DUNEDIN — Two events. One stop. Endless compliments on your taste in art.
Tonight and Saturday, the Dunedin Fine Art Center offers a chance to fill your home or apartment with gently used sculptures, oils, pastels, pottery and more at recession-friendly prices.
And once you've loaded up the car with your finds, have a little fun as you step inside the minds of 10 creative artists via PODS, or Portable On Demand Storage units, located in the art center's parking lot. These kings and queens of creativity have turned the boxy shapes into figments of their own imaginations by means of multimedia installations.
The two concurrent events — Trashy Treasures and Contain It! — are tonight and Saturday at the art center, 1143 Michigan Blvd.
This evening, an arty party starting at 7 p.m. will include drinks, hot dogs and live music by d'Visitors. Tickets cost $10.
Saturday, admission to both Trashy Treasures and Contain It!, held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., is free.
Tuesday, hundreds — perhaps thousands — of pieces of once-loved artwork were lined up against the walls and on tabletops inside the Entel Family Gallery.
Ken Hannon, associate executive director of the art center, surveyed the colorful cache and said, "This is everything from trashy art to your fondest treasures."
Not everyone will agree which is which.
"It's definitely a matter of taste," he said.
Nudes will be displayed in the "Tunnel of Love," a discreet curtained area.
Prices start at $5. Usually, an item's worth is simply unknown.
"People have been known to take home things that turned out to be very valuable," Hannon said. "We don't research them ahead of time. It's up to the buyer to discover their treasures."
A poster by Salvador Dalí, an oil by one of the Florida Highwaymen and an original print by Joan Miro were seen on Tuesday, all part of a random amalgamation of what people have donated.
"Every year, the sale takes on a life of its own," said volunteer Gail Gamble. "It's very unpredictable; you never know what you will find."
Selected Trashy Treasures will be up for bid during a silent auction tonight. Others, with prices marked, will also be for sale.
Saturday's sale will include art supplies as well as whatever art didn't sell today.
Recently, artist Kim Millspaugh, 37, an adjunct professor at the University of South Florida, was busy tacking colorful crocheted pieces, "soft sculptures" as she calls them, to a wall in her PODS unit.
Crocheting is a hobby she took up two years ago. It was a way to express her inner creativity without the mess and cleanup of paints — not to mention the possible toxicity if they were swallowed by her preschooler.
Now she has documented her newfound creativity in her installation and hopes other moms will relate.
"This represents my transition from a working painter and artist to a mother," she said.
In another PODS unit, Chris Musina, an artist who has worked in sculpture studios, dropped tangerine-colored "leaves" around the feet of a bright orange deer with golden antlers. An arrow pierced its ribs.
He said the scene was "an Americanization of a Slovenian folk tale about a man who tries to kill a deer for its golden antlers but in the end he dies."
It's a statement about greed and nature's power over man, he said.
Eight other artists will also share their thoughts and feelings through this unconventional medium during Contain It!