SECOND SATURDAY ARTWALK: ALWAYS REFRESHING
Using "fresh" to describe this venerable St. Petersburg event may seem contradictory. But each month, year in and year out, you'll find new art and fine craft on view and for sale in dozens of galleries and studios.
It began as a several-block area that had a few arts venues and fewer restaurants and, over the decades, has expanded to include several arts districts. Trying to walk to all of them would require the stamina of a marathon runner.
So that's good news for the community, right?
Yes it is; we can brag about our vibrant arts scene.
Here's a caveat, though: We have a vibrant arts scene. As an art market, I think we are less so.
Many gallery owners have come and gone over the years because they couldn't support themselves. Many also offer framing services to augment income. I have theories about why we're more an art-loving than art-buying population.
I would love to know what you think.
Now back to the Second Saturday Artwalk and two examples of new offerings.
The historic train station in the Warehouse District is home to the Morean Center for Clay and we should all give thanks to Beth Morean, its owner, who recently turned over its ownership to the Morean Arts Center. It has always been an amazing space, with studios and kilns of all kinds for ceramics artists and students. Now it also has a refurbished "great room" for special events such as "Exposure: The Intimacy of Art," a collaborative project with photographers shooting artists as they work.
Opening reception at the center, 420 22nd St. S, St. Petersburg, is from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday. It's open from 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday for the art walk and jury awards will be announced at 8 p.m. Sunday brunch features a talk-back with the artists and photographers from 1 to 4 p.m. For brunch tickets, go to eventbrite.com.
Art Lofts are studios, not a gallery, perched on the second floor of Florida CraftArts, with their own entrance at 10 Fifth St. N. They're working spaces but on Artwalk night, they open up to participants so you can peek into the creative digs of artists and chat with them. In addition to the paintings and drawings one would expect, you'll also find mixed media, photography and jewelry on display. "Art'N We Thankful" (clever title!) opens Saturday from 5 to 9 p.m.
For information about Second Saturday Artwalk with venues and map, go to stpeteartsalliance.org.
STUDIO 1212: HOLIDAY SHOPPERS ALERT
Studio 1212 is the oldest artists' cooperative in the Tampa Bay area, founded in 1970 by former students of the great painter William Pachner. Throughout the year, they offer free art critiques to all comers (and they're supportive and gentle) along with workshops. Their annual holiday boutique is Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m. (so you can shop there, then hit downtown St. Petersburg for the Artwalk) at 1405 Cleveland St., Clearwater.
Twenty artists will display their work in media that includes watercolor, oil, acrylic, pastel, ceramics, ink, jewelry and collage along with decorations, cards and gifts made by the artists. Proceeds from this event will be donated to the art department at Calvin Hunsinger School that serves K-12 exceptional education students. studio1212.net.