Make us your home page

Art Planner: Ya La'ford's 'labyrinths' at Chihuly Collection, plus gallery shows


Ya La'ford's murals have become increasingly immersive, full-on installations. Give her a space and she will cover every square inch with mysterious linear or geometric patterns that make viewers feel as if they have entered either an ancient Mayan temple or an alien starship.

A new interactive work at the Chihuly Collection, 400 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg, will include her signature "labyrinths," enhanced with LED lighting and a sound component, which should further the sense of being in another dimension. Grounding it all will be recorded readings by Helen Pruitt Wallace, St. Petersburg's poet laureate.

La'ford has worked hard for her increasing prominence as an artist. She first attended law school, then switched gears to earn a master's degree in art. She's a college professor and, of course, a busy artist. You may have seen some of her previous work at the SHINE Mural Festival, the Dr. Carter Woodson Museum and the Dunedin Fine Art Center, to name a few.

Chihuly Collection executive director Andy Schlauch instituted the program of temporary exhibitions in a space created after remodeling several years ago. Other shows have featured glass artists to complement the stunning glass works by Dale Chihuly, probably the best known glass artist in the world.

So La'ford's Echoes: Universal Signals is a departure and a dramatic one. It is the final temporary exhibition at the gallery before it closes Aug. 1 to relocate to larger space on Central Avenue across the street from its owner, the Morean Arts Center.

A free opening reception is from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday. The main galleries housing the Chihuly Collection will be closed during the event. Regular hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $14.95, $10.95 students and free for kids younger than 5. (727) 822-7872.


There are actually three Moreans: the Morean Arts Center, Morean Center for Clay and the Chihuly Collection. I'm highlighting the last separately, but there is also a lot going on at the other Moreans.

The Morean Arts Center hosts the 98th annual Members Show, an eclectic mix packed with work by 200 of them. Probably any medium (except video) and style is represented by professional artists and gifted amateurs. The center, 719 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. The show continues through Aug. 13. Free. (727) 822-7872.

The Morean Center for Clay is bidding farewell to recent artists-in-resience Haley Swanson and Eric Ordway with their first solo shows, which continue through July 31. Congratulations. The Center for Clay, 420 22nd St. S, St. Petersburg, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Free. (727) 822-7872.


Summer is the time Clayton Galleries owner Cathy Clayton highlights all the artists she represents and it's quite a stable of thoroughbreds. She has two summer shows, and this is the second one. The list is long but they're all so good, I wanted to include them all: David Adix, Donne Bitner, Natty Moss Bond, Peter Brown, Jeanne Cameron, Robin Cody, Dolores Coe, Lynn Davison,Virginia Derryberry, Benjamin Dimmitt, Billie Hightower, Cassandra James, Tim Kennedy, Lennie Kesl, Carl Knickerbocker, Jeffrey Kronsnoble, Peter Kuentzel, Karen Tucker Kuykendall, Lynn Manos, Bruce Marsh, Kate Norris, Yoko Nogami, George Pappas, Lucca Pizorno, Stacy Rosende, Claudia Ryan, Roberta Schofield, Laura, Waller, Joyce Ely-Walker and Kathy Wright. The gallery, 4105 S MacDill Ave., Tampa, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The show continues through Aug. 20. Free. (813) 831-3753.

Art Planner: Ya La'ford's 'labyrinths' at Chihuly Collection, plus gallery shows 07/20/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 20, 2016 11:10am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Seasoned cast scores an extra-base hit for St. Petersburg Opera with 'Faust'


    TAMPA — Charles Gounod's Faust sets the table early. The world-weary philosopher immortalized in a dramatic poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe is in his study, lamenting his state of affairs. He's willing to give away everything he has to be young again, even his soul.

    The St. Petersburg Opera Company begins its season with Faust, in a production seemingly aligned with the original intent of French composer Charles Gounod and librettists Jules Barbier and Michel Carre. [St. Petersburg Opera Company]
  2. Blake High grad Taylor Trensch lands lead role in 'Dear Evan Hansen' on Broadway


    For those who saw Taylor Trensch grow up in Tampa, his rise from promising student to star is heartwarming and entirely predictable. In January, Trensch, 28, will be moving into the title role of Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway, one of the hottest tickets in theater.

    Taylor Trensch, a 2007 Blake High graduate, will play the title role in Broadway's Dear Evan Hansen. Courtesy of Frank Trensch.
  3. A scene from "Epiphany."
  4. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Oct. 22


    Clearwater Jazz Holiday: The Avett Brothers: The Avett Brothers, with their blend of folk, bluegrass and rock, lead the lineup. 1:30 p.m., Coachman Park, 301 Drew St., Clearwater. $16 per day, $45 reserved, $170 VIP. (727) 461-5200.

    AUSTIN, TX - MARCH 15:  (L-R)  Joe Kwon, Bob Crawford, Seth Avett, and Scott Avett of The Avett Brothers pose for a portrait at the "May It Last: A Portrait Of The Avett Brothers" Premiere - 2017 SXSW Conference and Festivals on March 15, 2017 in Austin, Texas.  (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for SXSW)
  5. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Oct. 21


    Conor Oberst: The Bright Eyes mastermind will be joined by opener, the Felice Brothers. 8 p.m., Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. $30.50-$36. (727) 791-7400.

    Handout photo of Conor Oberst, performing Oct. 21 at the State Theatre in St. Petersburg. Credit: Grandstand Media