If you’ve been to the Mirror Maze in Pier Park, you’ve surely noticed the gigantic mural on their walls. This was one of Andy’s first big commissions. He painted it in October 2008, long before being a professional working artist was on his radar. (I’d say that painting this mural was what really motivated him to pursue being a full-time artist, although his first official introduction to the public was at an art festival in March 2010.)
Andy’s mural at the Mirror Maze in Pier Park is 12 feet tall and 65 feet wide. It’s loosely based on Pier Park itself, featuring coastal architecture, palm trees, and the nearby beach. His signature can be found beside a palm tree by the front door.
Next time you visit Pier Park, stop by Mirror Maze and check it out!
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As part of October’s National Arts and Humanities Month and in support of Americans for the Arts, Perry County Council of the Arts (PCCA) organized, hosted, and facilitated several “Creative Conversations” during a community fair, via social media, and within a coalition meeting of nonprofit arts professionals.
A 30-minute drive from our state capital in Pennsylvania, nestled near mountains and within a river valley, our home base of Newport, PA, can seem remote. Truly, with its beautifully preserved architectural detail, supportive community, and natural beauty, some locals prefer its remote reputation. We are located close to the fifth wealthiest county in our state (ours is ranked 25th). Our lived mission is to make our community a better place to live through the arts, and much of our programming is free or low cost, and intended for local children and families to enjoy.
In our Creative Conversations, we first asked our PCCA member artists, “Why should art exist?” They were generou..
Earlier this month, we had the opportunity to speak with Abel Lopez, outgoing Chair of the Board of Directors at Americans for the Arts. As Chair since 2013, Abel has been an instrumental part of the growth of Americans for the Arts, particularly in sustaining leadership, developing goals as part of the organization’s most recent Strategic Plan, and spearheading the Statement on Cultural Equity.
In addition to his leadership with Americans for the Arts, Abel is also involved in the creative arts community as the Associate Producing Director of GALA Hispanic Theatre. He has directed productions at GALA, Horizons Theatre, DC Arts Center, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Source Theater, In Series, and other venues in Washington, D.C., and across the United States and the world.
In this interview, Abel talks about his history with Americans for the Arts, his experience as Chair, and his excitement for the future of Americans for the Arts and the nonprofit arts and cultu..
Nearly a year ago, Angela Brazil and Stephen Thorne, two members of Trinity Repertory Company’s resident acting company, met with me, the Community Engagement Coordinator, to talk about A Christmas Carol. Having acted in the show many times, they’d recently signed on to direct the 40th anniversary production, and wanted to use this Rhode Island tradition to amplify our institution’s commitment to community engagement. They dreamed of incorporating different community groups every night, connecting our audiences to work and people they might not otherwise know.
Angela explained, “This is a story about someone who's chosen to isolate himself from his community, at great cost to that community and to himself. In the end, through an act of grace, he chooses to re-enter—as painful and complicated as that decision can be. He decides to come back because being with our community is how we retain our humanity. In our current fractured landscape, the importance of community, of looking at ..
Installation – 100 Days Project at Tutere Gallery, August 2017100 Days Exhibit at Tutere GalleryBefore diving into the 100 days project this year I knew I needed an exhibit at the end of the road to keep me motivated and on track. Nothing like a blank wall to fill at a gallery to inspire me to get to the studio every single day.
So back in May, I approached the owner of Tutere Gallery and asked if she would be interested in participating in the challenge*. Happily she said yes and a group of six artists committed to the project and to holding an exhibit at the gallery after the 100 days were over.
During the opening of the exhibit I gave a short talk about our project. Unfortunately we had the great idea to record it after I was done talking. The main focus of the talk was about the incredible growth we all experience over the 100 days. Both in our art and the confidence and clarity it brought to other areas of our life.
We calculated that our 600 individual artworks represented 1000-1..
portrait by Kyle Paxton | 36×48 inches | Oil on PanelSouth Walton artist Kyle Paxton is currently working on “FACES of SANTA ROSA.” It’s an exhibit featuring between 10 to 20 portraits; sharing the stories of the day-to-day people of Santa Rosa Beach/South Walton. He desires to capture the people who make Santa Rosa Beach what it is today; as a unique place to live, work, and visit. This is part of his mission for culture care; to leave a deposit of work to benefit his community and even those beyond. He desires this show to be one of the most significant exhibits for his local community. It will be his biggest show to date.
In Kyle’s words: “I’ve known Andy as a fellow artist, friend, and surf buddy for the past couple years. Andy is considered one of the most well-known artists in South Walton. I guess it makes sense he received the 2013 South Walton Artist of the Year and Best Local Artist three years in a row. Not only is Andy highly acclaimed in the local arts, but he is a great p..
My business travels take me to one city a week on average. From Des Moines to Miami to Portlands both east and west, the first thing my hosts usually show me is the work of a local artist, whether at the airport or on a stage. When I think back over 2017, I have a clear mental montage of my travels, and it serves as a reminder that art and artists are integrated into everything—from the sights of our cities and communities, to who we are.
Artists are also at the core of what my organization, Americans for the Arts, does. They are deeply integrated into our advocacy and community building efforts. While in recent years actor Kerry Washington testified before Congress on arts funding as a member of the Americans for the Arts’ Artists Committee, as early as the 1960s artists like Harry Belafonte and Ralph Ellison were making a significant difference in the work of Americans for the Arts. Singer-songwriter and arts activist Harry Chapin famously said in a conference keynote address, “Let’s..
The 2018 30A Songwriters Festival will be held January 12th-15th! The ninth annual weekend event will feature over 175 artists performing at multiple venues along 30A in South Walton. Tickets can be purchased here. For those attending, be on the lookout for Andy’s backdrop, shown below. When you find it at one of the 25+ venues, be sure to tag Andy in your social media posts.
Also, there’s still time to bid on Andy’s backdrop from the 2012 festival.
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