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Explore Florida’s ‘Sad Tropics’ at Tempus Projects, make your own Kusama-esque sculpture and swim through water inspired art

Photo by Cristina Molina and Jonathan Traviesa Sad Tropics is a collaborative exhibition by Cristina Molina and Jonathan Traviesa.
Maggie Duffy, Times Staff Writer
Wednesday 12 September 2018 12.49

Troubled Paradise: Sad Tropics

As Floridians know, thereís another world beyond the picture-perfect postcard images of our state and other seemingly idyllic tropical places. Florida natives and New Orleans-based artists Cristina Molina and Jonathan Traviesa know that too, and explore the notion in their collaborative project, Sad Tropics, opening at Tempus Projects on Saturday. The pair got the idea to dig into the psychological landscape of paradise, the tropics and the mythology of Florida from their travels through South Florida. Through photo-murals, videos and a site-specific installation, Molina and Traviesa show all that Florida is, from the paradise where people flock daily to its embarrassing reputation with the rest of the country. An opening reception happens from 7-9 p.m., with an artist talk at 7:15. 4636 N Florida Ave., Tampa. tempus-projects.com.

In addition to Tempus Projects, Sad Tropics will also be exhibited at the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College from Sept. 21-Nov. 2. 800 E Palmetto St., Lakeland.

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DIY: Soft Sculpture Night Lights

Everyoneís getting excited about the upcoming exhibition "Yayoi Kusama: Love Is Calling," which will transform a gallery at the Tampa Museum of Art into one of the acclaimed artistís Infinity Rooms, opening Sept. 28. In advance of that, the museumís I Make Mondays workshop will feature Kusama-inspired soft-sculpture night lights. Led by instructor Libbi Ponce, the workshop happens 6-9 p.m. Monday at the Roberta M. Golding Art Studio at the Glazer Family JCC, 522 N Howard Ave., Tampa. $35, $30 for members, includes all materials and a pass to the museum. Register online at tampamuseum.org or call (813) 421-3361.

Dive In: Liquid

With the arrival of Red Tide on our local beaches, bodies of water are on our minds. The artists of St. Pete Artworks are certainly thinking about water, and translating those thoughts into works in painting, photography, collage, sculpture, mixed media and even jewelry. "Liquid" opens Saturday with a reception from 5-9 p.m. at 2412 Central Ave.

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