Monday, September 22, 2008

Night at the Museum!

It is officially called "Art After Dark" and is a popular monthly event sponsored by the Tampa Art Museum. I got involved with this because of a call to artists to "Sound Effects"; art inspired by music, and my two abstract paintings seemed to fit the category so I sent in my jpgs and entered the show, not really understanding what the gig was all about.

It turned out to be a traveling show that was to be a one night stand at the museum (in its temporary quarters...more about that later), followed by a stint in a gallery in St. Petersburg. A big party followed the museum show in a gallery in Ybor City on Friday night which my friend and co-exhibitor, Mary Ellen Bitner, and I decided to skip as it was scheduled to start at 10pm and end sometime in the wee hours and featured the artwork that didn't make it to the museum show.

My paintings were at the end of the big lobby...a great location until the room was packed with people and no one could see my work. Oh well, no matter, as it was a learning experience, and before the room was packed, and before the DJ cranked up the volume on the audio equipment to ear splitting levels, causing everyone there to shriek at each other to be heard, I had some nice comments on my paintings. Later I just had to smile and nod.

Today I took our paintings to Artpool Gallery in St. Petersburg where, on Saturday night, there will be another ear splitting night of music and schmoozing by the folks who like to be seen at the scene. We have decided to go, perhaps briefly as a couple of old ladies out on the town, dressed appropriately for the suburbs, are about as ridiculous as some of the getups we saw at the museum on Friday night.

While the Tampa Art Museum builds a brand new, state-of-the-art facility downtown, it has moved to temporary quarters in a dingy neighborhood and in a very dingy building, that has a kind of ominous presence that looks like an old school building from the 1920s. It was very encouraging to see that such a place can attract hordes of people who paid $10 to see a very eclectic collection of artwork presented by "Sound Effects" which was curated by photographer Mitzi Gordon, and a really dumb show presented by the museum. Was it the food (sandwiches and cookies), the Starbucks coffee, or the beer and wine, that brought on the hordes?

1 comment:

  1. I'm sure it is the prospect of meeting other personalities as sparkling as yours that draw crowds to any public event.

    Hey, maybe you should change the name of your blog to Get Off My Lawn!

    Really, it's like you decided to do everything you could to come off as old and uptight. If that was your aim, congrats! I'm certainly not above ax grinding, but I'm not used to seeing it done with such pomposity and absence of humor.