September Arts Roundup: USFCAM, Bloom on Franklin, Jobsite, Stageworks, Florida Orchestra and more

Two related exhibitions, "Jesse Murry: Rising” and “Necessary Angels: Jesse Murry & Lisa Yuskavage,” are on display at the University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum through December 3rd. Murry and Yuskavage met while attending Yale School of Art in the 1980s and formed a deep bond and friendship.
Co-curated by Jarrett Earnest and Yuskavage, “Jesse Murry: Rising” serves as an important introduction to the art, poetry and criticism of an exceptional and polymathic American talent. “Rising” brings together paintings from the last five years of Murry's life as well as recordings of influential voices attesting to Murry’s enduring legacy. This work, made while confronting his impending mortality from AIDS-related illness, testifies to Murry's lifelong belief in the capacity of painting to hold the complexity of human meaning, at the meeting of a material fact and a location within the mind.
“Necessary Angels: Jesse Murry & Lisa Yuskavage” is curated by Christian Viveros-Fauné, and organized by USFCAM. Viveros-Fauné describes “Necessary Angels” as a love affair between two seemingly dissimilar people. Unfortunately, one passed away. But the other went on to eventually have a thriving career.
“We wanted to compliment ‘Rising’ with a show that gave it more context,” Viveros-Fauné says. “The context being Lisa’s work, the work that lived, rescues Jesse’s work back to life.”Lisa Yuskavage, "Tit Heaven for Hippies," is part of the "Necessary Angels: Jesse Murry and Lisa Yuskavage" exhibit at USFCAM.

The exhibits run through December 3rd. At 7 p.m. Thursday, September 1, Yuskavage will also give a talk at the USF School of Music Concert Hall (MUS 177).
For more information go to USFCAM exhibits and USFCAM events.
Stageworks Theatre Celebrates 40 Years

Established in 1983, Stageworks Theatre is Tampa's longest-running professional theatre company. This year, Stageworks celebrates its 40th anniversary and a full return to live performances after the COVID pandemic. 

“We are glad to finally have the freedom once again to express ourselves, safely and in person,” Stageworks Board Chair Lauren Brigman says of the upcoming season. “In recent years we recognized a lot to speak about and fight for.”

The 40th season offers a diverse schedule of shows and readings that resonate with passionate expression, provoke thought and entertain.

The season kicks off September 9-25 with “The Color Purple,” based on Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and the Oscar-nominated film, and featuring a fresh, Grammy-winning score of jazz, gospel, ragtime and blues.

For more information and the future schedule go to Stageworks Theatre.

“The Heart of Nature” Ferman Wood Art Collection: UT Scarfone/Hartley Gallery

A new art exhibition at The University of Tampa, “The Heart of Nature,” features 78 works from the Ferman Wood Art Collection. The exhibit includes bowls and novelty woodwork, handmade from both domestic and exotic types of wood, and explores the technique of woodturning and wood media's intersectional role between form and function.

The bowls were crafted by various local and national turners and sculptors. Through wood’s transformation from tree to work of art, layers of meaning are revealed, enhanced or added. One of the bowls in the exhibit was crafted by local wood turner Mort Richter from a tree on the UT campus that had died.

UT President Ron Vaughn says the exhibit is an outstanding testament to the Ferman family’s love of beauty and lifelong learning. 

“Exhibitions like this one adds to UT’s reputation in the fine and performing arts, and solidifies UT’s place as a major cultural contributor,” Vaughn says in a press statement.

"The Heart of Nature" at the University of Tampa's Scarfone/Hartley Gallery features 78 works of art from the Ferman Wood Art Collection. “The Heart of Nature” runs through Saturday, Dec. 10 in the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery on the UT campus. The gallery is located on campus in the Bailey Arts Studios at 310 N. Blvd. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.- 5 p.m., Tuesday-Friday and 1-4 p.m. on Saturdays. There is no charge for admission.  

For more information go to UT Scarfone/Hartley Gallery.

Bloom on Franklin 

Bloom on Franklin is a monthly celebration of arts and entertainment along historic Franklin Street in downtown Tampa. The event’s fall season kicks off September 23rd with live music at four locations along Franklin Street, the Oceanic Market Trading Post, which features shopping with over 40 vendors, live painting in seven  locations, two art openings, yoga and meditation and late-night activities that go on past 11 p.m. 

Also new is a shuttle golf cart service operated by Fun Rides Tampa Golf Cart Tours. This will allow people to catch a golf cart shuttle every 20 minutes at three shuttle stops along Franklin Street to visit other locations activated for the event.

For more information go to Merge Culture.

“Sanctuary” by Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz at Gallery114@HCC Ybor City campus

“Sanctuary,” a solo exhibition by Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz is on display at Hillsborough Community College's Gallery114@HCC Ybor City through October 27th.
Throughout her career, the internationally recognized Raimundi-Ortiz has confronted issues of race, bias, trauma and class in her work, often by embodying strong, alpha-female archetypes ranging from the regal Las Reinas to the street-wise Chuleta.

In “Sanctuary,” new works in sculpture and performance portraits create a space of healing and refuge that blend with themes related to nature, hair culture, social politics and urban futurism. "Sanctuary," a solo exhibition by Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz is on display at Gallery114@HCC Ybor City through October 27th.

A reception is scheduled from 5-8 p.m. Thursday, October 27., with an artist talk beginning at 6 p.m. HCC Art Galleries are free and open to the public. Gallery114@HCC is located on the first floor of the Performing Arts building, HCC Ybor City campus. 

For more information go to Gallery114@HCC Ybor City

The Florida Orchestra

This fall, the Florida Orchestra celebrates its 55th season. On Oct. 7-9, Maestro Francis will debut the Hough Family Foundation Masterworks series with the iconic “Carmina Burana,” kicking off a classical series that includes Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and much more. The Raymond James Pops series includes blockbusters such as Harry Potter vs. Star Wars and the Beatles’ iconic Abbey Road album. 

TFO will perform more than 100 concerts this season in venues throughout Tampa Bay. September performances include Amadeus Live at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg on September 17th and Free Pops in the Park at Vinoy Park in St. Petersburg at 7:30 p.m. on September 24th. At 7:30 p.m. October 2nd, Free Pops in the Park visits River Tower Park in Tampa. 

Single tickets and season tickets are available now. For more information go to Florida Orchestra.

Jobsite Theater kicks off 24th season with crowd-pleasers

Jobsite Theater, the resident theater company at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, kicks off its 24th season with Steve Martin's “Picasso at the Lapin Agile.” 

“We want people excited about coming to the theatre again,” Producing Artistic Director and co-founder David Jenkins. “We have only seen about 35-40% return of the audiences we had pre-pandemic. So we have picked a season of great titles that are also household names to appeal to a greater audience.” 

Jobsite’s aesthetic is often avant-garde, debuting relatively unknown titles that sometimes dance with the macabre. The line-up for this season will still have the theater’s signature style and humor but the content features popular plays that everyone recognizes. 
Everyone knows Steve Martin, whose “Picasso at the Lapin Agile” runs September 14th-October 9th. Other favorites include “Dracula,” “Misery” and “Hamlet.” Also in the mix is “Jobsite Theater’s ALICE,” a brand-new cabaret spectacle based on the writing of Lewis Carroll. 

For more information go to Jobsite Theater.

“From Dust” at the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum

"From Dust,” an exhibit of the works of Haitian artist Patrick Noze is on display at the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum through October 14th. 

“I am always thinking about the wonders of the world from its simplest to its most complex shapes,” Noze says in a statement. “To my eyes, the world is a large canvas. Everything I see, dream, or encounter I use as an inspiration for my work”.

Noze is a third-generation artist. His father, Robert Noze was a renowned sculptor, who studied under his own father, artist Andre Dimanche.
For more information go to Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum.

Calls to Artists

Crab Devil
Crab Devil is requesting proposals for Florida/Tampa-themed murals for their much-anticipated attraction, The Peninsularium. Artists’ murals will be installed on the exteriors of shipping containers that house The Peninsularium attraction. Artists are welcome to feature historical, fabricated, or mythic themes or explore Florida’s extreme environmental, cultural, and political climate.

Send submissions to [email protected] by September 15. 

Emerging Artists Grants 23

Creative Pinellas is accepting applications for its Emerging Artist grant program through September 6th. Selected artists receive a financial award of $2,000 geared toward the production of new work, a professional mentor that helps guide their development as professional artists and an exhibition during the grant period.
For more information go to Creative Pinellas.

Second “heART of Ybor” community art contest

The Ybor City Community Advisory Committee (CAC) is accepting submissions through November 4th for its second “heArt of Ybor” community art contest. Artists should submit one interpretation of what Ybor City means to them and their life in the Tampa area. Category winners for first, second, third place and two CAC Choice Award winners will be announced in late November. The winners will receive gift cards to Ybor City businesses, media exposure and featured social media posts. They will also be spotlighted on the Ybor City Community Redevelopment Agency website.

For more information go to heArt of Ybor.
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Read more articles by Michele Smith.

Michele Smith is a writer based in Tampa since the ’90s. She has a degree in International Business & Fine Art from the University of Tampa and has contributed to numerous start-up ventures in the Tampa Bay area. Her writing is influenced by a local and global perspective. Topics of interest include arts leadership, business development, creativity and innovation and wellness. Michele is also the Executive Director of the nonprofit Tampa Arts Alliance.