Beyond Words: Celebrating Books as Art is a juried exhibition showcasing fine handcrafted work by 36 artists from Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee. The diversity of contemporary books as art is highlighted by the 75 pieces on exhibit at Florida CraftArt.
“This exhibition celebrates the book as art through a varied collection of inventive works. that challenge preconceptions of what a book is and can be,” says Cindy Bartosek the exhibit curator. “For an artist, ‘book’ can be amedium of artistic expression. It is a space for experimenting with innovative combinations of images, text, and formats to address topics ranging from politics to poetry, from whimsy to deeply personal narratives that explore and communicate important themes and visual ideas in a very individual way, limited only by the imagination of the maker.”
“Each book represents a personal story, a reflection of cultural heritage or international sensibilities,” says Bartosek. There are thought-provoking pieces and conversation starters around social justice and state of the world issues. Some are pieces that stretch the imagination or relate personal joys and sorrow; others remind us of the beauty and wonder of the world around us and its peril. Others take the book structure beyond everyday expectations, challenging our preconceptions of what a book is and can be.”
Beyond Words: Celebrating Books as Art, June 10 – July 30, 2022, is made possible by a sponsorship from Elizabeth Reilinger, City of St. Petersburg, and Florida Department of State Division of Arts and Culture. Docent tours are available upon request.
Showing in the exhibit are artists Kathy Arrowood Oates, Kingsport, Tenn., Robert Barancik, St. Petersburg, Fla., Barbara Beyhl, St. Petersburg, Fla., Kim Borowy, Tequesta, Fla., Harry Bower, Dunedin, Fla., Karen Brown, Tampa, Fla., Bonnie Bruner, Lake Worth, Fla., Lisa Co, Gainesville, Fla., June Colburn, Largo, Fla., Mary Correa, Lakeland, Fla., Neverne Covington, St. Petersburg, Fla., Liliana Crespi, Port St. Lucie, Fla., Rima Day, Thompsons Station, Tenn., Christine Di Staola, Clearwater, Fla., Lauren Dykes, Tampa, Fla., Helen Ensign, East Point, Ga., Melissa Fair and Emily Hashagen, Tampa, Fla., Judy Flescher, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., Eric Folsom, Gulfport, Fla., Kristina Gintautiene, Holiday, Fla., Carla Golembe, Delray Beach, Fla., Mary Grieco, St. Petersburg, Fla., Kally Harvard, St. Petersburg, Fla., Andrea Huffman, Sunrise, Fla., Kianga Jinaki, Riviera Beach, Fla., Jack King, Tampa, Fla., Ryan Lutz, Cape Coral, Fla., Elizabeth Neily, Gulfport, Fla., Polly Perkins, St. Petersburg, Fla., Rose Marie Prins, St. Petersburg, Fla., Stephen Sidelinger, Venice, Fla., Rebecca Skelton, St. Petersburg, Fla., Shelly Steck-Reale, St. Petersburg, Fla., Jacob Wan, Orlando, Fla., and Kathy Wood, Port Charlotte, Fla.
Florida CraftArt is located at 501 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg and is open Monday through Saturday from10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. For more information, visit www.FloridaCraftArt.org or call (727) 821-7391. Florida CraftArt is a nonprofit organization founded in 1951 and headquartered in St. Petersburg. Its mission is to grow the statewide creative economy by engaging the community and advancing Florida’s fine craft artists and their work. Fine craft art is presented in its 2,500-square-foot Florida Artist Gallery and curated exhibitions are featured in its adjacent exhibition gallery. Florida CraftArt is the only statewide organization offering artists a platform to show and sell their work.
Mark your calendar (Zoom links available on FloridaCraftArt.org or on facebook.com.)
Friday, June 10, 5:30 – 7:00 p.m.: Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony
Sunday, June 12, 2 p.m.: Artists’ talk: Barbara Beyhl, Mary Correa, Neverne Covington, Christine Di Staola, Melissa Fair, Eric Folsom, Emily Hashagen, Kristine Gintautiene, and Kally Harvard.
Saturday, June 25, 2 p.m. Roy Peter Clark talk: “Please judge my book by its cover.” How do collaborations between writers and visual artists create works that readers keep for a lifetime?
Tuesday, June 28, 5:30 p.m.: Author Deb Carson, multimedia presentation based on her book, “Becoming FLO, A Mostly True Story”
Saturday, July 30, 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.: “One Sheet Wonders: Folded Books from One Sheet of Paper,” Workshop with curator Cindy Bartosek.
Saturday, July 30, 4 p.m.: Artists’ talk: Karen Brown, Lauren Dykes, Mary Grieco, Andrea Huffman, Kianga Jinaki, Elizabeth Neily, Polly Perkins, and Rebecca Skelton; and closing reception.