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St Augustine Art Association Starts the Year With A WOW!

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Black and White and more at the St Augustine Art Association. photo 2016

It was an opening to be proud of, as the St Augustine Art Association opened the 2016 year with their signature “Black & White and Shades of Gray” titled art show. Over 100 pieces of black and white art surrounded the main gallery, including those in attendance for the opening, decked out in what else….black and white.

Art pieces including: photography, paintings, pen and ink as well as sculptures, pottery and drawings were on display representing all shades of black and white. “This was an overwhelming task to judge and shift through all of the entries,” stated Ken Barrett, the judge for this exhibit. “The time, craft and vision of the artists is well represented.”

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The Jean Wagner Troemel Award for best of show award went to Ken Neighbors for his piece “Black Bird.” photo 2016

The Jean Wagner Troemel Award for Best of Show award went to Ken Neighbors for his piece “Black Bird.” This intricate pen and ink symbolizes the beauty and strength of the Native American. The first place award went to Pauline Dickson for her cut paper piece titled “Arctic Wolf II.” Dickson’s talent cannot be missed, as this three dimension piece jumps out of the frame, with the feeling of the arctic cold surrounding the observer. The amount of time put into “Arctic Wolf II” is evident and this piece is frankly amazing!

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UNF student Diana Shepherd stands in front of her pieces. photo 2016

As one enters the main gallery, they are greeted by four magnificent metal sculptures which represent the four elements: earth, air, water and sun. Created by UNF student, Diana Shepherd, the artist statement says, “In my environmental series I pay homage to earth (Gaia, the earth goddess), energy (Ra, the sun god), air and water by creating symbols within the form of the ankh, which symbolizes the breath of life and regeneration. It is important to me to honor these life-giving forces.” With this environmental series, the sculptures are breathtaking and makes one think about, once again, the damage that is happening to our earthly home. Shepherd’s other pieces are also on display for all to enjoy and marvel.

With additional sculptures by Alycia Bren in the Faith and Joseph Tiberio South Gallery, one is overtaken with the talent and inspiration of these two students. Bren’s show is entitled “Antoillier,” (meaning: ant-before, oeil-eye and ier-a suffix indicating an action or state of being). The art pieces are influenced from the shapes of the natural tools that animals use. The wood, animal horns and welded pieces are exquisite and most definitely unique.

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Theodore Morris art work include portraits of Florida’s original inhabitants the Timucuan Indian . photo: 2016

Once again the STAAA brings the history and art of St Augustine together in a unique and important way with the exhibit in the Marguerita Phillips North Gallery. A  collection of 16th century artifacts, excavated at the St Augustine Art Association grounds in 2014 are also on display. The artifacts prove the interaction between the natives and the European elite. A 16th century flagellation star is one of the prominent pieces on display, which is proof of the religious rituals performed by the ancient Europeans in their new home.

Also featured in the North Gallery is an exhibition of oil paintings by artist Theodore Morris depicting portraits of Florida’s original inhabitants, the Timucuan Indian . With the lifelike features, one can almost look into the eyes of these portraits and be transported to another time and space. The Lisa O’Neil painting, “ Restless Hearts” continues to be on display and the combination of paintings show both the Native Americans as well as the first immigrants, the Spaniards, together as they would have looked in all their glory in the 1500’s. According to some historians, when the Spanish came ashore there were close to 200,000 Timucua. Two hundred years later, there were less than 100 natives left. Bringing the whole exhibit together is a poem about the spirit of the Timucuan Indian written by Leny Katenekker.

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This months winners. photo: 2016

This grouping of work is something to be admired. The quality of these exhibits has the community waiting in anticipation for what is yet to come in 2016 at the St Augustine Art Association. A visit to the St Augustine Art Association gallery is a must. Located just over the Bridge of Lions on Marine St, it is open to the public Tuesday through Sunday. Visit www.staaa.org to learn more.

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