM. Hors d'oeuvres by Carmine's, Cigars by Tabanero, music by the Freddy Montes Trio.Admission $25.00. All at 1226 E.Seventh Ave., Ybor City (Tampa).


Contested Space Between the Natural and the Built Environment @ USF Contemporary Art Museum - Four Miami artists in residence at CAM about the dynamics at the edge of the Everglades. Through August 4th at 4202 Fowler Ave, CAM101. Hrs: 10 AM - 5PM weekdays. 1-4 PM Saturdays. Free admission.

Still ongoing...

Hot Summer Show II @ Clayton Galleries - Group show of artists represented by the gallery. Tuesday - Friday 10 AM - 5 PM. Saturday, July 21st, 11 AM - 4 PM. Free admission. 4105 S. McDill Ave, Tampa.

Crochet Coral Reef @ Florida Craftsmen Gallery - This is a stunning collaboration between 280 artists, one that always draws viewers to the windows even when closed. This is also something children love. One of the most unique and beautiful installations in the area in a long time. To Tampans, this is more than enough reason to brave crossing the bay (yes, you can!). 501 Central Ave. Free. See my review of it here: [Link] .

Stripped Bare and Bathed @ Dali Museum - A rare chance to see how art is preserved at this museum. Through Sept 9th. Dali prints are also being shown. All at Bayshore Drive SE and Fifth Ave. Admission is $21 for adults. $10 admission after 5 PM on Thursdays.

Florida Museum of Photographic Arts - The Brassai show, which I reviewed here: [Link], and the Member's Show, which I need to see ASAP. 400 N. Ashley St,, Tampa. Admission $10.00. Tues. - Sat. 10 AM - 5 PM. 10 AM - 8 PM Friday, and Noon to 5 PM Sunday.

Glassy - Eyed: Global + Local @ Museum of Fine Arts St Pete - An excellent overview of fine arts glass from many artists around the world, and locally as well. They also have a show of Soviet Era photographs (if you go, look up Farm Security Administration photos before heading out, there's interesting similarities and differences).  MFA St. Pete, 255 Bech Drive, St. Pete. Admission $ 17.00. Bring plenty of quarters for the 2 hr parking, and keep an eye on the time. I've paid dearly for failing to do so.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

FMoPA's 12th Annual Members' Show, Part II

Here are a few other photographs that stood out for me in the members' show...

Patricia Warren, "The Art Patron"

Patricia Warren's "The Art Buyer" was taken more or less where it was exhibited. A study in strong form and subtle lighting, with the added attraction of a heavily asymmetrical composition.

Joe Walles, "Plant Hall Porch"

Joe Walles, consummate news and street photographer had this entry in the architecture section. Lyrical lighting and infused with local history.

In the Travel section, Mary Li Creasy's "Boot Camp, Frontier Days, Cheyenne, Wyoming", a still life that encapsulates the event and a sense of place.

Congratulations to all the member artists, judges and FMoPA staffers for putting together a good show.

When I was there, I happened upon the Summer Photo Camp. Several children were enjoying themselves and each other while putting together narrative-laden mixed media works centered around photographs which they had learned to tweak. The work wasn't tagged, or I would attribute it to the artists.

FMoPA's Summer Photo Camp is fun and the results even more so. The picture on the right is a close-up of the mouth of the ghoul on the left.

--- Luis

FMoPA's 12th Annual Members' Show, Part I

The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts has its 12th Annual Members' Show up. The 132 entries were judged by a jury composed of Pierre Dutertre, educator and photographer, Todd D. Smith, Tampa Museum of Art Director, and Megan Voeller, Creative Loafing's art critic.

Here are the winners in each category:

Woman with Fish
Add caption

"Woman Carrying Fish" by Jeremy Scott won Best in Show. A woman carrying a stringer of fish poses on a sandy road. She is dressed in a dress that evokes Depression-era fashion and the style is more than a little reminiscent of Walker Evans' work during that time.

Jessica Cruz - Members Choice

The Members' Choice award went to "Undecided" by Jessica Cruz. A figure casts a long shadow in a dramatic pose.

Bob Dein Mr. Quantum Singularity

Best in Digital, "Mr.Quantum Singularity", by Bob Dein. A tight head shot of a man with a direct, hot-wired look into the camera. Beautifully post-processed. That's a nice halo around the outline of the head on the left hand side. It makes Mr. Quantum look saintly.

Brian Adams Big Red Truck

Best in Travel went to this subtly-colored, three-level landscape titled "Big Red Truck", by Brian Adams

Golden Gate-Stephen ODonohue

Best in Architecture went to this study of the Golden Gate Bridge by Stephen O'Donohue titled "Golden Gate". A very geometric composition utilizing color to good advantage.

Wes Pratt They all look alike

Kevin Stevenson Crosstown TrafficIn Conceptual, "They All Look Alike", by Wes Pratt (on left) took Best. Robots at a line-up combined with the title allude to racial stereotyping.
 "Crosstown Traffic", by Kevin Stevenson (on right) was awarded Best In Creative Medium.

Scott Bolendz Remnant Hammock at TwilightTerri Gross Back to the FutureBest in Portraiture (L.) was this unusual portrait by Teri Gross. It reminded me of early Ken Josephson work. On the right  is Best in Nature / Landscape, by Scott Bolendz, titled "Remnant Hammock at Twilight", a classic, beautiful composition.

Bill Carson Mans Best FriendBest in Documentary was Dr. William Carson's "Man's Best Friend". The man and his dog make this picture.

End, Part I. To be continued....

Pixels @ HCC Ybor

Photoshop changed the way pictures are processed -- and perceived. Its users fractured the illusion of veracity in the photographic image. Today, believing is seeing, but the opposite is no longer true. For those schooled in photo-history,  it wasn't true a few decades after the invention of photography. By the latter half of the 1800's, adept Pictorialist darkroom technicians were doing things like burning in skies from other negatives, moving trees and hills around, inserting people, etc. The best-known example of this would be Oskar Gustav Rejlander's "The Two Ways of Life", a photographic moral cautionary tale, shown above left. A large amount of the tropes now common to Photoshop were already employed via analog means at the time by artists.

The "Pixels" show at HCC Ybor is comprised of works by students and faculty from the Photoshop (PS) classes there. Some of the work belies the process, others are open, if not blatant about it, encouraging the visual dialogue between the finished product, its making, and the viewer. The process as a form of narrative.

The themes in this show are mostly in the mainstream of photography, although the imagery does not fall under the "straight" category.

Selena Hall, "Daydreaming"

Selena Hall's "Daydreaming" shows a boat on sand dunes, with a bird perched at one end. Above, a subframe with an image of the water. A simple, surreal juxtaposition.

Resa Horta, "Unwillful Expectations"

Some look a lot more credible. Resa Horta's "Unwillful Expectations" consists of the back of a womanwho appears to be topless, if not naked, with a blue tape measure wrapped around her waist and being held under tension into an upraised fist, all before a fridge. The struggle between eating and being attractive.

Amber Mace, "Woman in the Living Room"

Montages probably are the most common use for PS. On the left we see what seems to be part PS and part old-school paper collaging. It's hard to tell which is which, but the artist makes the point of juxtaposing old and new. The bookshelves, view outside the window and hanging pictures seem to be digitally inserted.

Francy Arguello, "Swimming in the Darkness"

Francy Arguello's "Swimming in the Darkness"  Is a fantasy piece of a self-portrait of the artist as a mermaid swimming in the clouds, subject to the tidal pull of the Moon. Lightning strikes in the distance. The mermaid's tail breaks through the clouds, flipping. The woman wears a bather's cap and swimming goggles, looking over her shoulder as if questioning the viewer. It makes no effort to hide its construction, calmly confident in its constructed reality.

Congratulations to all the artists, instructors, Carolyn Kossar and HCC Ybor for an interesting show. While it's tempting to go from work to work trying to guess what was PS'ed, my advice is to go and take in the works whole, just as they are.

Closes July 26th.

---- Luis