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This is what’s happening August 22-31, 2018

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This is what’s happening in the arts, independent film and community theater from August 22 to August 31, 2018:

 

Muffy Clark Gill rozome on silk ‘Hung Out to Dry’ (08-28-18)

Photos from Muffy Clark Gill’s travels around the world have inspired a new series. She titles it The Wash Day Series and it features batiks that depict motifs revolving around freshly-washed garments drying on clotheslines.

“Wherever I have traveled, I have photographed clotheslines,” says Gill. “Washing clothing and hanging them to dry share a universal commonality. Drying materials used to make clothing and bedding has been one of life’s necessities since men started hunting and women started washing fabrics and objects that could be made into clothing or provide a place to lay one’s head while resting.”

Paintings from the series present viewers with innumerable cues to prompt their imaginations. What does the clothing reveal about the people and families who wear them? What are their personal stories, and what events have they witnessed?

One such batik is Wash Day: Habana Viejo, 44-by-33.5-inch rozome on silk.

“This painting is from a photograph from one of my two trips to Havana, Cuba,” Gill shares. “I was drawn to the bright pops of turquoise and green on the building offset by the pops of color from the clothesline that was hung from one of the balconies.”

To make it, Gill used the Japanese process of batik known as rozome to create layers of color with wax acting as a resist. Once she is satisfied with the finished image, she removes the wax and steams the painting to set the Japanese kimono dyes.

This painting and others can be seen on Muffy’s online gallery at muffyclarkgill.com. Feel free to contact her by phone at (239) 253-8827 or email at Muffy@muffyclarkgill.com for further information and purchase options.

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‘Parallel Harmonies’ on view at Rookery Bay through October 31 (08-28-18)

Parallel Harmonies: Art and Nature is on view now through October 31 at Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center. The exhibition features a collection of work by Cesar Aguilera, Paul Arsenault, Juan Diaz, Ehren Fritz Gerhard and Katia Miranda that celebrates the relationship between the artist and the natural world that inspires him or her.

This relationship has evolved over the millennia and is still a central focus of contemporary practice for many artists today. Relationships are symbiotic, one taking care of the other. In a time of global climate change, artists are using the inspiration of nature and its current health to bring light and change to human patterns of behavior. They aim to protect this relationship and care for what inspires them: wind, color, trees, texture, sun and vibrancy.

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Friends of Rookery Bay and United Arts Council seek submissions for joint show (08-28-18)

Friends of Rookery Bay (FORB) and the United Arts Council of Collier County (UAC) are seeking submissions for their annual painting exhibit at the Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center in Naples, Florida. The title of this exhibit is Intersection of Man and Nature: People, Planet, and Prosperity. Paintings should therefor reflect and/or express the essence of Florida’s flora and fauna. The show helps commemorate Rookery Bay’s 40th anniversary and will be exhibited November 6, 2018 through January 9, 2019.

The exhibit is open to artists residing in Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties, both full-time and seasonal. Artists may submit up to two jpeg entries. The deadline for submissions is 4:00 p.m. on Friday, October 5. Send entries via email with jpeg attachments to: KDonovan@UACCollier.org.

The juror for the show is Megan C. McShane, PhD, who serves as Associate Professor of Modern Art History at Florida Gulf Coast University.

Artists can qualify for three awards:

  • $750 for Best in Show,
  • a Juror’s Choice Award of $350 for Excellence; and
  • the United Arts Council Merit Award of $150.

Winners will be chosen on the day of the reception, which will be held from 5:30-7:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 29.

Rookery Bay is part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve and is located at 300 Tower Rd., Naples, FL 34113.

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Baker Museum reopening with aptly named ‘Intermission’ exhibition (08-27-18)

After being closed for nearly a year in the wake of Hurricane Irma, the Baker Museum of Art will reopen in September with three exhibits. The first of these is Intermission, Art and Music from the Permanent Collection.

Since ancient times, music has had symbolic significance in the visual arts. This exhibition of work from the permanent collection explores the representation of music through an in-depth look at a group of paintings, sculptures, prints and objets d’art by 20th-century artists. The selection shows a wide range of approaches to the theme. A painting by Jonathan Greene shows singer Etta James performing and accompanied by backup singers, while a photograph by Margaret Bourke-White captures Pablo Casals conducting at the Bach Music Festival in France in 1950. Works by A.E. Gallatin, Esphyr Slobodkina, Claude Lawrence and Irene Victoria Rousseau explore music conceptually by titling abstract images with musical terms. In addition, pieces by contemporary artists Max Neuhaus, Takashi Murakami, Christian Marclay and Terry Allen are the result of experimental explorations of sound and non-traditional formats. Other important works by José Clemente Orozco, Armando Amaya and Juan Soriano address dance in various media.

Intermission: Art and Music from the Permanent Collection celebrates Artis—Naples’ mission through the visual and performing arts. The exhibition runs September of 2018 to January, 2019. For more information, please call 239-597-1900 or visit http://artisnaples.org/baker-museum.

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Philip Haas ‘Four Seasons’ visits Baker Museum September 2018-June, 2019 (08-25-18)

After being closed for nearly a year in the wake of Hurricane Irma, the Baker Museum of Art will reopen in September with three exhibits. The second of these is Four Seasons, an installation by American artist Philip Haas.

Four Seasons is a monumental, outdoor sculpture set inspired by Giuseppe Arcimboldo’s paintings of the same name. Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall are 14-foot human busts formed by vegetables, fruit, branches, leaves, ivy and moss. Since Four Seasons debuted to great acclaim in 2012, the exhibition has been on a five-year, nine-venue tour of museums and gardens in the U.S. and Europe, including New York Botanical Garden; Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art; the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the Gardens of Versailles; and Piazza del Duomo in Milan.

Haas is an internationally-renowned contemporary American artist and filmmaker, who, by marrying sculpture, painting, film, and architecture, has fashioned a unique visual vocabulary all his own. He describes his process as “sculpting by thinking.”

The installation will be on view September 2018 to June, 2019. For more information, please call 239-597-1900 or visit http://artisnaples.org/baker-museum.

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Baker Museum reopens next month with Schrenk Student Photo Exhibition (08-27-18)

After being closed for nearly a year in the wake of Hurricane Irma, the Baker Museum of Art will reopen in September with three exhibits. The third of these is the Student Photography Exhibition.

Sponsored by the Schrenk Family Foundation, this intensive photography program is aimed at highly-motivated Collier County high school students. Each year, a class of up to 20 students is selected to participate. The program consists of four weekend workshops during the academic year and a two-week seminar in June. The primary instructor for the Photography Institute is J. Tomas Lopez, M.F.A., professor of photography, and director of electronic media at the University of Miami. The exhibition opens in September and will be on view through October, 2018.

For more information, please call 239-597-1900 or visit http://artisnaples.org/baker-museum.

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‘Your Choice 2018’ exhibit on view at NAA (08-26-18)

Your Choice is the Naples Art Association’s annual non-juried exhibition. It provides an unparalleled opportunity for Naples Art Association contributors to present their artwork to a large audience with no jury process requirement. The exhibition is called “Your Choice” because artists and viewers make the choices. Artists decide which artwork they will exhibit while viewers attending the reception decide who will receive the awards (of which there are five with a total cash value of $1,000).

Your Choice 2018 will be on display through September 19, 2018. The exhibition will be on view on the first and second floors in all of the Naples Art Association’s galleries. Located at 585 Park Street, Naples, the Naples Art Association is open from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For more information, please telephone 239-262-6517 or visit NaplesArt.org.

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Aimee Schlehr dishes on ARTScool2U and SOARing through the Arts (08-26-18)

Over the past 11 months, more than 3,300 youngsters and adults participated in 300 affordable art classes and workshops at the Naples Art Association. Another 400 youth and 150 adults participated in free ARTScool2U and SOARing through the Arts outreach programs.

“The creation of art is important at any age,” states NAA Executive Director Aimee Schlehr, reflecting on these accomplishments. “It strengthens problem solving ability, helps you understand yourself and the world, connects you to your community, promotes healthy living, and helps our youth learn better.”

Congratulations to NAA on making affordable and free art programs available to the Naples community.

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Shake off traditional ‘look-but-don’t-touch’ gallery experience with ‘Feel the Art’ (08-26-18)

Exhibiting October 1 through 27 in the Frederick O. Watson Gallery on the ground floor of the Naples Art Association is Feel the Art, an exhibition of artwork by sighted, visually-impaired and blind artists. As the title implies, visitors will be invited to shake off the traditional gallery experience and use their sense of touch to explore the exhibit.

“Art is generally considered to be a visual experience,” notes NAA in the prospectus for the show. “But our appreciation of art does not need to come purely from sight. Touching is a basic instinct and a way to experience objects, gather information and build awareness.”

Artists interested in participating in the show are invited to enter up to four original works of art. There is a $15 entry fee for each artwork entered ($5 per entry for NAA members and free for Lighthouse of Collier program participants).

This is a juried exhibition, with Deborah Patterson Butler serving as juror. Butler is a scholar, artist and native Floridian who has enjoyed an extensive art career in Southwest Florida. She was Professor of Art History and Humanities at Florida SouthWestern State College for 34 years and served on the college’s Rauschenberg Gallery board. She currently serves on the Board of the International Society of Experimental Artists and chairs the Visual Arts Committee at BIG ARTS on Sanibel Island, where she arranges exhibitions for the center’s Phillips and Founders Galleries.

Butler’s additive sculpture, collage and mixed-media works have been exhibited in Sarasota, Fort Myers and Sanibel, as well as in Traverse City, Michigan. She received a Master of Arts degree in Art History and Humanities from Florida State University in Tallahassee, a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from FSU, and an Associates of Arts from Saint Petersburg College. She has been awarded multiple grants by the National Endowment for the Humanities for study and research at the University of California and John Hopkins University, as well as for programs in Naples, Italy.

Receiving is from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on September 20 and 21. For more information, please telephone 239-262-6517 or visit http://www.NaplesArt.org.

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NAA bringing ‘Scene to be Seen” back on November 1 (08-26-18)

Last year, Naples Art Association introduced Scene to be Seen: A Runway Art Show. The popular event returns on Thursday, November 1. Artwear in all media and styles including garments, ensembles, hats and handbags for both men and women will be featured.

“This event combines the sophistication of Naples with the thrill and excitement of top international couture runway shows,” states NAA in its announcement for the show. “High fashion collides with high art for a unique, exciting opportunity to see the creative process and own a unique piece of artwear yourself.”

The evening will have an immersive atmosphere, giving attendees a chance to socialize and experience the thrill of creativity — including a fully staged runway show, sales gallery, and live auction featuring men’s and women’s garments, ensembles, hats, jewelry and handbags created by artists from Los Angeles, New York, the Philippines and Italy as well as right here in Southwest Florida.

The welcome reception with appetizing hors d’oeuvres and cocktails begins at 7:00 and will be followed by the extraordinary fashion show and auction. After the show, stay for a fabulous after-party with music and a full cash bar.

NAA is currently accepting submissions for the show. A panel of Fashion/Art Centric professionals will select entries from digital images or sketches based upon originality, creativity, artistry, and complexity of workmanship.

Artists may submit model names, however, they must go through committee approval. For more information, including an application form, please visit https://www.naplesart.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/S2BS_CallforArtists.pdf.

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NAA accepting entries for National Art Encounter 2018-2019 (08-26-18)

Online entries are being accepted now through October 4 for National Art Encounter 2018-19, a biennial exhibition open to artists residing in the United States. $3,500 in cash awards will be presented during a reception on the evening of Friday, November 30.

The Naples Art Association initiated the Art Encounter exhibition program in 1983. It is a contemporary art exhibition featuring 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional artwork by artists residing in the United States. The exhibition serves as a platform upon which Florida artists share the spotlight with their peers at the national level. For artists from outside of Florida, the exhibition provides an opportunity to demonstrate success, compete for cash prizes and exhibit in Naples, Florida.

Brad Cushman, Jill Deupi and Kirk Ke Wang will serve as jurors and select nine recipients of the $3,500 in cash awards, vis:

  • $1,000 Best of Show
  • $800 First Place
  • $600 Second Place
  • $400 Juror’s Choice Award
  • $200 Award of Merit (2)
  • $100 Honorable Mention (3)

There is a $29 nonrefundable entry fee to submit one to two artworks in the 2D and/or 3D categories. The deadline for entries is October 4.

National Art Encounter 2018-19 will be installed in the Naples Art Association’s ground floor galleries from December 1, 2018 through January 12, 2019. For more information, please telephone 239-262-6517 or visit http://www.NaplesArt.org.

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Meet National Art Encounter 2018-19 juror Brad Cushman (08-26-18)

Online entries are being accepted now through October 4 for National Art Encounter 2018-19, a biennial exhibition open to artists residing in the United States. $3,500 in cash awards will be presented during a reception on the evening of Friday, November 30. Brad Cushman, Jill Deupi and Kirk Ke Wang will serve as jurors and select the cash award recipients.

Brad Cushman has been gallery director and curator at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock since 2000. Cushman has curated numerous exhibitions for his own institution as well as others. In 2013, he curated Face to Face: Artist’s Self Portraits from the Collection of Jackye and Curtis Finch, Jr. for the Arkansas Art Center. The exhibition traveled to Auburn University in Alabama and the Baker Museum of Art at Artis—Naples.

An award-winning artist himself, Cushman taught art for twelve years at Oklahoma State University before moving to Arkansas. In 1989, Cushman received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to study Postmodernism Theory at the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.

Cushman received a Master of Fine Arts degree in Painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Studio Art from Illinois College in Jacksonville. He is the voice of Picture This, featuring audio essays on art and architecture on Little Rock NPR stations and is the host of Inside Art produced by University of Arkansas at Little Rock television.

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Meet National Art Encounter 2018-19 juror Dr. Jill Deupi (08-26-18)

Online entries are being accepted now through October 4 for National Art Encounter 2018-19, a biennial exhibition open to artists residing in the United States. $3,500 in cash awards will be presented during a reception on the evening of Friday, November 30. Jill Deupi, Brad Cushman and Kirk Ke Wang will serve as jurors and select the cash award recipients.

Dr. Jill Deupi is the Beaux Arts Director and Chief Curator of the University of Miami’s Lowe Art Museum. Prior to assuming the position in August 2014, Dr. Deupi was Director and Chief Curator of University Museums at Fairfield University, where she was also an Assistant Professor of Art History.

She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Mount Holyoke College and her Juris Doctor degree from American University’s Washington College of Law, graduating summa cum laude.

Dr. Deupi holds both a Master of Arts degree and Ph.D. in art history from the University of London’s Birkbeck College and the University of Virginia, respectively.

A Rome Prize recipient, Dr. Deupi wrote her doctoral dissertation on art and cultural politics in 18th-century Naples. Her prior museum experience includes work at the Royal Academy of Arts, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Snite Museum of Art, the National Gallery (Washington, D.C.), and the Wallace Collection.

Dr. Deupi is a Fellow of both the American Academy in Rome and the Leading Change Institute. She is also a member of the Association of Art Museum Directors, the American Alliance of Museums, the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries (on whose board she sits), Art Table, the International Women’s Forum and the College Art Association (on whose Museum Committee she serves).

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Meet National Art Encounter 2018-19 juror Professor Kirk De Wang (08-26-18)

Online entries are being accepted now through October 4 for National Art Encounter 2018-19, a biennial exhibition open to artists residing in the United States. $3,500 in cash awards will be presented during a reception on the evening of Friday, November 30. Kirk Ke Wang, Jill Deupi and Brad Cushman will serve as jurors and select the cash award recipients.

Kirk Ke Wang is Professor of Visual Arts at Eckerd College in Saint Petersburg, Florida. He is a painter, sculptor, photographer, mixed-media artist and an educational software developer. He was born in Shanghai, China and received Master of Fine Art degrees from both the Nanjing Normal University in Nanjing, China and the University of South Florida in Tampa.

Mr. Wang travels frequently between China and the United States to promote art, education and culture. He maintains studios in Tampa, New York and Shanghai. In addition to teaching and making art, he led a team of experts and developed a computer learning system for children, which has now been used by over one-thousand schools nationally.

Mr. Wang’s art has been exhibited by museums internationally, nationally and in the Tampa Bay area at venues including the Museum of Modern Art, PS1 in New York and the National Art Museum of China in Beijing. His work has been collected by museums, galleries and private collectors in the United States and Asia. He was awarded the bronze medal by the Cultural Ministry of China, and he is also the recipient of numerous grants and foundation awards from institutions including the National Endowment for the Arts, the Freeman Foundation, Ford Foundation, and the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs.

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Fort Myers Film Festival returns to SBDAC for special Labor Day T.G.I.M. (08-25-18)

The Fort Myers Film Festival returns to the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center’s grand atrium for more Season 9 screenings for a very special Labor Day T.G.I.M. on September 3.

New to the term? Well, the acronym stands for “Thank God for Indie Mondays,” and it symbolizes the anticipation and excitement that area indie film lovers feel as the first Monday of the month draws near between August and February each season. That’s when hosts Eric Raddatz and Melissa DeHaven screen a number of the indie short (typically no longer than 15 minutes) and short short (as short as just a minute or two) films that have been submitted for inclusion in the Fort Myers Film Festival. Some are good. Others are bad. But they’re all worth talking about.

Shy? Wouldn’t know what to say? No worries. There will be celebrity judges on hand to start the discussion after each screening. But that’s just the start because Eric and Melissa want to hear from you. What was your take on the film? What worked or didn’t, what did you like or hate, and should the film be included in the film festival? Your opinion matters. Your vote counts. And as often as not, the audience picks up on facets of the film that escape the attention of Eric and the judges.

It’s all part of the fun of indie “intellectualization.”

What many cineastes appreciate most of all is the opportunity to rub shoulders with the celebrity judges, filmmakers and fellow film lovers at the after-party, where you can share an adult beverage (or two) and knosh on discounted appetizers at Twisted Vine Bistro.

So join host Eric Raddatz, co-host Melissa Tschari DeHaven and judges Stephanie Davis, John Davis, Jason Drew and Marc Collins for a fresh new set of short indie films, comedy and fun.

The house opens for cocktails at 6:30 and show starts at 7:00 p.m. in the Grand Atrium of the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center, located at 2301 First St., Fort Myers. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for seniors and students.

And to see who Eric and Melissa have tapped as celebrity judges, follow these links:

 

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FSW Painting Professor Dana Roes pinch hits in August as T.G.I.M. celeb judge (08-25-18)

Part of the fun of attending the Fort Myers Film Festival’s monthly T.G.I.M. screenings is the opportunity to bump into acquaintances and rekindle old friendships. For example, artist and FSW studio art professor Dana Roes was in attendance at the August 2018 T.G.I.M.

For her, it was a triumphant return to the Davis Art Center, where she had curated a show in the Capital Gallery in April. Titled Border(less), the wildly popular exhibition consisted of a collection of work produced by portfolio painting and conceptual art class student Amy Boomgaard, Joshann Burdick, Martha Delacruz, Peter Engdahl, Alejandro Gomez, Holly Hagan, Alyssa Hartford, Dalton Howard, Lewesa Major, Shannon O’Regan, Grant Syllaba, Jose Vanegas and Barbara Ann Wikoff.

But for everyone else who turned out for the August T.G.I.M., it represented a chance to learn more about one of the Southwest Florida’s most accomplished and fascinating art luminaries.

It happened because celebrity judge and News-Press photo-journalis Kinfay Moroti couldn’t make it to the screenings that night because he was covering slain officer Adam Jobbers-Miller’s funeral earlier in the day. So when T.G.I.M. co-host Eric Raddatz asked for a volunteer to take his place on the judging panel, FSW colleague and celebrity judge Dr. Wendy Chase conscripted Roes, who gamely accepted the challenge. Although it was her first time as a T.G.I.M. judge, she did a good job providing her own unique insights into the films that FMff screened for the audience on August 6.

Roes is an abstract artist who explores psychological and material space within her compositions. Her emphasis on “the notion of voids, missing pieces, inaccessible or unknowable spaces” clearly influenced her approach to dissecting and analyzing film. “Whether it is the psychological space of a lie, the mysterious space of multiple realities, or the indescribable space I feel when I close my eyes and face the sun, it is resistance to containment and the urge towards expansion that drives my work.”

You’ll find the rest of this story here.

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‘Peggy’ proves it’s possible for a girl to be too damn perfect (08-25-18)

If you didn’t have the chance to attend the T.G.I.M. screenings on August 6, you missed a handful of really fine films, and kicking off Season 9 was a short film by Justin Miller about a woman named Peggy.

Peggy is hosting a birthday party for her little boy. But we don’t meet Peggy initially. Instead, we meet two guests as they are dressing for the party and wrapping a present for the birthday boy.

The backyard party is something out of Michael Jackson’s Neverland. Although it doesn’t have a narrow gauge railroad, Ferris wheel, carousel or petting zoo, it does have an immense bounce house and other features that none of the other parents have a chance of replicating when it comes time to stage parties for their own children. In fact, from the cake to balloons, the grounds reek of perfection and that earns Peggy the near-unanimous opprobrium of her friends, neighbors and even her husband, who echo a common refrain in their internal dialogue: “Fuck you, Peggy!”

Several guests have converted their contempt into passive-aggressive action by bringing along birthday gifts that Peggy is certain to abhor. One brings a dart gun, and Peggy’s own husband gives his son a brand new puppy which he hopes will drive his wife crazy by doing his business all over Peggy’s perfectly-kept house, much to her vexation and chagrin.

But God loves Peggy, and sends an owl to swoop down and snag the little dog in his sharp, extended talons. Seeing what’s about to happen, the guest who brought along the dart gun dives for the weapon and takes aim at the owl. But ….

Read here for the rest of this story.

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DAAS exhibiting Union Artist Studios artists in August (08-24-18)

DAAS CO-OP Art Gallery & Gifts is exhibiting the art of Union Artist Studios members during the month of August.

Founded in 2012, Union Artist Studios is celebrating six years as Southwest Florida’s only organized artists’ studio. Located on the second floor of the Edwards Building on the Alliance for the Arts campus, the Union Artist Studios houses the creative spaces of 10 local artists.

“We are always here, especially on weekends, and we enjoy the inspiration this place brings us,” says Union member Julia Da Rocha, who has been with the group since 2016. “We bounce ideas off each other and collaborate in many events together. We are family here.” Da Rocha’s expressionistic and vibrant designs are licensed by denydesigns.com and featured by Joss & Main, One Kings Lane, Fab, Rue La La, Amazon, Houzz, Hautelook, and HGTV.

Alex Wilkinson and Lesley Morrow are also members of the Union. This mother and daughter duo share a space, but their styles are unique and very recognizable. Wilkinson’s work is figurative, but full of whimsy. Morrow’s is focused on portraits, created in a very loose and intriguing technique. Both artists joined the group in 2016.

Other members participating on the show are David Acevedo, Xavier Brignoni, Erik Schlake, John Scoppa, Frank Rodriguez and Dawn Scandale.

For more information about the gallery, please visit daascoop.com or call 239-590-8645. DAAS CO-OP Art Gallery is conveniently located in the Royal Palm Square in the heart of the SoCo Cultural District (socoswfl.com) at 1400 Colonial Blvd STE 84 in Fort Myers, FL. Current off-season business hours are Wednesday to Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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Alliance’s August members’ show to explore concept of ‘Identity’ (08-24-18)

The Alliance’s member exhibit explores the concept of identity – the factors that influence or determine our sense of who we are – that which makes one person distinct from another. The exhibition runs to September 29. The Alliance campus is located at 10091 McGregor Boulevard,  just south of the intersection of McGregor and Colonial boulevards.

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Alliance, Delta Sigma Theta and Progressive Women of SWFL to toast tenacity (08-24-18)

Sponsored by Vision 2020, the Fort Myers Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Progressive Women of Southwest Florida, the Alliance for the Arts will host A Toast to Tenacity on August 26. The event pays homage to the courageous women (and some men) behind the passage of the 19th Amendment, which guaranteed women the right to vote.

On August 26, 1920, suffragists across the nation raised a glass of grape juice (Prohibition was in effect, so they skipped the fermented stuff) to honor the amendment. The Alliance will repeat the feat with a grape juice toast of its own – and a program honoring both the famous and not-so-well known suffragists of nearly a century ago.

“Join us to learn about the tenacious women from diverse backgrounds who persisted for more than 70 years – even went to prison and endured other terrible hardships – until their basic right to vote was enacted into law,” states the Alliance in its press release announcing the event. “Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony were not alone in their commitment to gender equality. And neither are we!”

The Honorable Tommy Doyle, Supervisor of Elections for Lee County, will be in attendance for A Toast to Tenacity.

A Toast to Tenacity takes place in the main gallery from 5:30-7:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 26. The Alliance for the Arts is located at 10091 McGregor Blvd. in Fort Myers (just south of the intersection of McGregor and Colonial Blvd.).

An RSVP is required.

N.B.:

Florida was not one of the states that ratified the 19th amendment in 1920. However, conceding that the Amendment invalidated state laws against woman suffrage, Florida officials permitted women to vote in the general election in 1920. The following year, the Florida Legislature passed a measure recognizing as qualified electors all citizens over the age of 21. But Florida would not act to formally ratify the 19th Amendment until 1969. Taylor, “The Woman Suffrage Movement in Florida,” The Florida Historical Quarterly, Vol. 36, No. 1, July 1957.

On a local note, the Koreshan Unity in Estero took a pro-suffrage stance on the voting rights issue around the time that Francis Kennard was designing the new Lee County Courthouse in 1914. The Koreshan Unity advanced their position in the form of a play entitled Women, Women, Women, Suffragettes, Yes. “The Florida Photographic Collection includes images of both men and women dressing up as the opposite sex, at times to support the idea of equal voting rights and at other times to ridicule it. While humorous, the images are a reminder that for many, the suffrage question was often at odds with the longstanding belief that men and women occupied distinct and separate places in society.” (Photo 6, right.) Women’s Equality Day, The Florida Memory Blog, Aug. 24, 2015.

In fact, when the Florida House of Representatives failed to muster the needed three-fifths majority for passage of a resolution enfranchising women through an amendment to the Florida Constitution, one Representative (George G. Brooks of Monroe County) stated on the House floor that he did not “care to lower women from the pinnacle” upon which tradition had placed them, arguing that “politics is a dirty game . . . and women cannot mix with filth without some of it sticking.”

Murray Sims of Volusia was even more condescending. He stated that it was “impossible for women to be equals of men in determining questions involving suffrage as it was for them to be their equals physically.” Florida Times-Union, Apr. 23, 1919.

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Alliance to partner with Gulf Coast Humane Society in September for ‘Animals and the Arts’ (08-24-18)

The Alliance for the Arts is partnering with the Gulf Coast Humane Society for an event on Thursday, September 20 that it is calling “Animals and the Arts.” The event will highlight pets presented in a variety of different art mediums – including photography, canvas, music and film.

The two hour event runs from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. and includes Furry Friends Displayed in Art, a juried exhibit, reception music by the Gulf Coast Symphony, and an educational documentary entitled “Rescue For Paws.” The event will also be attended by GCHS’ adoptable furry ambassadors to make sure everyone can scratch that puppy-love itch!

The deadline for artists to submit work for the juried show is September 3.

Tickets are available in advance for $20, with hors d’oeuvres included. There will be a cash bar available as well.

For more information, please visit ArtinLee.org or telephone 239-939-2787.

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Alliance calls for submissions for ‘Dia de los Muertos: A Juried Exhibit’ (08-24-18)

The Alliance for the Arts has issued a call to artists for Dia de los Muertos: A Juried Exhibit coming in October. Exhibiting through November 3, this exhibit will be up during such high-traffic events as Pride, Italian Fest, Rocky Horror and the Arts on Tap Fundraiser.

In many parts of Mexico, South America and the United States, Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a time to remember and celebrate the lives of friends and family. More about reveling in life than remembering death, this unique day encourages us to connect with loved ones while reflecting on the ties that bind the past to present.

Artists should create pieces that showcase traditional Mexican sugar skulls flavored by the artist’s aesthetic. Submission categories include sculpture, painting (including oil, acrylic, collage, watercolor and mixed media), photography, prints and drawings. Artists may submit up to 3 artworks for consideration. All entries must be submitted online no later than September 20. To download the prospectus or submit artwork, visit ArtInLee.org/SugarSkulls.

“Community participation is a powerful part of this holiday,” says exhibitions coordinator Krista Johnson. “That’s why we’re calling on local artists to contribute to this lively and fun exhibit.”

The show’s opening reception is scheduled for 5:00-7:00 p.m. on October 5, with awards being announced at 6:00. There will be a $250 prize for Best in Show, $125 for 2nd place and $75 for 3rd place.

For more information about this exhibit, visit ArtInLee.org/SugarSkulls or call 239-939-2787.

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Alliance bringing back ‘Arts on Tap’ fundraiser (08-24-18)

The Alliance for the Arts is bringing back its annual fundraiser Arts On Tap. The event is scheduled for 7:00-10:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 20 on the Alliance campus at 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers, FL 33919.

The announcement comes alongside the nationwide celebration of American Craft Beer Week. Now in its second year, Arts On Tap is a taste of creativity in the Alliance gallery featuring the craft of local brewers benefiting the Alliance for the Arts. For one night only, guests can delight their senses with locally-handcrafted beers and spirits, hand-selected wines and culinary creations against a vibrant backdrop of local art.

Participating crafters include Big Blue Brewing, Bury Me Brewing, Eight Foot Brewing, Fort Myers Brewing Company, Momentum Brewhouse, Palm City Brewing, Point Ybel Brewing Company and Scotty’s Bierwerks, with more participants to be announced. The event is sponsored by Briers CPA, Custom Packaging and Products , EnSite, HBKS Wealth Advisors, Priority Business Solutions and Sanibel Captiva Community Bank. Sponsorships and visibility opportunities are also available at ArtInLee.org/OnTap.

Last year, Arts On Tap attracted 200 guests. Tickets are $75 and include unlimited tastings from participating breweries and distilleries, culinary creations, pub snacks, gallery admission, music and games. The first 75 guests to purchase a ticket will receive an exclusive Support Local pint glass.

“The Alliance for the Arts is all about supporting small, independent makers who have a story,” says development and marketing director Jessica Wisdom. “We’re excited to celebrate the art of craft beer for the second year in a row. In our never-ending quest to outdo ourselves, this year’s event will be bigger and better with more art, more food, more fun and of course more beer!”

Arts On Tap is a fundraising event for the Alliance for the Arts, a nonprofit visual and performing arts center located in the heart of Fort Myers. Since 1975, the Alliance has been transforming lives and improving community through the arts. Event proceeds support a creative hub that spurs self-expression, imagination and individuality.

Arts On Tap is for ages 21 and older. A state-issued form of I.D. is required.

For more information, call 239-939-2787 or visit ArtInLee.org/OnTap.

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Alliance announces dates for ‘Off the Wall’ holiday exhibit (08-24-18)

Each year, the Alliance for the Arts invites 100 members to submit two original 2D or 3D artworks for exhibition in the gallery beginning with the onset of the holiday shopping season. Called Off the Wall, this non-traditional art show features works of all mediums priced at $200 or less. All sales are “cash and carry,” meaning purchasers will get to take the piece with them when they buy it, rather than waiting until the end of the exhibit.

Make supporting local arts tops on your list this year by giving a gift that gives back. Make plans to do your Christmas shopping at the Alliance for the Arts this year. Betcha there’s 100 member-artists who would be delighted to have their art under your tree.

The show runs from November 9 through December 29. The opening reception is scheduled for 5:00-7:00 p.m. on November 9

For more information, please visit www.artinlee.org or telephone 239-939-2787.

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Alliance accepting submissions for 33rd Annual All Florida Juried Exhibit (08-24-18)

The Alliance’s annual All Florida Juried Exhibition features pieces created by artists working in a wide variety of media from all over the 65,000 square miles that make up Florida. The juried entries come together for an award-winning and exciting exhibition representing today’s contemporary Florida artists. The Alliance is accepting submissions online now through Monday, January 28, 2019. The show will exhibit March 8-29, with an opening reception from 5:00-7:00 p.m. on Friday, March 8. A conversational walk and talk through the gallery with the artists and juror will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 9.

Please visit ArtinLee.org for a prospectus or telephone 239-939-2787 for more information.

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Broadway Palm presents ‘Circus Transformus’ August 25 & 26 (08-23-18)

On August 25 and 26, Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre will present Circus Transformus, a visually-stunning, contemporary circus performance that incorporates dance, acrobatics, aerial arts and other skilled acts. With dozens of talented artists, Circus Transformus aims to entertain AND inspire its audience to rise to the challenge of healing planet Earth.

Circus Transformus tells the story of a young girl who awakens to find her world on the brink of disaster. She teams up with an unlikely group of allies to combat the forces that threaten her planet. But can they save it before it’s too late? This original story features a cast of local acrobats, aerialists, contortionists, fire performers and more and is a celebration of the awakening of the human spirit.

Producing Circus Transformus is Will Prather, owner of Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre, along with Christar Damiano and Carla Hyde, who are also the show’s creators and directors. Damiano and Hyde have a combined circus experience of over 50 years and are both passionate about environmental activism. Damiano has performed across the globe in such places as Mexico, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, India, Thailand and Hawaii. Hyde has delighted audiences since 1987 with her aerial artistry performing with the world renowned Flying Espanas and the Flying Lunas in circuses across the US, Canada and Puerto Rico.

Join Broadway Palm as they inspire audiences to Be The Change with Circus Transformus. Doors open for the Saturday, August 25 performance at 6:00 p.m. with a preshow in the lobby; Hors d ’Oeuvres are at 7:00 p.m.; the performance begins at 8:00 p.m. and there will be an after party with DJ Groove Chemist and a dessert bar until 12:00 a.m. Doors open for the Sunday performance at 4:00 p.m. with a preshow in the lobby; Hors d ‘Oeuvres are at 5:00 p.m.; and the performance is at 6:00 p.m.

This production is intended for mature audiences; parental discretion is advised.

Tickets are $50 to $65 and can be reserved by calling (239) 278-4422, by visiting BroadwayPalm.com or by stopping by the box office at 1380 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers.

  • Photo 2: Garrett Foster, Fire Performer
  • Photo 3: Devon Chanceric, Professional Circus Artist
  • Photo 4: Carla Hyde and Christar Damiano, Creators, Producers and Directors
  • Photo 5: Christar Damiano performing fire dance at dedication of Fire Dance sculpture in 2012.

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Here’s what you’ll see on the main stage at Broadway Palm this season (08-23-18)

The Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre’s upcoming season will feature eight main stage musicals. Read here to see what they are. Broadway Palm’s main stage opens on August 30, 2018 and runs through August 10, 2019. Show prices range from $45 to $75 with group and children’s prices available. Performances are Tuesday through Sunday evenings (no Tuesday evening performances May through October), with selected matinees. Individual tickets are now on sale.

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Off Broadway Palm’s current season will feature five shows (08-23-18)

The Off Broadway Palm Theatre is Broadway Palm’s second performance venue. The Off Broadway Palm’s season begins September 27, 2018 and runs through July 21, 2019, and here are the five shows you’ll see Off-Broadway. Ticket prices range from $39 to $59. Performances are Tuesday through Sunday evenings (no Tuesday evening performances May through October), with selected matinees. Individual tickets go on sale June 1st.

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CHANGE’s first grads perform ‘The Colored Museum’ at IMAG theater (08-23-18)

With a grant provided by the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, the Alliance for the Arts has embarked upon an exciting and somewhat daring program to expand the pool of local talent capable of taking on challenging African-American roles while concurrently engendering in minority communities a greater interest in and appreciation for both the visual and performing arts. The program is called Communities Harnessing the Arts to Nurture and Grow Equity, and it goes by the acronym of CHANGE.

One of the first steps in the initiative was a 9-week course at the Alliance that provided basic training and hands-on experience for eleven aspiring African-American actors. They graduated on August 5 by performing George Wolfe’s edgy The Colored Museum vignettes at the IMAG History & Science Center. All eleven actors turned in remarkably refined and passionate performances and promise to be talented and welcome additions to the Southwest Florida theater community for years to come. Read here for more on CHANGE and the play.

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Florida Rep includes nine shows in its 2018-2019 season (08-23-18)

Florida Repertory Theatre will begin its third decade of producing nationally-recognized, professional theater in the Fort Myers River District with its 2018-2018 season. Set to open September 21 and run to May 5 in the Historic Arcade and ArtStage Studio theaters, the nine-show season includes two musicals, multiple comedies, a modern American classic, a southeastern United States premiere, and a world-premiere adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.

The 2018-2019 season features five productions in the 393-seat Historic Arcade Theatre and four in the intimate 120-seat ArtStage Studio Theatre. It kicks off with the one-woman tour-de-force, Becoming Dr. Ruth, by Mark St. Germain – whose farce, George Washington’s Teeth, closed the current season on May 13.

Also featured next season is Million Dollar Quartet, Broadway’s rock ‘n’ roll sensation; Native Gardens, one of the hottest new comedies in the country right now; Tenderly, a salute to jazz icon Rosemary Clooney; August Wilson’s Fences, the Pulitzer Prize and multiple Tony Award-winning modern American classic fresh from a Broadway revival and Academy Award-winning film adaptation, and more!

Florida Repertory Theatre’s 21st season also includes two brand-new plays as part of its ongoing efforts to develop new works and nurture playwrights. Opening November 9 in the ArtStage Studio is Damascus by Bennett Fisher, an electrifying psychological thriller that was read as part of Florida Rep’s 2017 PlayLab. Opening November 30 in the Historic Arcade is a new adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol by Mark Shanahan, whose play The Dingdong had its regional premiere to critical acclaim at Florida Rep in 2016. Shanahan is a Broadway actor, regional theater veteran, and a familiar guest director at Florida Rep, who most recently helmed How the Other Half Loves earlier this year.

Read here for more on each of these nine productions.

“We are delighted to be celebrating the beginning of our third decade with this very exciting season,” said Interim Artistic Director Jason Parrish. “This diverse line-up of plays and musicals, both classic and contemporary, will break new ground for the theatre, introduce many new faces, and of course, showcase our ensemble of artists in a variety of roles. It is particularly exciting to be taking on one of August Wilson’s American Century Cycle plays that will introduce Florida Rep audiences to one of the great 20th century American playwrights. Our 21st will be a season of new beginnings, and we hope you’ll join us.”

Florida Rep’s weeknight performances (Tuesday-Thursday) in both venues will continue at the earlier 7:00 p.m. curtain time instituted last season. Friday and Saturday evening performances will begin at 8:00 p.m., with matinee performances on Wednesday (Arcade), Thursday (ArtStage), selected Saturdays, and Sunday continuing at the popular 2:00 p.m. curtain time.

Subscriptions start as low as $150 for 6 plays and offer the best seats and the biggest savings. Packages for 9, 8, 7, and 6 shows are on sale for both new and renewing season ticket holders through the box office at 239-332-4488. Single tickets are priced at $55/$45 for regular performances and $35/$25 for previews, and will go on sale July 17 through the box office and online at www.FloridaRep.org.

Florida Repertory Theatre performs in the Historic Arcade Theatre and the ArtStage Studio Theatre on Bay St. between Jackson & Hendry with limited free parking in the Fort Myers River District. Visit Florida Rep online at FloridaRep.org, and by following the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

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Florida Rep Education’s 2018-19 season focuses on ‘the journey’ (08-23-18)

Florida Rep Education’s 2018-2019 season will be filled with classic stories brought to the stage, electrifying Broadway musicals, a world premiere, and brand new competitive programming adjudicated by the industry’s leading professionals.

“This year’s education season places a thematic focus on journey and the struggles and joys one faces when overcoming the challenges of that journey,” said Education Director Kody C. Jones. “Everyone’s journey leaves a mark on us as a human as well as a mark on the world around us. With this season we challenge our students and patrons to reflect on their own journey as we navigate the trials and tribulations every young person faces in life as they mature in to adulthood.”

New this season, Florida Rep Education will be participating in the 2019 Junior Theatre Festival in Atlanta, GA. The Junior Theatre Festival is the world’s largest celebration of young people performing musical theatre. Florida Rep Education will bring 30 students from the Southwest Florida area to Atlanta to gather with peers from across 40 states and 6 countries. The Festival is a mix of adjudications, workshops for students and teachers, and special events like the “New Works Showcase” and “Direct From Broadway,” where Broadway’s best share their talents.

“Our Education Associate, Christina DeCarlo, has initiated a groundbreaking idea that will lead to a career-changing opportunity for our young actors,” Jones said. Past attendees and performers of JTF included Tony, Golden Globe, and Academy Award-winning songwriters Benj Pasek and Justin Paul; Emmy nominee Darren Criss; 11-time Grammy Award-winning musical theatre and film score composer Alan Menken; and critically acclaimed, Tony Award-winning songwriting duo Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty.

Education programs have grown exponentially in the past few seasons, and reach upwards of 35,000 young people and families each year. Overseen by Education Director Kody C. Jones, the department continues to educate, excite, and enlighten Southwest Florida audiences as our popular programs thrive and new ones take shape.

Florida Rep Education performs in several venues on tour and in the Historic Arcade Theatre on Bay Street between Jackson and Hendry with limited free parking in the Fort Myers River District. Visit Florida Rep Education online at FloridaRepEducation.org, and by following the Education Department on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat.

To see the shows that Florida Rep Education will be producing during its 2018-2019 season, read here.

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Here’s what you’ll see during Ghostbird’s 2018-2019 season (08-23-18)

Continuing its commitment to new, site-influenced theater, Ghostbird Theatre Company’s seventh season will feature an Art Walk installation at The Franklin Shops on First, a return to the Happehatchee Center in Estero, a train-themed connection of vignettes at the restored Atlantic Coastline Railway station in the downtown Fort Myers River District and Ghostbird’s popular 24-Hour Festival in the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center.

The Art Walk installation at the Franklin Shops is tentatively titled Windows/Stories. A formative work devised by Barry Cavin and Katelyn Gravel, this installation piece will take place October 5.

On November 10 & 11 and 17 & 18, Ghosbird returns to the scene of The Chicken Play at the Happehatchee Center in Estero with Boxes Are For What We Keep, a trilogy of brief plays by Barry Cavin. Three permutations of one tale plumb the interior dimensions of containers with which we hold what is dearest but also trap what we can never fully possess. These are love stories for all those old children who remember how the cherished butterfly dies.

You’ll have to go here for the rest of this announcement.

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‘It’s Only a Play’ on stage at Lab Theater through August 26 (08-23-18)

Keeping with the tradition of bringing fresh and edgy theater to the Southwest Florida area, the Laboratory Theater of Florida is producing the SWFL premiere of Terrence McNally’s It’s Only a Play. The play is on stage at The Lab through August 26. Read here for more information:

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Spotlight on ‘It’s Only a Play’ directors and crew (08-23-18)

It’s Only a Play is on stage now through August 26 at Lab Theater. Co-directed by Lucy Sundby and Scott Carpenter, the production stars Scott Carpenter, Danielle Channell, Aricka Shuck, Dave Chesebro, John David Strealy, Todd Lyman and Cameron Rogers.

Sundby is making her directorial debut … although she humbly demurs that she is merely co-directing with Scott Carpenter. It makes no difference. It’s always good when smart, passionate creative types like Sundby expand and extend their skill sets by doing something new and out of their comfort zone.

In case you’re not familiar with Sundby’s body of work, she wowed Lab Theater audiences with stellar performances as Lenny McGrath in Crimes of the Heart and Nicky in The Smell of the Kill. Her other theatrical credits include Cabaret, The Altruists, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, In The Next Room or The Vibrator Play, Picasso at The Lapine Agile, Mame, Nunsense, Steel Magnolias and numerous productions for The Naples Players at The Sugden Theatre, where she also performed with Stage 2 Improv for 16 years.

“Theater people! Am I right?” Sundby coaxes. “This quick-witted and hilarious show was fabulously cast and a joy to direct! It’s terribly enjoyable and will have you laughing till you cry!”

The play is billed as an peek behind the curtain that provides an inside look at Broadway. No doubt! The play is a laugh riot for anyone possessing even a cursory connection to the topsy-turvy world of live theater. But it isn’t necessary to have any familiarity with theater or its various denizens to enjoy this fast-paced foray.

Read here for more.

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What’s up at Lab Theater after ‘It’s Only a Play’ (08-23-18)

Lab Theater has scheduled plenty of other high-quality, high-energy productions during its 2018-2019 season following It’s Only a Play. Read here for the productions that The Lab will be producing following It’s Only a Play.

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New Phoenix compresses inaugural season to accommodate theater renovations (08-23-18)

A new community theater will open in Fort Myers soon, but first it must make numerous renovations to its space at 13211 McGregor Boulevard (roughly midway between College and Cypress Lake). All building permits are now in place and the theater’s contractor has provided a construction calendar that promises completion of all renovations and the issuance of a certificate of occupancy in November, 2018 for the 96 seat theater facility.

The mission of the new theatre company is to entertain and enlighten the community, celebrate diversity, and inspire imagination. The theater is the brainchild of Brenda Kensler (who serves as president), Anthony Neri (vice-president), Lori Riti, Debra Neri, James Robinson, Alide Jarbeau and Tom Riti, who have worked together as actors and directors at Cultural Park Theater in Cape Coral and The Laboratory Theatre of Florida in downtown Fort Myers.

The name is strategic.

“We all come from previous experiences in the theater — some good and some not so good,” divulges co-founder Lori Riti, whose stage credits since arriving in Southwest Florida include Chris in Calendar Girls, Frankie in Frankie and Johnny at the Clair de Lune, Kate in Kiss Me Kate, Elaine in Arsenic and Old Lace, the niece in The Sunshine Boys, Nikki in Musical Comedy Murders of 1940, Ms. Casewell in Mousetrap, Mrs. Smith in Meet Me in St. Louis, and roles in The Laramie Project, The Gay Marriage Plays and Agnes of God at Lab Theater.

“We feel like this is the beginning of something fresh and new for all of us – a chance for us to be reborn.”

High on Phoenix’s agenda is bringing greater diversity and more roles for women in the local theater scene. The theater will even have a mechanical lift that will convey handicapped actors, directors and stage hands onto the boards and backstage facilities.

New Phoenix will open its inaugural season in January, 2019 with Marvin’s Room, a dark comedy by playwright Scott McPherson that affords a moving view of one woman’s commitment to family and correlative response to despair.

The season will include three other shows, including one musical. Two shows were eliminated to allow ample time for the completion of all renovations and the installation of all necessary lighting and sound equipment and computer technology.

Read here for the full schedule of shows that New Phoenix will produce during its inaugural season.

Tickets will go on sale at a date yet to be announced.

For more information, please visit newphoenixtheatrefortmyers.orgfollow The New Phoenix Theatre on Facebook or telephone 239-284-5214.

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Only three more performances of world premiere of ‘Repossessed’ (08-23-18)

Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance for the Arts kicks off its 25th consecutive theater season with a world premiere play, Repossessed by Greg Lam. Winner of Theatre Conspiracy’s 19th annual Janet and Bruce Bunch New Play Contest, Repossessed explores questions of morality and authenticity amidst a world of rapidly changing technology and the ethics that come with it.

The play follows a couple by the name of Rich and Gretchen, who seem to have the ideal marriage until they learn that their personalities and memories were manufactured by a mysterious biotech company, which installed them into their brains. When they suddenly lose the ability to afford this service, the company repossesses their lives.

Read here for the rest of this announcement.

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Theatre Conspiracy’s 25th season denoted by innovation (08-23-18)

Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance will celebrate its 25th consecutive season with beloved classics, comedic favorites and award-winning new plays from fresh voices.

“We’re celebrating the past, present and future of Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance for the Arts this season,” says founder and producing artistic director Bill Taylor. “Our productions will reflect on the incredible work that has shaped the Southwest Florida theater community, as well as welcome the journey of our next 25 years.”

New this year will be a 7:30 curtain time for evening performances, audio described shows and even more talk-backs.

Performances are Thursday, Friday and Saturdays with a new 7:30 p.m. start time. Sunday matinees will remain at 2:00 p.m.

For theatregoers who are blind or have moderate to severe vision loss, the Alliance will provide a specially-trained describer who verbalizes what’s happening on stage during pauses in dialogue. The “audio describer” uses a headset microphone, while individuals using the service listen through a receiver with a single earpiece. Reservation of headsets is required prior to the show by calling 239-939-2787.

To widen the post-show conversation and discuss what the art onstage means to us as individuals and as a society, the Alliance will facilitate a community conversation through talkbacks on selected dates. Talkbacks allow the audience to ask questions and express their thoughts and ideas on issues revealed in the play through the form of meaningful discussion with the cast or panel guests. The opportunity is included with ticket purchase.

Here are the shows which Theatre Conspiracy will produce during its 2018-2019 season.

Theater lovers can save up to $42 with a season subscription. Season subscriptions range from $115 per person for 5 shows to $140 per person for all 7 shows. Individual tickets to each show are $26, $11 for students or $22 for Alliance members. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the box office at 239-939-2787, visit 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers, FL or go online at www.ArtInLee.org/Theatre.

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Check out productions remaining in The Naples Players’ current season (08-23-18)

The Naples Players’ (TNP) 65th Anniversary Season is now under way and it is packed with dazzling musicals, heartfelt comedies, magical adventures and the world premiere play of local playwright Laura Lorusso. The diverse programming is designed to provide Southwest Florida with high-quality, fully-realized artistic productions that appeal to TNP’s seasoned and novice theatre-lovers.

“Our 65th Anniversary season showcases the reasons that The Naples Players has become one of the leading theatres of its kind in the country,” says The Naples Players’ Artistic Director Bryce Alexander. “A season about dreams, and the way we achieve our dreams together – we could think of no better way to celebrate the last 65 years while looking forward to the next.”

There will be not only a fabulous celebration of the 65th anniversary of Naples Players, but also the 20th anniversary of the Naples Players at Sugden Theatre on Fifth Avenue. “And Naples Art Association, our sister organization across the street, is also celebrating its 20th anniversary on Fifth Avenue (in the district), so I can assure you there’s going to be a lot to celebrate this year,” Alexander adds.

The event is planned for early 2019.

Read here to see the shows that TNP will produce during the remainder of its 2018-2019 season.

Hot Works holding two fine art shows this season (08-22-18)

Hot Works LLC has announced that it will be holding two weekend art shows in Naples during the upcoming season. Both will be held at the Galleria Shoppes on Vanderbilt. The 1st Bi-Annual Naples Fine Art Show will take place on Saturday and Sunday, December 15 and 16, with the second returning to the Galleria Shoppes on Saturday and Sunday, March 30 and 31, 2019.

Hot Works emphasizes quality not quantity at its fine art shows. Festival Director Patty Narozny focuses on originality, artist accessibility, cultural diversity and community enrichment. There is also a youth art competition and show to foster art education among aspiring young artists.

The Galleria Shoppes at Vanderbilt is an upscale lifestyle shopping center located on the northwest corner of Vanderbilt Beach Road and Airport Pulling Road, which is reputed to be the fourth busiest intersection in Naples. Conveniently located across the street from the Ritz Carlton Hotel and the Greg Norman Tiburon Golf Course and with casual and fine dining, one-of-a-kind boutiques, Mediterranean-themed architecture and pedestrian-friendly covered walkways, the 226,000-square-foot shopping center is an ideal locale for high-end art shows. And for art enthusiasts who are also sports buffs, Bokamper’s Sports Bar & Grill is on site. Owned by former Miami Dolphins linebacker Kim Bokamper, the restaurant has already garnered a 2011 Choice Awards Star for best sports bar in southwest Florida.

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ArtFest a top 25 show says Sunshine Artist and Art Fair Sourcebook magazines (08-22-18)

Each year, Sunshine Artist Magazine ranks the nation’s outdoor art shows and festivals. Based on 2017 sales, the magazine ranked ArtFest Fort Myers the #16 art festival in the nation last year.

“Recognition that brings positive attention to our community is always the icing on the cake for us,” comments ArtFest Fort Myers Executive Director Sharon McAllister. “We work year-round to bring a wide variety of talented artists to downtown Fort Myers the first weekend in February and it is gratifying to know that we have the support of our art buying patrons! Many of our friends and neighbors tell us that they wait all year to buy original art at our festival.”

ArtFest Fort Myers has also been rated as one of America’s Best Art Fairs by ArtFair Calendar and as Top 25 by Art Fair Sourcebook, in addition to earning numerous awards from the Florida Festival & Events Association and the International Festivals and Events Association.

The annual juried fine art festival will take place February 1, 2 & 3, 2019 in the Fort Myers River District. Join the experience with 200 artists from across the county and around the world; the largest high school art exhibit and competition in south Florida and free interactive art experiences for children of all ages.

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ArtFest Fort Myers accepting applications for 2019 festival until September 11 (08-22-18)

Best Aerial of AllArtFest Fort Myers is accepting applications through September 11 for participation in its 2019 juried show. Featuring the work of 200 artists, ArtFest Fort Myers attracted 90,000 art lovers and collectors to the largest outdoor gallery in Southwest Florida on the first weekend in February in 2018. And attendance continues to grow.

“Creating an artwork-selling festival for artists is the focus of our year-round professional staff, with artfest copa di vino19 years of consistent management,” states ArtFest in its Call to Artists. “Targeting art buyers throughout Southwest Florida and beyond – from Marco Island to Sarasota and east to West Palm Beach – our promotional campaign includes all forms of media. We also understand the importance of providing great artist amenities over festival weekend to ensure that our artists are Crowd Shot 12stress free and ready to share their work with our dedicated attendees.”

How are festival artists chosen? 

Each October, ArtFest Fort Myers brings together a panel of professional artists who view submitted images and score each applying artist on a range of 1 to 7 points. The artists with the highest scores are then invited to participate in ArtFest.

Crowd Shot 09“Our jury panel varies each year but always represents a broad base of expertise with regard to artistic mediums – theirs is the difficult task of evaluating who is the ‘best-of–the-best’ from the hundreds of artists who wish to join ArtFest Fort Myers!” ArtFest points out. “Our jury process is open to artists and patrons – please contact us for more information.”

ArtFest Fort Myers works year-round to produce a creative community celebration that also includes:

  • Crowd Shot 05 at BasinPublix Art Yard, an interactive arts/crafts area for children, including a “children only” shopping gallery and youth stage performances
  • Art Under 20, an exhibition and competition for Lee County high school students, offering cash awards (sponsored by Suncoast Credit Union)
  • Chalk Block, a weekend high school sidewalk chalk competition mentored by professional chalk artists (sponsored by Truly Nolen Pest Control)
  • Tents by Harborside 01 (2)VIP Experience for loyal art patrons who wait all year to make art purchases (sponsored by Ron Bucher, Raymond James

The deadline for submissions is September 11. ArtFest takes place in 2019 on February 1, 2 & 3. For Artist Application information, contact ArtFest Fort Myers at 239-768-3602, email info@ArtFestFortMyers.com or visit https://artfestfortmyers.com/artist-info/.

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Naples Art Association accepting applications for 31st Annual Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts (08-22-18)

Crowd Shot 01 (4)The Naples Art Association is currently accepting applications for inclusion in its three outstanding outdoor art festivals, The Downtown Naples New Year’s Weekend Art Fair, Naples National Art Festival and The Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts.

The 31st Annual Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts is one of the last major art festivals of the winter season and a favorite festival for artists, art enthusiasts and collectors. If you would like to Tents 03exhibit in this show, here’s what you will need to know:

  • Dates: Saturday and Sunday, March 23-24, 2019
  • Festival Hours: Saturday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Location: 5th Avenue South, Downtown Naples
  • Premier Crowd Shot 01Accept 250 artists max
  • Application fee: $35
  • Booth fee: $450 for 10×10
  • Cancellation refund policy: Full refund: 02/04/18; 50% refund: 02/25/18
  • Set up specifics: 4 a.m., early morning set up only;
  • On street set up in quads: No electrical
  • Application deadline: 12/09/18
  • Jury Process begins: 12/14/18
  • Crowd Shot 11Status Notification: 12/28/18
  • Booth Fee Due: 01/18/19
  • Artist Info Sent: 02/26/19
  • Wait List Acceptance: 01/18/19
  • Application available online at juriedartservices.com beginning June 1, 2018

The Naples Downtown Art Show was voted one of the top five favorite events by local businesses and residents. It was also rated in the top 15 by Sunshine Artist’s survey of all artists in the country.

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Naples Art Association accepting applications for Naples National Art Festival (08-22-18)

Crowd Shot BestThe Naples Art Association is currently accepting applications for inclusion in its three outstanding outdoor art festivals, The Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Fair, Naples National Art Festival and The Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts.

Naples National is consistently voted among the Crowd Shot 01top 25 art festivals in the country by Sunshine Artist Magazine and was ranked #15 last year. As one of the oldest festivals in Collier County, Naples National is counted by the local community as among its premiere, must–see events, thanks to the high quality of art, the engaging personalities of the artists and the festive atmosphere.

Aerial 02If you are interested in exhibiting in the 40th Naples National Art Festival, here’s what you will need to know:

  • Dates: Saturday & Sunday, February 23-24, 2019
  • Festival Hours: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Location: Cambier Park & 8th Street South, downtown Naples
  • Accept 190 artists max
  • Application fee: $35
  • Crowd Shot GreatBooth fee: $625 for 10×10
  • Cancellation refund policy: Full refund: 01/11/19; 50% refund: 2/04/19
  • Set up specifics: Friday set up on 2/22,
  • Park and street setting
  • Application deadline: 10/30/18
  • Jury Process begins: 11/09/18
  • Status Notification: 11/27/18
  • Booth Fee Due: 12/15/18
  • Crowd Shot 04Artist Info Sent: 01/21/19
  • Wait List Acceptance: 12/15/18
  • Application available online at juriedartservices.com beginning June 1, 2018

To improve the quality of the show and to provide more sales opportunities for our artists, NAA has reduced the number of booths available from 270 to 190. “This will allow artists greater exposure and less competition,” states NAA in its prospectus for the show. “Additionally, the park layout, will consist of one loop making it easier for customers to view all artist’s booths. However, there is a corresponding increase in booth fees.”

The is the only Naples Art Association show that offers cash awards for Best of Show, Best 2D, Best 3D and Awards of Distinction in 2D and 3D. The amounts are:

  • Best of Show – $2,000
  • Best 2D – $500
  • Best 3D – $500
  • Awards of Distinction 2D – 5 awards at $200 each
  • Awards of Distinction 3D – 5 awards at $200 each

Awards will be presented at the band shell in Cambier Park at 5:00 pm on Saturday. NAA staff or volunteers will notify an artist if they need to be present at the awards ceremony on Saturday. Awards are given based on the same criteria used for the jury process. The winning artists are invited to participate in the following year’s show and receive jury exempt status but must still pay his/her booth fee.

The mission of the Naples Art Association is to expand cultural opportunities, broaden education and enrich SWF through the visual arts. Proceeds from the Naples National Art Show support educational programming at The Naples Art Association.

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Naples Art Association accepting applications for 23rd Annual Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Fair (08-22-18)

East Entry 02The Naples Art Association is currently accepting applications for inclusion in its three outstanding outdoor art festivals, The Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Fair, Naples National Art Festival and The Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts.

Start your new year off in sunny Florida. New opportunities await you at the 23rd Annual Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Fair. This fine art festival draws professional artists from around the country and was ranked #20 in the nation by Sunshine Artist Magazine.

If you are interested in exhibiting at this show, here’s what you will need to know:

  • Dates: Saturday and Sunday, January 5-6, 2019
  • Festival Hours: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Location: 5th Avenue South, Downtown Naples
  • Accept 250 artists max
  • Application fee: $35
  • Booth fee: $450 for 10×10
  • Cancellation refund policy: Full refund: 11/23/18; 50% refund: 12/07/18
  • Set up specifics: 4 a.m. early morning set up only: On street set up in quads; No electrical
  • Application deadline: 09/09/18
  • Jury Process begins: 09/14/18
  • Status Notification: 09/24/18
  • Booth Fee Due: 10/25/18
  • Artist Info Sent: 11/29/18
  • Wait List Acceptance: 10/25/18
  • Application available online at juriedartservices.com beginning June 1, 2018

 

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Naples Art Ass’n. accepting submissions for next season’s Art in the Park (08-22-18)

Art in the Park LogoAre you ready for the 2018-2019 season of Art in the Park? The Naples Art Association (NAA) proudly connects artists with art shoppers in another terrific season of Art in the Park.

Since 1957, Art in the Park has showcased paintings in oil and acrylics, watercolors, mixed Art in the Park 01media, photography, sculpture, ceramics, glass art, jewelry and wood-working created by members in good standing of the Naples Art Association. For art lovers, it’s a casual, fun-filled venue for meeting local artists and becoming acquainted with their work. It is believed to be the first outdoor art show held in Naples. And the tradition continues for the 2017-2018 art fair and festival season.

Art in the Park 04Art in the Park is held between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on the first Saturday of each month from November through April. Because of its long tradition, prestige and the interest and number of people who routinely turn out for the show, many NAA members seek admission to the show. Applicants go through a jury process.

“Art in the Park is a membership opportunity, providing artists a venue to sell and market their Art in the Park 05work while broadening their customer base,” notes the Naples Art Association in its call to artists for the 2018-2019 season. “It also provides a setting for artists to interact with other artists sharing ideas, industry changes and the camaraderie of creative people. It is an opportunity for both artists and the public to engage in enlightening conversations about art.”

Make and Take Art 01The one-day fair takes place on Park Street adjacent to The von Liebig Art Center in the northwest corner of Cambier Park. Located just a block and a half from historic Fifth Avenue South, Art in the Park is within walking distance of trendy European boutiques, sidewalk cafes and iconic art galleries such as Sheldon Fine Art, Call of Africa’s Native Visions Gallery and Shaw Gallery of Fine Art Demo Booth 01Art. The show is also just three minutes by car from fabled Gallery Row and the Third Street South Gallery District. The January show is also held in conjunction with the Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Fair, which will be held next season on Saturday and Sunday, January 5 & 6, 2019.

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Spotlight on Art in the Park artists Broker, Limont and Park (08-22-18)

The Naples Art Association proudly hosts Art in the Park on the first Saturday of the month from November through April in Cambier Park. Each event features over 40 artists showcasing their unique work to an audience in the thousands. Among this elite group are Tamara Broker, Mary Limont and Edward R. Park.

For over 35 years, Tamara Broker has explored various mediums, including illustrating a children’s book. She has participated in shows and gallery exhibits in Washington State, San Francisco and San Diego, among others. Ultimately, she found her niche in seed pods.

“To me the pod is endless,” Tamara effuses. “It opens a new way of using and repurposing, along with my paint and galvanized metal. I have found a happy place on my lanai in the swamp, surrounded by nature, provided by God – the best artist – along with my animals and family that brings me joy”.

Naples artist Mary Limont takes her inspiration from nature and combines fossils, clay, copper, sterling silver, and found objects with colored natural stones to create her unique jewelry pieces. She finds that the process of making her jewelry keeps her connected with the beauty and reality of nature and she hopes the resulting pieces of wearable art provide her customers with the same bond.

Edward Park is an internationally-recognized artist who has been painting for over 50 years. He is a master of living art, including realistic, impressionist, and abstract styles and is acclaimed for his palate knife technique and brilliant color combinations. Edward has also developed a unique style for his museum quality fine art – a mark of his eastern and western influences.

For more information about becoming an Art in the Park artist, please click here.

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Boulderbrook Productions accepting submissions for SWFL art festivals (08-22-18)

Boulderbrook Productions hosts a number of boutique art festivals in Southwest Florida each season. It is currently accepting submissions for:

  • The Sanibel SCA Art Festival (January 18 & 19, 2019); deadline: September 7;
  • Bonita Springs Invitational at The Promenade (February 16 & 17, 2019); deadline: October 1;
  • Naples Masters Art Festival (March 2 & 3, 2019); deadline: October 1; and
  • Bonita Bay Masters Art Festival at The Promenade (March 30 & 31, 2019); deadline October 14.

You must apply online at  http://www.boulderbrook.net/.

NB: Applications are closed for four of Boulderbrook’s art shows, vis: The Art Festival at Mercato (January 26 & 27, 2019), Bonita Bay Invitational Art Festival (November 17 & 18), Sanibel Masters Art Festival (Novembe 23 & 24), and Art Festival at the Sanibel Shops (December 8 & 9).

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