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Art Snax: Writers and Writing Programs, Gasparilla festivals, arts events on local menu

It’s time to take your wordy skills to the next level with the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Conference and Bookfair coming to town from March 7-10 that draws an international crowd, with more than enough off-site events and parties to keep your schedule packed tight.
 
Since the University of Tampa’s Creative Writing Low Residency MFA program is sponsoring this year’s conference, as part of their offsite readings/outreach they will be hosting their Premier Reading Authors Patricia Smith and Brock Clarke on Mar. 8 from 6-7:30 p.m.at the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery. It should be an incredibly special night,  mostly due to the fact Smith just won the prestigious Kingsley Tufts Poetry Prize of $100,000 for her volume of work “Incendiary Art” (largest prize in the world for a single piece of poetry).
 
“It’s insane, it’s one of the biggest awards in the world that’s given for a single piece of poetry,'' says Erica Dawson, PhD Director of the Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing and Associate Professor of English and Writing. "Brock also has a new collection of stories that will be coming out next week so both will be presenting new works for the public.”
  
Smith’s book "Incendiary Art'' encompasses discussions of racial attitudes, self-delusion, and underpinnings of the #BlackLivesMatter movement, while Clarke’s short story collection The Price of a Haircut provides 11 stories of individuals dealing with racism, societal expectations, or marriage problems.
 
Smith and Clarke were selected due to their ties to the program: Clarke is a professor at UT and Smith was a guest artist with the writing program. Regardless, the talk will be inspirational for outsiders as well as students -- whose goals might be one day to be the next Kingsley Tufts winner.
 
“For our program, what we’re trying to do is get authors of all kind to become the writer they’ve always dreamed of being. We have an incredibly diverse program from those who might be 22 and just finished undergrad, to people who are 60 and finally following their passion,” Dawson says.
 
There will be a reception beforehand for the authors held at the Vaughn Student Center Courtyard at UT from 4-6 p.m. as a festive “Meet the Author” before the reading.
 
Other upcoming art events:
  •  On March 1, art will cross boundaries in an interdisciplinary panel discussion revolving around art, pop culture, and race issues at Gallery 3 @ HCC. Led by Princess Smith (currently showing work there), artist/journalist Dalia Colon, and James Martin, instructor of Political Science at HCC, lively discussion will be paired with food, drinks, and live music. Reception is from 5-8 p.m., with the panel starting at 6 p.m.
  • In case you missed last month’s ArtSnax, here's a friendly reminder that the Gasparilla Festival of the Arts is headed right for Curtis Hixon Park March 3-4. In addition to these daytime festivities, galaRE: presented by the Oxford Exchange and the Gasparilla Festival of the Arts on March 3 at the Tampa Museum of Art is an event for those who, firstly, don’t want the party to end, but also want to get a sort of behind-the-scenes experience with the award-winning artworks and artists as well as the juror. Make sure to grab your tickets now.
  • In an additional reading hosted by UT and Volt Books during the AWP Conference, they will be presenting “Cover Stories: A Reading” with Writers Jeff Parker, Terese Svoboda, Derek Nikitas, and Jane Dykema at the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery on March 8 from 2:30-4 p.m.(before the opening reception at the Vaughn Student Center for Patricia Smith and Brock Clarke). Using classic stories to start, each writer has reinterpreted it in their own voice for a unique spin on a familiar tale.
  • As the sun beats down harder this time of the year, so will the beats during the Gasparilla Music Festival on March 10-11 in downtown Tampa. With a great line-up of soul, electronic, hip-hop, rock, and everything in between. Here’s two recommendations for ya: Get your tickets early, and stock up on SPF 100.
  • If you’re not into the music fest, you could plan on checking out the Apollo Beach Manatee Festival of the Arts & Music also held on March 10-11 at E.G. Simmons Regional Park.
  • All kids need a little more art in their lives, and they can get it during Camp SpARTan: Animals of Florida, which provides spring break art classes for Hillsborough County Schools Elementary ESE Students from March 12-16. Hosted by VSA Florida and the UT Art Therapy Department, the cost is only $50 for a full week of activities at the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery.
  • While not associated with Gasparilla, GASP! packs its own heat. Hosted by Creative Loafing Tampa and the Tampa Museum of Art, this performance-based event will be abounding with acrobatics, theatrics, dance, cabaret, and music. On March 16, prepare for a night that will potentially overload the senses.
  • Besides the beer, there is much more to be celebrated on St. Patrick’s Day. Like getting to know Irish culture through food, games, dance, and live music during the Tampa Mayor’s River O’Green Fest at Curtis Hixon Park on March 17. As you may have guessed: The river will be quite green and perfect for some great photos along the Riverwalk, or--if you’re up for it--during the inaugural River O’Green Gallop 2-mile run.
  • With all of the art events surrounding everything “Gasparilla,” it is truly establishing itself as a Spring cultural bomb that blooms every year--and the Gasparilla International Film Festival (GIFF) is no exception to the mass of events. From March 20-25, GIFF will be partnering with the Tampa Bay Jewish Film Festival for 6-day event full of screenings, industry panels, and parties across various venues, so it’s best to check out their website for the full program guide.
  • Notably recording every toilet, meal, and other banal detail of his life in pictures to send to the F.B.I. to make all of his private life public, Hasan Elahi is quite a controversial artist -- which means he’ll make a great visiting artist lecture at USF. Dealing with issues of surveillance, citizenship, migration, and borders, he will be speaking on March 20 from 4-5 p.m. 
  • People tend to think a Highwayman’s depiction of a Florida sunset is fake or overly imaginative with its vibrant pinks and harsh oranges, but those who know Florida truly understand. Join Dr. Mallory O’Connor as she discusses Florida-inspired art through the ages, and how that essence of our state is captured in
  • “Strangers in a Strange Land: Florida’s History through Art” at the Sulfur Springs Museum and Heritage Center on March 25.


  • The USF MFA Graduation Exhibition is just around the corner, and students will use every second they have between now and then to prepare. Titled “Buried Alone,” you can check out the works of Samir Cabrera, Gloria Ceren, William Douglas, Benjamin Galaday, Nestor Caparros Martin, Zakriya Rabani, and Kim Turner-Smith on March 30 from 7-9 p.m. at the Contemporary Art Museum. The show will run though May 5 for those who can’t make it to the opening. Coinciding with the this event is USF’s 20th Annual Arthouse, combining a juried student exhibition at the Carolyn M. Wilson Gallery with a general open house of the art studios on campus. There’s a lot going on at USF this night, and worth clearing your calendar to participate. Find out more by visiting the USF Arts Calendar.

Air filter created by USF researchers among top inventions

A specially designed air filter that zaps particles and pollutants indoors, making it easier for asthma sufferers and others to breathe clean air makes TIME magazine's list of top inventions for 2017.

The filter, designed at USF's Clean Energy Research Center, retails for close to $900.

Read the complete story.
 

Key North Tampa stakeholders pledge major investment in University Area

Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, the University of South Florida, Florida Hospital, Busch Gardens and University Mall are among key community stakeholders pledging to invest big bucks in the local neighborhoods of North Tampa.

The idea is to market the area as an Innovation Place where research and development can help companies grow and create higher-paying jobs while improving neighborhood amenities.

Read the complete story.
 

Water Street Tampa project starts coming out of the ground

Construction work has begun on a new University of South Florida medical school as part of the Water Street Tampa urban design project on downtown Tampa's waterfront.

The USF Health building project is the first in a series that will include shops, office space, a hotel and apartments.

Read the complete story.
 

Giant Florida watermelon makes a comeback thanks to Lakeland grower, Tampa chef

The Florida Favorite, once Florida's official watermelon, largely disappeared around World War I when it fell out of favor due to not being pest-hardy enough. But with the help of local bees, Lakeland Farmer Will Crum, 33, has rehybridized it by cross-pollinating the Georgia Rattlesnake and Bradford watermelons.

Tampa Chef Greg Baker and wife-business partner Michelle Baker plan to serve The Florida Favorite at their Seminole Heights restaurant Fodder and Shine starting this summer.

Read the complete story.


  

 

On The Ground in Wimauma: Enterprising Latinas trains childcare providers

One the biggest needs in Wimauma -- kindergarten readiness -- is being addressed by Enterprising Latinas efforts to train and license childcare providers.

The goal is to increase the number of licensed daycare homes that can provide quality childcare so more children can prepare for and succeed in school.

To read more about Enterprising Latinas, follow these links: English and Spanish.

Fracking in Florida? UF scientists dig deep to uncover potential

What would be the effect on Florida's environment if fracking becomes widespread?

Two researchers from the University of Florida -- a geophysicist and a geologist -- explain what they think could happen.

Read the complete story.

Will hops do for Florida what grapes do for California?

Researchers at the University of Florida are busy developing a form of hops that could thrive in Florida's warm climate as the next cash crop for agriculture.

Hops are a key ingredient in beer-making, one of the fastest-growing industries in Florida.

Read the complete story.
 

Young inventors win top prizes in USF innovation competition

A garden growing out of recyclable coffee cups, a seeing eye T-shirt, a dissolving spoon that turns into the ingredients for a sauce -- all those and more were among the winners at the USF Young Innovators competition on Feb. 11.

Students in grades K-8 are invited to compete in the annual event for cash prizes. More than 700 entries were submitted.

Read the complete story
 

USF abuzz about new grocery store coming to campus

The Florida Board of Governors approves a plan for Publix to build a grocery store on the Tampa campus of the University of South Florida.

The student neighborhood facility would provide walkable access for faculty, students and staff to buy fresh produce and groceries without ever leaving campus. 

Read the complete story.
 

The Atlantic video story: A coral reef revival

David Vaughan works on the Florida Reef Tract, the third-largest coral reef in the world and a vastly important ecosystem for sustaining underwater life. He and a team of scientists are working to combat the crisis in the world’s coral reefs -- that is, that human beings have lost 25 to 40 percent of the world’s corals in recent decades due largely to seawater temperature rise and continued acidification of the ocean. 

Vaughan has developed a technique called “microfragmenting” that allows corals to grow more than 25 times faster than normal, which could rapidly restore the dwindling population of healthy coral reefs. The Atlantic went inside the Mote Tropical Research Laboratory in Summerland Key, Florida, where Vaughan is the executive director, to uncover how the process works and understand how much hope there is to reverse the damage caused by humans.

See the complete video story

Today's Times: 25 most influential business leaders in Tampa Bay area

Jim 'Hondo' Geurts, Judy Genshaft, Bill Edwards, Joe Lopano are expected to be the most influential of 25 top business leaders in the Tampa Bay region in 2016, according to a list compiled by the Tampa Bay Times.

Many of the names on the list are familiar on the local scene but others are carving out new space within their own unique spheres of influence.

Read the complete story.


 

Tampa researcher preserves donor retinas for transplants to restore eyesight

Researchers at the Lions Eye Institute in Tampa have discovered a new method for preserving retinas from human organ donors that may help make it possible to restore sight in people coping with some types of blindness.

A patent is pending for the preservation technique. 

Read the complete story
 

Taipei team wins Hult prize; UT team among finalists

Team Tembo, the University of Tampa team of students and graduates, put Tampa and the University of Tampa on the global map of intellectual capital Sept. 26 when it finished among the top 5 in the Clinton Global Initiative's $1M Hult Prize.

A group from National Chengchi in Taipei won for Impct.co aims to revolutionize the way children in slums around the world receive education and healthcare.

Read the complete story.
 

Creation of Innovation District in north Tampa moves forward

Plans for the creation of an Innovation District that ties together the collective economic impact of key community partners in north Tampa surrounding the University of South Florida is moving toward reality with a cash infusion of $2 million from Hillsborough County.

Partners would include the cities of Tampa and Temple Terrace as well as local hospitals and top employers such as Busch Gardens.

Read the complete story.
 
273 Higher Education Articles | Page: | Show All
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