Make us your home page

Travel-inspired art shown at Progress Energy Art Gallery

The deer, it seemed, were everywhere. They were where you might expect them to be: in the woods and on the ski slopes of Indianhead Mountain in the "Big Snow Country" of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. But they also often ventured into town, sometimes invading back yards to munch on the summer blooms or leave telltale tracks in the snow in winter.

"It was amazing to watch. They were almost tame," said Jane Wertanen, 69, of Port Richey, a former art teacher who started taking photographs when she resided, for a time, in the place where her husband, Alvin, grew up.

Then she took to her easel to paint what she had seen.

The result: an oil painting called Resilience that is hanging at the Progress Energy Art Galley in New Port Richey. It's part of an exhibit called "On and Off the Beaten Path," featuring the works of about 20 area artists through Jan. 26.

"It's meant to take the viewer on a journey through the artist's eyes," said gallery director Nancy Ciesla, pointing out a photograph of a simple beach gate taken in Volusia County by New Port Richey resident Bette MacDonald called Gate to Wilbur-by-the-Sea.

"Unless you've been there you'd have never seen that gate," Ciesla said. "This exhibit is taking people to a place they've never been."

Indeed, the works at the modest gallery take a visitor from the waters off Key West to the tenement rooftops in Brooklyn, a German cemetery and a hospital garden in Arles, France.

The latter was painted Tampa impressionist-realist Terry Klaaren, who followed in the strokes of Vincent Van Gogh, who painted that garden twice during his stays in 1888 and 1889 after he cut off his left ear.

Adding to the historical aspect is Hudson resident Carol Spicuglia's muted painting of a long-gone Dutch coastal village in Brooklyn that she created for her husband from an old family photograph. It's part of an ode to New York, flanked by a photograph of a busy Times Square and an eye-catching rendition of the Manhattan skyline painted by Fred Mannarino of Spring Hill.

"I'm a romantic at heart," Mannarino said, explaining how he melded the experiences of two very different places — Manhattan and Miami — into one painting. The retired commercial artist grew up in Brooklyn but spent years traveling in the Navy during the Korean War. He drew upon a memory of a long-ago evening spent watching the moon rise over Miami from an aircraft carrier moored offshore. Two years ago he decided to recapture that mood on canvas by painting Manhattan. "I just wanted to give a feeling for the city at dusk, at twilight, where the light is just starting to flicker on the water," he said.

New York City with a tropical twist — as seen through the artist's eyes.

Now journey on.

. If you go

On and Off the Beaten Path

What: An exhibit of travel-inspired artwork by various local artists

When: Through Jan. 26 noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

Where: Progress Energy Art Gallery, 6231 Grand Blvd., New Port Richey. For information call (727) 848-6500 or visit

Travel-inspired art shown at Progress Energy Art Gallery 01/10/13 [Last modified: Thursday, January 10, 2013 1:54pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. 'Battle of the Sexes' is a fine time capsule comedy, and not really about the tennis


    In 1973, tennis champion Billie Jean King joined a two-ring circus with hustler Bobby Riggs, billed as a Battle of the Sexes amid the women's liberation movement. Fifty million Americans watched the pop spectacle on TV.

    Emma Stone and Steve Carell in the film "Battle of the Sexes." [Fox Searchlight Pictures.]
  2. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Sept. 26


    University Lecture Series: Jackie Cruz: In part of USF's Hispanic Heritage Month activities, actress Jackie Cruz (Orange is the New Black) presents "Cruzing Through Adversity" in which she offers lessons on resilience, determination and turning life's challenges into opportunities and a better outlook. 8 …

    Jackie Cruz in a scene from Netflix's "Orange is the New Black" Season 2. Photo credit: Jessica Miglio for Netflix.
  3. Restaurant review: Mortar & Pestle in Seminole Heights should focus on mom-and-pop pharmacy vibe

    Food & Dining

    By Laura Reiley

    Times Food Critic


    Sometimes, the more time you have with a project, the more complicated it gets. I started hearing about Mortar & Pestle in Seminole Heights about 18 months ago. It was the vision of Ujwal Patel, a pharmacist;

    Mortar & Pestle opened in Seminole Heights in Tampa in August. [MONICA HERNDON   |   Times]
  4. Snap Judgment's Glynn Washington on growing up in a 'cult' and how to tell a good story


    Glynn Washington spent much of his last visit to Tampa preparing his soul for the impending apocalypse. He was assured it was coming any day.

    Glynn Washington, the creator and host of NPR's "Snap Judgment," will bring his live show to the Tampa Theatre on Sept. 29. 
Photo courtesy Snap Judgment
  5. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of Sept. 25-Oct. 1


    MegaCon Tampa: The multi-genre convention brings a lineup of celebrity guests and comic book creators to the Tampa Convention Center Friday-Sunday, including icon Stan Lee, William Shatner, above, Kevin Smith and Gaten Matarazzo and Caleb McLaughlin from Stranger Things. Shop hundreds of vendors selling …

    Courtesy Adultswim