Monday, July 27, 2015

Arts for Act: Joe LeMay, William Garcia and ACT Members Group Ex...

Arts for Act: Joe LeMay, William Garcia and ACT Members Group Ex...: Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, August 7, 2015 from 6 to 10 pm for the opening re...

Joe LeMay, William Garcia and ACT Members Group Exhibit

Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, August 7, 2015 from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception and art walk for August 2015.  This month, ACT Gallery will feature Artist and Illustrator Joe LeMay in the main gallery, William Garcia in the office gallery and 8 ACT Member Artists and Volunteers in the white gallery room.   

Joe LeMay was born and raised in the Midwest, but made the move down to Southwest Florida in 1998. In 2004, he went to study art in Savannah, Georgia where he graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design with a degree in Illustration.  After getting his B.F.A., he returned to Fort Myers and began working in freelance illustration.  His freelance work has included children’s book illustration, logo design, poster design and comic strip illustration. Although his gallery work draws upon his background in illustration it branches out into several different styles and techniques, a luxury not often afforded the free-lance illustrator.  It is this artistic freedom, which continues to inspire him to experiment and to enjoy the process of making art.  However, it may manifest itself.  Joe is currently living and working out of Cape Coral, FL.  This is the 3rd year; Joe has been the main gallery feature artist.  His art is both whimsical and playful yet he shows he is a master illustrator and painter.    

William Garcia was born in Havana, Cuba in 1971.  He is a Cuban Painter and Sculptor.  He studied in in San Alejandro, a higher institute of plastic art.  His inspiration is in his daily life, William translates what he sees in images, it may take months for that design to accomplish what his muse wants to tell on the canvas and want he wants to express.  Focus, is a big aide to Garcia in creating his works.  He never loses his inspiration to create.  He creates and enjoys every moment and go on forever indulging in his passion.   Garcia has had several expositions in Havana Cuba, at the Museum of Decorative Arts.  From 2005 to 2009, he worked in Europe especially in Bilbao Spain, and France.  He has a permanent exposition in the gallery of Mr. Lozano Arrue Ramon in Bilbao Spain.  
Garcia has lived in Miami less than two years.  Garcia will be showing a collection of works in oil that show a very humanistic, sensitive and feminine appeal.
In the white gallery this month, ACT Gallery will feature eight Artist Volunteers, who run the gallery on a daily basis.  These member artists are Larry Garland, Becky Sandbek, Linda Benson, Vic Delnore, Susan Mills, Flo Collins, Michael Pohlman and Kim Kraft-Beckler.  Each will have four pieces of art in their discipline, which will include collage, oil and acrylic painting, gourd art, mixed media, illustrations, sketches and watercolors.  Come view these creative artworks of the ACT member Artist/Volunteer exhibit and support ACT Gallery.  

These exhibits continue through Monday, August 31, 2015.   

Monday, May 11, 2015

June 5th Artists Schulz, Vernier-Pesce and Blue Crayonz Fundraiser at ACT Gallery

Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, June 5, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception and art walk for our June featured artists: “Hidden Drawings by Renee Schulz in the main gallery. Showing off the main gallery: Artist, Chris Vernier-Pesce, and Blue Crayonz Fundraiser to benefit Children of Autism.  These exhibits continue through June 29, 2015.  

In the Main Gallery – Renee Schulz
"Hidden Drawings" by Renee Schulz

Renee has been an active artist for over 10 years, with experiences ranging from employment as a caricature artist for a local art shop to earning a BFA in Drawing and Painting from SUNY New Paltz. With an expressive fine art background, she has attained an exceptional eye for color, composition, and sketching.  Post graduation, Renee moved to New York City where she built upon her scholastic expertise with practice in photography, graphic design, fashion design and editorial illustration. Renee currently lives in Fort Myers, Florida where she continues to network with a variety of creative and innovative industry professionals.  She continues to broaden her perspective on the arts, mix different forms, and create new styles for unique works of art.

In the White Gallery – New Works by Chris Vernier-Pesce
Good Old Girl by Chris Vernier-Pesce

Chris Vernier-Pesce is a naturally gifted Artist.  Born and raised in Michigan, she created her first piece in 1971; worked the outdoor art circuit, and then, left her passion behind to pursue a career as an organization and employee development consultant.  Now, retired, and happily living in Southwest Florida, Chris has resumed her painting with fervor.  She finds inspiration in a wide variety of subjects and continues to challenge herself with new subject matter and new techniques in acrylic and in watercolor.  All of her works reflect a consistent positive, uplifting expression of life.  “If my work puts a smile on your face, then my goal as an artist has been achieved,” says Chris.

 Off the Main Gallery – Blue Crayonz Fundraiser
To be sold to support Blue Crayonz

" Blue Crayonz Inc is a non profit organization dedicated to helping individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder receive community services. Local artists and students have donated art to help fund  a Sensory Room for a local school.   Help us provide these kids with a safe and therapeutic space by buying the donated art from this fundraiser.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Arts for Act: Steve Pennisi, Megan Davis & Kevin Cote at The Art...

Arts for Act: Steve Pennisi, Megan Davis & Kevin Cote at The Art...: Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, May 1, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception ...

Steve Pennisi, Megan Davis & Kevin Cote at The Arts for ACT Gallery - May 1

Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, May 1, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception and art walk for our May featured artists: Steve Pennisi in the main gallery “Both Sides of the Paint”. Showing off the main gallery: Linocuts, Woodcuts, and Collographs Print Artist, Megan Davis, and Abstract Artist, Kevin Cote.  
In the Main Gallery – Steve Pennisi

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, resided in coastal Maine for 30 years, Steve Pennisi now lives in Southwest Florida. 

University of Michigan, 1975-1979
University of Michigan, School of Art 1977-1979

Work History
Founded Pennisi & Company (Advertising & Design)
Currently, Steve is working as full time artist.

Artist Statement: My practice grew out of my desire to "own something" as an artist. In my earlier work, which included realism, abstract and abstract expressionism, I was frustrated knowing where the painting would end up. The rest of the process was just a matter of moving to the inevitable conclusion. I wanted to find a way to stay open and be continually surprised and engaged. I discovered my technique one day when the corner of dry paint on my waxed paper disposable palette peeled up. When I peeled it off I was amazed at what I found on the hidden side of the paint. It revealed underlying gestural patterns previously hidden from the artist. It had a life and spontaneity that I had never seen before…something that felt human but freed of any doubt or hesitation. I found that I could paint on this clear cellophane typically used for gift wrapping, and when I glued it to the canvas the film would peel off, essentially creating printing plates. Having been a commercial printer for many years made this approach second nature. I could lay a piece of clear film on the wet paint and capture that image too. This ability to use "both sides of the paint" gave me a freedom and expanded palette that continues to excite me with possibilities everyday. The paint vacillates between pure physical paint - Jackson Pollock like splashes and splatters - to pure photographic Ansel Adams-like halftone effects that can only happen chemically, to create these paintings. All the effects are created by how I pour and pull the paint. I use a myriad of tools such as squeegees, metal strips, cans of air, water and alcohol to affect the hidden side of the paint. Initially I have limited myself to Black and White initially as I learn to control the elements and possibilities. The plastic nature enables a certain distancing from the preserved, disembodied mark, allowing me to contemplate and build the painting without losing any of the initial energy. Much of the process is just finding animals in the clouds and Jesus in the toast, but ultimately taps into my unconscious narratives. I stop when the result reaches a complexity that I could not have planned in advance but somehow communicates something important to me. Having lived by the ocean in Maine for 30 years, the ocean theme runs through many of my works. The painting is a collaboration with the material properties of the acrylic paints, my tools and unconscious. It requires me to be an editor in order to control each piece even if I could not predict the effect of each piece of paint beforehand. Prior to discovering this technique, I always knew where a piece would end up. Now I must trust, push and cajole to end up with more of a poetic approximation.    
Video on my technique: Painting with “both sides of the paint”

In the White Gallery – Abstract Works by Kevin Côté

Kevin is originally from Buffalo, New York and is currently a student at Florida Southwestern State College studying Architectural Drafting.  Color and Technique come together to create windows into the inner workings of Kevin Cote’s beliefs and feelings on art, which has been an experiment from the beginning and over the last year is starting to take shape into something he feel happy with and wants to share.  Kevin works show control of perspective and the viewer finds these works beautiful, complex and aesthetically and physiologically pleasing. 
 Off the Main Gallery – Megan Davis

Megan Davis is a native to Naples, Florida. She has both an art and a psychology degree, and would like to eventually become an art therapist. Davis, now 25, is currently teaching art and pursuing her Professional Educator's Certificate.   Artist statement:     My body of work consists of various types of prints and paintings. As an individual schooled both in art and psychology, I find the two practices walk hand in hand, especially in surrealism. How an individual's brain perceives art is based on a series of processes in which the image is torn down to its basic components, such as color and angles, for recognition of its individual parts in a bottom-up approach, and a series processes that try to match the overall experience to a previous experience in a top-down approach. This means that when someone looks at a piece of art, they see not only what the artist has created, but brought their own life experiences to flavor their perception of the art. I create art with this concept in mind, trying to leave each piece with an ambiguous sense, and allowing for further exploration by the viewer to draw their own conclusion. I consider the viewers' interpretation of the art as equally correct as my intentions in the work. 

     I create both prints and paintings. My prints consist of linocuts, woodcuts, and collographs, all printed with Akua ink. Some of the pieces are printed on a press, allowing for a crisp, clean look, while others, the woodcuts in particular, are printed by hand, allowing for the natural textures of the paper and woodgrain to play a bigger part in the piece. My painting are done with acrylic, and while I love the excitement of brush strokes and flowing color, you'll notice this body of work is primarily made up of prints due to my love of the zen-like marrying of technical work and spontaneity printmaking.

These exhibits continue through June 1, 2015. 

Monday, March 23, 2015

April 2015 - Art Quilters Unlimited Group, Tom Nagata and Pat Cleveland

Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, April 03, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception and art walk for our April featured artists: Group Exhibit by The Art Quilters Unlimited in the main gallery. Showing off the main gallery: Painter, Tom Nagata, and in the White Gallery, “Transitions” Pat Cleveland – a legally blind artist.  These exhibits continue through April 27, 2015.  

In the Main Gallery – Art Quilters Unlimited Group Exhibit
Art Quilters Unlimited AQU TAKING A BITE OUT OF FT MYERS with "Slice Quilts"

Art Quilters Unlimited exhibit, "Cityscapes - A Slice of Ft. Myers" for the month of April will delight visitors to Arts for Act gallery in downtown Ft. Myers.  AQU's last show was described by their exibit judge, Alicia Schmidt as " ..a complex kaleidoscope of techniques, styles and imagery. WOW! What can happen with fiber, fabric and thread! I have always respected the artistry of this group – and they have delighted!  The Art Quilters Unlimited works “unexpected” and “unique”.  

Art Quilters are creating special 15" x 35" slice quilts of Ft. Myers scenes for this exhibit along with other size art quilts and many small quilted items for purchase.  AQU is a group of very talented Fiber Artists working with cloth and quilting techniques to create extraordinary wall art. Quilters meet every other month starting in January at the Alliance for the Arts.  They welcome anyone interested in creating textiles, learning and sharing.  Workshops and "Play-Days" by local and national art quilters are offered almost every month.  Excitement and enthusiasm are through the roof at every get-together!

In the White Gallery – Pat Cleveland

“Transitions”by Cape Coral artist, Pat Cleveland, is the first showing of Cleveland’s newest paintings since she developed macular degeneration 3 years ago and now is considered legally blind. The artist considers the change in vision not as a challenge but as an opportunity for creative growth. Instead of her previous quite detailed work she is using a more impressionistic or abstract approach with strong colors in her palette.  There will be paintings from previous years showing her style of work prior to the vision changes as well. All of the paintings are rendered in oil on canvas and include various subjects of landscapes, portraits, animals, florals, and still life.

A graduate of Traphagen School of Design, New York, N. Y., Cleveland worked as an interior designer for Bloomingdales. Originally from New Jersey, she moved to cape Coral in 1975 and was employed by Robb and Stucky.  After retirement she became a member of local art leagues, showing her work in group and solo shows winning awards and notices. In later years her paintings were represented by art galleries in Ft. Myers, Sanibel, Naples, Matlacha, and Lakeland, Fl. Her work is in the collections of celebrities such as Lily Tomlin, the actress, Russian Ice Dance Olympic Gold Medalists, local and national collecors.  For the last 25 years Cleveland has donated paintings to the annual Arts for ACT Auction. In 2013 she was one of 6 featured artists of ACT.

 Off the Main Gallery – Tom Nagata

Thomas Hiromu Nagata was born of Japanese-American parents in 1947 in Honolulu, Hawaii.  He graduated wit a BFA in Graphic Design from Ohio University.  Tom began his career in the field of education and moved to Fort Myers to teach in the Lee County School District.  Tom’s original works began in acrylic, his limited edition silk-screen pieces ranged from four to twenty-one colors.  His works soon blossomed into 30” X 40” gallery wrapped canvases that tease the eye into following the painting around its edges.  The subjects reflect his youth in Hawaii, Orchids, Koi and more.  Tom’s choice of color and balance create movement on his canvas.  Paying close attention to detail, he laboriously applies my layers of pigments that are watered to create different tones and hues.  The process is very time-consuming, often taking two to three months per original.  Come see these stunning works that focus on tropical subjects and Hawaii.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Arts for Act: March 2015 at ACT Gallery ArtPoems, The Everharts ...

Arts for Act: March 2015 at ACT Gallery ArtPoems, The Everharts ...: Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, March 6, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening recept...

March 2015 at ACT Gallery ArtPoems, The Everharts and Mary Michelle Scott

Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, March 6, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception and art walk for our March featured artists: Group Exhibit by ArtPoems in the main gallery. Showing off the main gallery: Photographer, Mary Michelle Scott, and The Everhart’s Beth and Bill, “A Small Vacation” a fresh new look at vintage photography.  These exhibits continue through March 30, 2015. 

Donna Quixote and Her Sidekick by Kellen Beck Mills 
In the Main Gallery – ArtPoems Group Exhibit
ArtPoems, a creative collaboration of artists and poets, celebrates its ninth season as a cultural exhibit /event with a month long gallery show at Art for ACTS Gallery.  22 poems and 22 art works will be on exhibit.  During the opening, several poets will read their work.  This year, eleven artists and eleven poets collaborated and inspired each other to create new art and new poetry. Paired earlier in the season, the artists and poets exchanged poetry and art. Each artist created new artwork inspired by a poem and each poet wrote a new poem inspired by the artwork. In total 22 new creations resulted. Visual arts and spoken word art enthusiasts, this exhibit is a must-see!

In the White Gallery – The Everharts-Beth and Bill
A Small Vacation – An Installation of Found Snapshots

Vintage Found Photo for the Installation
Beth and Bill Everhart’s collaborative exhibition, titled A Small Vacation, was originally presented at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center in Staten Island, New York. At the time, they had been collecting found snapshots for a number of years and were interested in using them in some way in an art installation. The fact that it had been a bitterly cold winter that year in New York may have drawn them to images of people enjoying themselves in the sunshine and frolicking on the beach.  At some point they realized that they could select certain snapshots so that they linked together in an unbroken horizon line of water. It became the impetus for the show and a way for them to visually recreate a much needed small vacation of their own.

The artists first met when they were graduate students at Hunter College in New York City and both received their Masters of Fine Arts degrees from Hunter. Bill and Beth married in 1991, and have resided in Fort Myers, Florida for the past ten years. Beth’s photography has been widely exhibited in New York, as well as Southwest Florida, and internationally. Bill is currently working on a book proposal concerning the influence of the Kennedy assassination on themes found in American pop music. This will be their first collaborative exhibit at the Arts for Act Gallery.

 Off the Main Gallery – Mary Michelle Scott

Mary Michelle Scott has lived in SW Florida for the last twenty years. She moved here to accept a job as a Radiation Therapist treating cancer patients. This has been her primary career since 1986, with photography, digital/ conceptual art, and writing being a very passionate hobby. The hobby grew to a second career when the youngest of her three sons began school at Savannah College of Art and Design and she realized that dreams really could come true watching him pursue his dream. Her family and friends strongly supported her new goals in life as she began to live her own dream.
Untitled by Mary Michelle Scott
She is known for being an Army brat most of her life before twenty, then a wife, Mama Scott to three sons, a daughter-in-law and many “adopted” children, care giver to her much loved patients, artist, dreamer and most importantly a believer of the Fiery Tails that were inspired by the ‘Grimm’ tales of our childhood that shaped her creative dreams, writing, and images. She created Fiery Tail Imagery to showcase her work and to allow others to enjoy her artwork. Her childhood in West Germany greatly influenced her work, being surrounded by an immense history and vast culture of many different genres of art styles. 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Arts for Act: Jerry McGreens, Stephen Heymann and Art by Kids wi...

Arts for Act: Jerry McGreens, Stephen Heymann and Art by Kids wi...: Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, February 6, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening recep...

Jerry McGreens, Stephen Heymann and Art by Kids with Cancer at ACT Gallery for February

Join Arts for ACT Gallery, located at 2265 First Street in downtown Fort Myers on Friday, February 6, from 6 to 10 pm for the opening reception and art walk for our February featured artists: Pop-Surrealist, Jerry McGreens in the main gallery. Showing off the main gallery: Painter, Stephen Heymann combines nature and abstraction for a fresh new look and the Art by Kids with Cancer Fundraising Project.  This exhibit continues through March 2, 2015. 
In the Main Gallery – Jerry McGreens
Jerry McGreens began his art career after high school. He took on an apprenticeship to tattoo, while attending some art classes on campus at UNLV. After his apprenticeship was over, he began tattooing full time in his home city of Las Vegas. Ten years later, he moved to Florida to continue his career.  Jerry always dabbled in painting, but work had kept him too busy.  After spending an additional ten years tattooing and recreating someone else's ideas, he felt the need to express his own through painting full time.
Jerry’s art consists of a dark blend of cute and creepy that invites the viewer to move into a world where these creatures have their own agendas. These eccentric souls explore their odd worlds and guide us through what is their reality.  The world around him, his dreams, and other artists that he comes in contact with musically, lyrically, and artistically inspires him. Funny things that may occur in his daily life, ridiculous things, that humans do is also a big inspiration.

Jerry states, “What makes my world go round are: My wife, our Boston Terriers, self sustainable home farming, wrenching on, and restoring vintage import motorcycles and of PAINT!”

In the White Gallery – The Art by Kids with Cancer
“The Art by Kids with Cancer exhibit” is produced, drawn and painted by the children at The Pediatric Oncology/Hematology program at the Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida.   The program raises awareness in the general community as to the importance of the arts in healing and the challenges faced by local families of children diagnosed with cancer.
The Young Artists Awards, a not-for-profit organization serving area children, mats and frames and then showcases, sells, and auctions selected pieces of the children’s artwork.  Trained volunteers will be available to talk about the artwork and program during the opening. More information can be found at  The program will also be accepting donations of art supplies during the opening on February 6.  Small canvases, acrylic paints, brushes, and frames are especially needed.  

 Off the Main Gallery – Stephen Heymann

Stephen Heymann is a new resident of Fort Myers from Jacksonville, Florida.  His inspiration is derived from his varied personal experiences outdoors, from crewing sailboats and working with the Florida Park Service to spending three months in the wilderness and hiking 1,200 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail, Stephen accumulated a large volume of visual references to portray. By studying animals, plants and insects closely, he witnessed endless complexity in both color and form.  He believes there is vast intelligence and beauty in nature and strives to convey that through his artwork.  By combining realism and abstraction in an ever-evolving process, each of his paintings will typically influence the next. A small blotch of paint in a previous piece may be the main theme in his next endeavor. This process of diving deeper and deeper into his work somewhat resembles an abstract fractal. A never ending and constantly evolving landscape that he and the viewer may explore. It is his hope that his work will encourage people to look closer at their true surroundings and find both inspiration and connectivity in the natural world.