CITY ISSUES CALL TO ARTISTS

CITY ISSUES CALL TO ARTISTS
FOR PUBLIC ART AT FUTURE ROUNDABOUT

Sarasota, FL:  A Call to Artists is underway for the creation of an original landmark sculpture to be placed at a future roundabout at Orange Avenue and Ringling Boulevard and will become part of the City’s permanent public art collection.

Specific details about the project, including budget, the application process, and selection process are posted atwww.CallForEntry.org

Artists with a proven track record of creating significant outdoor public art commissions, which can withstand the Florida elements, are encouraged to apply.  The deadline for submissions is June 5, 2016.

While there is no central theme or stylistic preference for the sculpture, design criteria will help guide the selection of the piece by the Public Art Committee with final approval by the City Commission.  Included in the overall design criteria:

  • The piece should be high quality and free standing
  • Complement the Orange Avenue/Ringling Boulevard roundabout location
  • Require minimal maintenance (no water features)
  • Must be an original design
  • Can be appreciated from a distance (does not draw people toward it)
  • Must not exceed 20 feet in height
  • Must not display messages or contain signs, flashing lights etc.

The project budget cannot exceed $150,000.

Artists are required to submit qualifications, digital images and a brief description outlining their initial concept for the project.

Images of completed works within the City’s public art collection can be reviewed at:  www.SarasotaGov.com

Three finalists will be invited to present their proposals to the Public Art Committee.  The Public Art Committee will make a recommendation to the City Commission, which will have final approval.

The current timeline for the roundabout sculpture, which is subject to change, is as follows:

  • Submission Deadline:  June 5, 2016
  • Submissions Review by Public Art Committee:  July 2016
  • Finalists’ Presentations to Public Art Committee:  September 2016
  • Recommendation Presented to City Commission:  November 2016
  • Artist Under Contract:  December 2016
  • Installation:  November 2017

Staff members with the Neighborhood and Development Services Department, which oversees the public art program, are coordinating this public art project far in advance of the construction of the Orange Avenue/Ringling Boulevard roundabout, to ensure the sculpture is ready for installation when the roundabout opens. Construction on the roundabout is expected to begin in Summer 2017.

For more information visit the Call for Entry website:  www.CallForEntry.org or contact David Smith, Neighborhood & Development Services General Manager:   941-365-2200 ext. 4175.

Sarasota’s Artist Collective, SARTQ Returns!

After a brief two year hiatus, the now redesigned, 501(c)(3) aims to not only maintain a sustainable network of accomplished Sarasota/Manatee artists, manage an ambitious calendar of annual exhibitions and events, but also to create collaborations with local businesses, community, and performing arts organizations with a special effort to forge strong relationships with local schools. SARTQ events and exhibitions are suitable for all ages and accessible to everyone in the community.

6 SARTQ Exhibitions b

SARTQ intends to develop ongoing programs that support Sarasota’s multiple academic institutions and inspire art students to pursue art as a career. SARTQ provides an opportunity for member artists to connect with other local artists and share the job of promoting and marketing their work. SARTQ is constantly accepting submissions for new membership. If you are a visual artist residing within Sarasota/Manatee Counties and currently creating artwork, you are eligible to submit.

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To begin, SARTQ is announcing it’s popular 6th Annual “Print Party,” an event that gives the public a chance to interact with artists and artistic process. From 5 to 11 p.m. on March 21st SARTQ will hold its screen-printing party downtown Sarasota in an effort to raise funds, recruitment, and awareness of SARTQ.

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Once again, each of the 10 founding SARTQ artists has created an original design for the event. Attendees may bring their own clothing items, however anything that can lie flat under the screen and will accept ink can be printed on. Choose your favorite design — or pick several! — each print is just $5. The public is encouraged to be creative, with some particularly cute dog clothes, baby tees and handbags resulting from previous events. There will also be blank t-shirts on hand for purchase. This is a free, family friendly event. Entertainment will be provided, food and drink will be available.

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Incredible Journey: Interview with Emma Thurgood

I’ve been engaged in this ongoing dialogue about support for local contemporary art for quite some time now. Ever since I moved to Sarasota, FL I have experienced a vast amount of creative energy that feels underground, for the most part. Contemporary art collectives and gallery spaces crop up every now and then, which is great because creatives can see Sarasota’s vast potential — the only problem is that they don’t seem to stick for very long. So I wonder; how do we get to a point where new collectives and galleries can become established, and when these new collectives and galleries do become established they, in turn, become a catalyst for new spaces and groups until a domino effect is created? We have a good number of resources, but I think we still need to consider more support from current established institutions, so that artists (young and old) have more of an incentive to stay and help strengthen our art community. For example, when I was recently living in Utah, I loved going to the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art and CUAC because, not only could I view the work of artists living in Los Angeles, Chicago, New York City, Berlin, etc., but I could also view contemporary art that was created by Utah artists! UMOCA even has a “locals only gallery” with a stipend included to help fund each exhibition within that space — AND the work that I saw continually blew my mind because I was viewing powerful, compelling artwork that was created outside of a major art center perspective — it was all new and fresh. I was viewing contemporary art about subjects that were specifically related to the location I was in and that added a whole other dimension to my experience as a viewer. It was also quite clear that these artists were very aware of the contemporary art world, were referencing aspects of it, but not necessarily mimicking it per se — they were adding their own perspective to what I consider an ongoing creative discussion, and it was coming from a Utah perspective. So that makes me think; how amazing would it be to go anywhere in the world and be able to view contemporary art that is representative of that location and its artists’ perspectives, while also being able to view artwork created by emerging and established, national and international, artists in the same space? To me, that would be highly fascinating! Fortunately for Sarasota, I’ve found that Art Center Sarasota is doing just that, and making quite an exciting impression in the process. I recently contacted Art Center Sarasota’s Exhibitions Coordinator, Emma Thurgood, to discuss the Art Center’s 2013-2014 season of exhibitions.

KLL: What is, and has been, your vision for Art Center Sarasota since you started your current position?

ET: My vision for the Art Center’s Exhibitions Program is to grow it to be a leader in Sarasota’s contemporary arts scene. For me, that means showing a variety of art year round that is visually interesting, thought provoking, and creates a memorable experience that they can’t get anywhere else in the area. I’ve been at the Art Center for a year and a half now, and I feel like we are on a great path with those ideas. For the last few exhibitions, visitors have been telling me, “This is the best show I’ve ever been to in Sarasota.” They said that about “Florida Flavor”, they said that about “African Nouveau” and “Leaf | Textile | Purpose” and I think the trend will continue on through the Incredible Journey Season.

KLL: Art Center Sarasota’s 2013-2014 season of exhibitions is titled Incredible Journey; why was that title selected and what should viewers expect to experience during the Incredible Journey season?

ET: Last season was called Southern Exposure for a reason: 20 of the 22 exhibitions we produced were exclusively Florida artists. It was a huge success in highlighting the amazing talents of Florida artists. Now, with Incredible Journey, we’re taking viewers on explorations of different art forms and concepts in art, as well as drawing artists from further afield than we normally do. In the past, it was very rare that our curated shows included artists that were outside of the Florida region. This season, we are presenting artists from across America and we have started the eight-year international exhibition program, “Confluence.” This program is an initiative I started where we will be showcasing artists from the countries in which Sarasota has a sister city. This year it’s Israel, 2015 is Russia.

I think this season is going to take some viewers’ way outside of their comfort zone. There are a lot of shows on the docket that present works that many people aren’t accustomed to seeing in Sarasota. For me, this is all part of creating a dialogue about what art is and can mean that will break down some barriers that have been put up.

KLL: We’ve talked a lot about fostering more support for local artists and creating an incentive for recent graduates to continue to live and work as artists in Sarasota; how is Art Center Sarasota contributing to this goal?

ET: Our main contribution towards encouraging students to stay in Sarasota is through Black Box Projects. It is specifically for students and recent graduates to produce an ambitious project. The Art Center provides an exhibition space and time, as well as some financial resources to see the vision of a student come to life. This contributes to their understanding of real world skills because they have to write a professional proposal to be considered and they have to produce the show.  Because we schedule so far out in advance, a candidate could be a student when they apply for the Project, but already graduated when the Project finally comes on display in the gallery. Secondly, we have juried shows year round, and students and young artists who have been submitting have been winning awards and selling their work regularly over the past six months. Sarasota in general is a great place for that kind of success, too. In my research of other centers like Art Center Sarasota across the country, very few regions are like ours in that they offer so many exhibition opportunities year round across multiple venues. The rate for being selected to hang in a juried exhibit is very high, as well. In other shows across the country, you are competing with hundreds, sometimes thousands of people and only a small handful will be selected. In the Art Center’s juried shows, we receive around 300 submissions from about 200 artists and hang approximately 140-160 pieces. In the current juried show, “miniatures,” we have 244 pieces on display from a submission pool of 345. Those are some great odds for artists.

KLL: In your opinion, why should there be support for local contemporary art in Sarasota?

ET: A city is only as old as its youngest member. If the art scene continues to alienate the younger artists and audiences as it has in years past, they’ll find somewhere else to go where they feel like they belong. It’s a difficult challenge to deal with, especially as a non-profit, because the young people are not always the financial supporters of an organization. But organizations need to cultivate the next round of supporters because, as with all things, times and people change.

Art Center Sarasota does a pretty good job walking this tightrope, I think. I try to make sure that there is something on display for everyone. I have at any given time over 300 artworks on display in the building and they’re all different.  No person should be leaving the center saying that there was not a single piece they liked. It’s impossible.

KLL: What advice would you give to recent graduates about establishing an art practice/career in Sarasota and/or its neighboring communities?

ET: Get involved! It’s hard for students, between classes and jobs, but seriously, there’s still enough down time in their life for them to carve out even twenty minutes a week to go and look at what’s on display in a gallery. The more involved they can become in the arts scene, the better off they’ll be. They’ll have a better idea of who the players are, they’ll be able to meet and speak with many of them at receptions, and it will give them a better idea of how they fit into the art landscape. One of the things I can’t stand is when a  young artist comes to me to ask me to put on a show of their work and they have no idea who I am or what I do or even anything about my organization. I teach a professional practices class at the center with Elizabeth Hillmann, our Education Coordinator, and one of the things we talk about is gallery etiquette. I live by a simple rule when it comes to that: date your gallery. Be informed about who they are and what they do before you approach them, be respectful of their time, and if they pick you for representation, treat them with the absolute utmost respect and maintain a good relationship.

KLL: What other services does the center provide that the community can get involved with?

ET: Art Center Sarasota has a wide variety of events and public programs throughout the year. I have a great lecture season coming up with Kevin Costello and Baila Miller starting on November 21. We also have a killer education program with tons of classes in painting, sculpture, collage, jewelry and other fun stuff. The full listing of classes and workshops can be found at www.artsarasota.org/education. I’m really looking forward to Paper Arts Week November 18 – 22. Then, in March we have tons of programming to accompany our “Confluence: Israel” exhibit and of course, iconcept on March 28, 2014 where art walks the runway!

KLL: I am thrilled by the variety of art mediums and artists that are, and will be, exhibiting this season. Can you touch upon the importance of a diverse exhibition space that incorporates the work of local, national, and international artists?

ET: The best thing about the space at the Art Center is that we have four different galleries. So I generally show four different shows at any one time. Our largest gallery is always a juried exhibit of predominantly local artists. Some of them come from further afield in Florida, and every now and then we get someone from out of state. The other three galleries are dedicated to curated shows of local artists, community groups and nationally recognized artists.

I think some artists would prefer if we only showed local artists all the time, but as a community center, we are not just here for the local artists, we’re here for the viewers too. That’s a difficult balance to manage sometimes. Showing the work of local artists is great, and I do it as often as I can, but showing that work doesn’t mean anything if no one is coming to look at it. What makes a viewer come to look at the local art that we are displaying as opposed to any of the other venues in town doing the same thing? That’s what our curated show of more recognized artists are for- they get the people in the door to come and see something they can’t anywhere else in town. I couldn’t tell you how many times someone has come in to see one of our shows in the front gallery and then bought something from a local artist out of the juried show. It’s also a benefit for the artists showing that they can say they’ve exhibited at a place that has also exhibited such notables as John Chamberlain, Syd Solomon and many others.  It offers up some shared prestige.

KLL: Can you tell us a little bit about CUBEMUSIC, Sun Boxes, and Pulp Culture?

ET: CUBEMUSIC and Sun Boxes, from Craig Colorusso, are the big blockbusters for the opening of our season. I feel like they really kick off the journey. Sound art is so underrepresented in Sarasota. The only other exhibit I’m aware of is the one at the Ringling in late 2011. But, for that you had to pay to go see it or wait for free Monday, and generally the people that need free Monday have to work on Mondays. What’s a viewer to do? Art Center Sarasota is always free and open to the public during our business hours, Mon-Sat 10a-4p. CUBEMUSIC will be transforming the space of Gallery 1 for the next eight weeks. Its cast light and shadows coupled with the soothing deep resonance of sound creates a truly altering experience of the space.

For viewers who still aren’t able to come and see the art, the art is coming to you! We are so excited to take Craig’s other installation Sun Boxes on the road around Sarasota. We’re stopping at parks and beaches to bring sound art to the masses. Whereas CUBEMUSIC is somewhat dark and ominous in its sound, Sun Boxes is positively ethereal. You can’t help but feel happy when you see them and hear them. The full schedule of the Sun Boxes tour for November and January can be found at www.artsarasota.org/sunboxes.

Pulp Culture is another show opening November 7 that I curated. I wanted to do a fun show about paper because I have such a love for it. I daresay it’s a dangerous addiction. I tried to not be too serious about it and just show fun creative art that would make people smile while educating them about the way that paper can be used for art other than drawing or painting. So far it seems I’ve accomplished my goal because of the feedback I’ve already gotten while I was installing the show.

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You can view more information about Art Center Sarasota, Sun Boxes, CUBEMUSIC, Pulp Culture, and Emma Thurgood at:

Art Center Sarasota

Backstage Pass: Emma Thurgood curates excitement

Artist Interview: Craig Colorusso

 

Mindy Solomon Gallery to Move to Miami Arts District

After four years in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, Mindy Solomon, founder and director of the Mindy Solomon Gallery, has decided to make a strategic professional move.

After four years in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, Mindy Solomon, founder and director of the Mindy Solomon Gallery, has decided to make a strategic professional move.

The gallery, currently located at 124 2nd Avenue NE and established in 2009, has enjoyed critical and commercial success, with a loyal local collectors base and national and international clientele. Solomon feels it is time to broaden the market by moving to Miami, “a rapidly growing international city and the gateway to South America.” Having participated in over 40 national and international art fairs, Solomon feels there is more significant growth opportunity for the gallery program and the artists in a larger market. Solomon stated: “I am thankful for my years in the Tampa Bay Area and feel that the arts community will continue to flourish and nurture the growing interests of the collecting community.” Solomon’s current exhibition, ‘The Paintings of Erin Parish,’ on view until September 21st, will be the final show at the St. Petersburg location. Solomon’s next exhibition, the work of Generic Art Solutions, will be the debut show in Miami and is planned for October 16th, 2013, with an opening reception on Wednesday, October 16th from 6-9pm. The gallery’s new location will be at 172 NW 24th Street, Miami.

Generic Art Solutions // The Raft, 2010 // 30x40 inches // archival digital print on photographic paper
Generic Art Solutions // The Raft, 2010 // 30×40 inches // archival digital print on photographic paper

Mindy Solomon Gallery (MSG) specializes in contemporary emerging and mid-career artists. Represented works include painting, sculpture, photography, and video in both narrative and non-objective styles. The MSG also exhibits some of the most prestigious contemporary Korean artists on the world market today. With an interest in client education, such as an upcoming collectors tour to South Korea, and regular artists talks and VIP events, the gallery is a full-service showcase of the international art world. Represented artists of note include: Berlin-based painter Christopher Winter; Scottish photographer Muir Vidler; Korean sculptural artist Kang Hyo Lee; Mexican mixed-media artists the de la Torre Brothers; New York-based painter James Kennedy; and an array of other national and international talent.

Named one of the Top 500 Galleries Worldwide in the Modern Painters 2013 Annual Guide, Mindy Solomon Gallery participates in many prestigious art fairs, including the upcoming Art Miami fair during Art Basel’s Art Week in Miami Beach, as well as the Zona Maco Contemporary Art Fair in Mexico City, VOLTA NY, and Shanghai Contemporary. Always interested in the intersection of art and design, Mindy Solomon and her staff work closely with designers, advisors, consultants and curators to inform and integrate fine works of art into every aesthetic environment.

Mindy Solomon Gallery // Art Southampton Booth // 2013
Mindy Solomon Gallery // Art Southampton Booth // 2013

Downtown Parking Garage Artist Selection

Murals planned for the Palm Ave Parking Garage, corner of Palm Ave. and Main St. 6 stories, 743 parking space, 12,000 sq. ft. retail and restaurant space on the ground level.

Tuesday, Sept. 27, 1 p.m
Parking Garage City Hall Meeting

Topic: Murals planned for the Palm Ave Parking Garage, corner of Palm Ave. and Main St. 6 stories, 743 parking space, 12,000 sq. ft. retail and restaurant space on the ground level.

What: A special meeting will be held tomorrow, Tuesday, Sept. 27 at 1 p.m. to discuss the downtown parking garage murals. The city’s zoning code requires that developers for every new downtown project must set aside half of a percent of the construction cost toward artwork, which means $54,000 was set aside from the garage cost for future artwork purposes.

Initial Proposal: Sarasota-based Jonathan Parks Architects, and Chalk Festival organizer Denise Kowal are seeking $25,000 to solicit the work of five artists to paint art themed murals on five of the garage’s six floors.  The total cost of the mural project is $25,000, with $5,000 being allocated to each of five artists.  Project deadline is Nov. 1.

Proposed Artists for the Palm Ave. parking garage murals:

Marco and Monica Bell, Sarasota, FL-http://www.bellaarte.biz/about_us.html

Chor Boggie, San Francisco, CA-http://www.chorboogie.com

Skip Dydra, Sarasota, FL-http://www.emurals.com/galleries.html

Eduardo Kobra, Sao Paulo, Brazil-http://eduardokobra.com/

Erni Vales, Miami, FL-http://evlworld.com/evlgallery/evmurals