1. Visual Arts

Notions of visibility at CAM; Akiko Kotani's crocheted waterfall and four shows at DFAC

See how artists interpret political invisibility at USF's CAM, which includes the erection and dismantling of a wall. Travel informs Akiko Kotani's work and a varied mix of shows open in Dunedin.
Courtesy of the Dunedin Fine Art Center
Jack Ellis’ large scale watercolors will be on display at the Dunedin Fine Art Center
Courtesy of the Dunedin Fine Art Center Jack Ellis’ large scale watercolors will be on display at the Dunedin Fine Art Center
Published Jan. 9, 2019


USF's Contemporary Art Museum will open another thought-provoking, conversation-starting exhibition on Friday. "The Visible Turn: Contemporary Artists Confront Political Invisibility" addresses the current disenfranchisement of people and ideas through four major works, emphasis on major. Jorge Tacla has painted a monumental, 26-foot "portrait" of the Syrian city Homs in ruins. Karolina Sobecka addresses climate change by reconstructing historical clouds. Tavares Strachan's installation, 130,000 Years, takes on the concept of invisibility with an 18-channel video work and a 2,000 page Encyclopedia of Invisibility. And Bosco Sodi's Muro, a wall of clay bricks made by Mexican migrants, will be erected and then dismantled by museum guests. Beyond the exhibition's political aspects of the topic of invisibility is Marcel Duchamp's belief that making art is making the invisible visible. Before the opening reception from 7-9 p.m., an artist conversation between Tacla and curator-at-large Christian Viveros-Fauné takes place from 6-7. On Jan. 24, Sodi will erect his wall with a public performance from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., followed by its dismantling by the public from 3-8 p.m. A reception with remarks happens from 6-8. All events are free, but it costs $5 to park. 3821 Holly Drive, Tampa.


Akiko Kotani is a Gulfport-based artist often working in fiber arts, but with very much her own aesthetic. Whether hand-stitched "drawings" on paper, incredible weavings or ambitious installation pieces, Kotani mainly uses a serene black-and-white color palette and a minimalist style. That is, if you can call 20-foot-long installation pieces minimal. "The Waterfalls of Milford Valley," on display at HCC's Ybor City Campus Art Gallery, is more than 20 feet of crocheted plastic, inspired by a location in New Zealand. Kotani has traveled extensively, which informs her work in the sense that she likes to make tangible the impressions that places make on her. The installation cascades just as a waterfall does and pools on the ground. An opening reception happens Thursday from 4:30-7:30 p.m., with a gallery talk at 6:15. The installation remains on display through Jan. 31. Free. 2204 N 15th St., Tampa. (813) 253-7674.


The Dunedin Fine Art Center opens its winter shows Friday. They have a great mix of work.

"Jack Ellis" showcases the local artist's large-scale, incredibly intricate watercolors. On display through Feb. 24.

"Laura Waller: Rockland, Tampa, NYC" features the artist's paintings of working waterfronts and urban landscapes. Through March 1.

"Electromagnetic Narratives: The Saint Helices Series" are David Frye's paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures that explore what lies beyond Earth's atmosphere. Through March 1.

"One Day Tampa Bay" is a juried selection of photographs all taken on the same day in 2018. Through March 1.

An artist's talk happens from 6-7 p.m. Friday, followed by an opening reception until 9. 1143 Michigan Blvd. $5, free for members. (727) 298-3322.


  1. Pablo Picasso's scene design for Pulcinella is part of the "Art of the Stage: Picasso to Hockney" exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, which will open on Jan. 25. [Courtesy of Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg]
    ‘Art of the Stage’ opens at the Museum of Fine Arts and the Tampa Museum of Art opens ‘White Gold,’ plus Art Festival Beth-El returns.
  2. Photographer Griff Davis captured the first meeting of Vice President Richard Nixon and Martin Luther King, Jr. and their wives, Patricia Nixon and Coretta Scott King, on Independence Day in Accra, Ghana on March 7, 1957. [Courtesy of Griffith J. Davis Photographs & Archives]
    A famed photographer captured Martin Luther King Jr. and Nixon in a conversation that was incendiary at the time.
  3. Roberto Gomez, of Puerto Rico, dressed as Darth Vader, attends the world premiere of "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker" on Dec. 16, 2019, in Los Angeles. [CHRIS PIZZELLO  |  Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP]
    The massive fandom was built on the strength of a universe that continues to expand beyond the movie theater.
  4. A photograph by Anastasia Samoylova from the "FloodZone" series, on view at USF Contemporary Art Museum in Tampa through March 7. [Courtesy of USF Contemporary Art Museum]
    Plus, check out site-specific installations from the Morean Center for Clay.
  5. Demetri Martin will perform at Tampa Theatre on Jan. 18. [Courtesy of the Tampa Theatre]
    'A Midsummer Night’s Dream,’ ‘The Screwtape Letters’ and ambitious Florida Orchestra collaborations round out the list.
  6. Ai Weiwei's "Zodiac (2018) Lego" is on display through Feb. 9 at the Ringling Museum. [Courtesy of the Ringling]
    Ai Weiwei’s ‘ Zodiac (2018) Lego’ is the big draw, but four other exhibitions each hold their own.
  7. Janna Doughty's "Friends" is included in "Please Stand By," which will open on Jan. 10 at Mize Gallery in St. Petersburg. [Courtesy of Chad Mize]
    Plus, a quartet of new openings and an artist’s talk with contemporary Chinese artist Sun Xun.
  8. A crowd watches Tibetan Buddhist monks from India's Drepung Gomang Monastery dissolve their sand mandala during the Sacred Art Tour at Florida CraftArt in St. Petersburg in 2018. [LUIS SANTANA  |  Times (2018)]
    Plus, ‘Halloween in January’ features work by the Peach Moon and there’s an outdoor photography exhibit in Sarasota.
  9. Audio of the artist reciting a poem plays while visitors explore the Yayoi Kusama: Love is Calling exhibition in the Tampa Museum of Art on September 26, 2018. [Times 2018]
    With new museums, world class exhibitions, arts districts and an abundance of murals, Tampa Bay has grown into an arts destination.
  10. Helen Hardin's "Mimbres Kokopelli" is part of the "Spirit Lines: Helen Hardin Etchings" exhibit at the James Museum in St. Petersburg. [Courtesy of the James Museum]
    Plus, St. Petersburg gets a politically-charged ceramic exhibition and dystopian sculptures invade Ybor City.