From Ponte Vedra to Flagler Beach ...... must see Art venues
The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach
The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach serves as the hub of the community, offering exhibits of local, regional and national artists in a variety of media, hosting art events and numerous art education classes, lectures, and workshops.
It has an extensive number of adult art classes and workshops led by accomplished artists in a variety of mediums, such as watercolors, ceramics, and oil and acrylic paintings. They are offered at the beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.
The Cultural Center also has a wide-ranging amount of children’s art classes, workshops, home school programs, and camps to stimulate awareness, independence, observation, communication, courage, and self-esteem. Classes start for children as young as 2-years-old and extend up to programs for teens.
During the summer, more than 30 children’s camps and workshops are offered, ranging from puppetry, dance, and culinary to sculpture, theatre, photography, mixed media, glass work, culinary and even rock band.
The Cultural Center hosts 8 to 10 annual exhibits of professional artists work in its galleries with opening receptions for each of those events. The galleries are free and open to the community during weekday business hours. The art displays highlight emerging and established local and regional artists and features national artists twice a year.
In addition to the art gallery, the Cultural Center provides studio facilities for art, dance, music and voice instruction classes. It also offers special programs for isolated seniors and children with special needs. Overall, it provides programs for 8,000 persons annually.
In serving as the community cultural hub, the center helps support local artists by hosting various activities, such as a “yard” sale featuring artists who want to sell their art at value prices.
The center is overseen by Executive Director Dick Williams and a Board of Directors. It has 25 contract artists and many patrons and volunteers. As a non-profit, the Cultural Center hosts numerous fundraising events with a focus on the arts and memberships are available.
The center is at 50 Executive Way in Ponte Vedra Beach and is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. More information can be obtained at www.ccpvb.org or by calling 904.280.0614.
ST. AUGUSTINE ART ASSOCIATION
The St. Augustine Art Association in the Old Town quarter of the Historic District has been at the heart of St. Augustine’s art scene since 1924. The art gallery serves as the community's cultural hub and is a gathering place for workshops, lectures, children's programs, concerts and special events.
In addition to offering walking tours, concerts and films, the association sponsors the popular First Friday Art Walks, the Fall Art & Craft Festival and has visiting and permanent art collections.
The First Friday Art Walks occurs the first Friday of every month from 5-9 p.m. There is a trolley that can take visitors to the 15 art venues in the downtown historic area and many of the sidewalk cafes remain open. The Art Walk event has earned it a People’s Choice Award from the St. Augustine Record.
There is also a walking tour that features 10 historic sites in the Old Town quarter that illustrate the footsteps of St. Augustine’s past. The tour includes the sites of a former Spanish military hospital on Aviles Street – the oldest mapped street in the United States, several churches and homes and original stone walls made of coquina, a coarse limestone unique to the area and another wall of coquina and tabby, a mixture of plaster and oyster shell.
The association’s annual Arts Festival draws 15,000 visitors for two days the Saturday and Sunday after Thanksgiving and features national artists, fine arts, craftsman, historical groups and musical entertainment. The event features more than 150 artists from around the United States.
The gallery features a permanent collection of a dedicated group of professional and amateur artists who from 1930-1950 helped form the art association and transform St. Augustine into a thriving winter art colony that attracted hundreds of American artists. The collection, known as the “Lost Colony” artists, includes the works of E.B. Warren, Walter Cole, Tod Lindenmuth, William L’Engle, Emmett Fritz and others.
The works in the "Lost Colony" have been recognized as making an important contribution to American regional art. The story of St. Augustine's art colony is largely forgotten and this online gallery of selected works in the permanent collection offers an opportunity to connect with the artists and discover unique and diverse aesthetics from years gone by.
The gallery also features evidence of Sir Francis Drake's Raid on the town and how he burned it down in 1586. After Drake torched the town, the Spanish rebuilt the town and its population doubled. The permanent exhibit features 16th century artifacts that were excavated directly under a new addition to the art association in the 1990’s. The display includes Native American and Spanish pottery, such as a bowl, pitcher and building materials.
The St. Augustine Art Association boasts a permanent art collection of more than 150 pieces. In addition, it displays a new exhibit/themed exhibit every month. The majority of the art is local or regional, with the exception of the annual Nature & Wildlife Art Exhibit that occurs every August and features national artists.
The gallery is overseen by Diane Bradley, who serves President of the Board of Directors, Elyse Brady, Administrator, as well as numerous volunteer curators and docents.
The gallery can be found at 22 Marine St. in St. Augustine and is open Tues. through Sat. from 2-4 p.m. and Sunday ,2-5 p.m. Admission is free. It has occasional workshops at other hours as well, check their website www.staaa.org for those programs. 904.824.2310.
Art LaMay Studio
Bird aficionados will appreciate the extensive collection of watercolor art at the Art LaMay Studio in the Hammock near Palm Coast. LaMay has an appreciation and understanding of nature and is one of the most popular waterfowl artists in the United States. His paintings and prints are seen all over the nation and the world. The gallery collection is a bird lover’s delight featuring the art of great blue herons, roseate spoonbills, snowy egrets, bluebirds, hummingbirds, tufted titmice, osprey and many more. There are limited-edition lithograph prints and original watercolor and giclée prints.
“For as long as I can remember, I have always had a special fascination with nature,” LaMay writes on his website. “To know that I have captured the subject of the scene as it really is in its natural setting is true encouragement.”
Over the past 38 years, he has designed artwork for organizations such as Anheuser-Busch, Ducks Unlimited, the National Rifle Association, Friends of the National Rifle Association, National Wild Turkey Federation, National Wildlife and the Audubon Society. LaMay has designed stamps, cards, calendars, medallions and posters for all major shows and charitable organizations. He is a frequent participant in major city, state and regional wildlife expeditions.
Tucked away in Flagler County’s Hammock community, those driving by seeing a unique sight: Monumental and life-sized bronze and wooden sculptures that draw in the curious to the Baliker Gallery. The sculptures and furniture made by Paul Baliker have an environmental theme, featuring marine life, birds, animals and man to reflect the balance of humans with nature. Each of his sculptures makes a statement about the symbiotic relationship between the two and raises environmental consciousness.
The gallery also features art from his partner, Cynthia Spiriti, who creates bonze nude sculptures, and his mother Joan Baliker, who specializes in bronze spiritual creations. Several other artists are on display as well, such as Tripp Harrison.
Baliker said he focuses on the environment because “With the way the world s today, every artist ought to be doing environmental art. That’s what we should all be doing.”
The gallery also includes his workshop, where large pieces of wood – mostly driftwood and cedar – are stored, along with other art supplies. Baliker’s sculptures can be seen in numerous public and corporate locations, such as the Daytona Beach International Airport, the Gaylord Palms Resort and the Orange County Convention Center.
The gallery is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sat.-Sun. and by appointment. It is just south of Washington Oaks State Park at 5928 N. Ocean Shore Blvd (State Road A1A). For more information, go to www.paulbaliker.com or call 386.446.0069.
A1A Scenic & Historic Coastal Byway, Friends of A1A and major A1A art venues.
UPCOMING and CURRENT EVENTS
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For your convenience, Scenic A1A, with the financial assistance of VISIT FLORIDA, has compiled an extensive list of galleries and public art along the 72-mile byway. Galleries, addresses and anything else you may want to know can be found here:
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