The Gathering | Apr. 19, 2013 — Jun. 7, 2013
Full Circle Gallery is pleased to present the fascinating and inventive work of local artist AiSeong. “The Gathering” is a collection of paintings on found objects that portray patron saints with a modern twist. Please join us for the opening reception on April 19, 2013 at 6:00pm.
AiSeong has always been a doodler, painter, and tinkerer. As a multimedia artist, she derives inspiration from the modern satirical “lowbrow” movement and the graffiti-artist-turned-gallery-artist phenomenon. She creates portraits and illustrations inspired by nature and folk art, particularly Latin American nicho. AiSeong currently lives and paints in Fort Walton Beach, FL.
The seed for “The Gathering” was first planted while traversing the southwest on a cross-country tour of the US. It was in the small town of Mesilla, NM, amongst the shops carrying tchotchkes adorned with images of Billy the Kid, Frida Kahlo and Dia de los Muertos skeletons, that AiSeong first took notice of the illustrated saints. Her curiosity sparked, she embarked on a journey to discover what they might look like if portrayed in a more contemporary fashion.
Slow Journey Home | Feb. 8, 2013 — Mar. 23, 2013
Mercedes Rodgers was born with a creative spirit. Her earliest memories are of painting in her mother's garden and digging clay from stream beds to create little sculptures. After earning her bachelor’s degree in Art History from the University of Florida she moved to Troy, New York. There she apprenticed with ceramic artist Victoria Crowell and managed the ceramic studios at the Arts Center of the Capital Region. Now she spends countless hours in her studio with the same passion of her youth, creating works of art with paint and clay.
The question of how we get home has always been of interest to Rodgers and is the inspiration behind A Slow Journey Home. When asked where she is from, Mercedes says “I never know how to answer that question. I am from many places, I was born in Kansas, and moved around a lot in my early years. I have lived in different towns and cities from Belize to New York. I currently live in Fort Walton Beach, FL.” This collection reflects her transient lifestyle and search for a home. It is a pilgrimage of the soul. In many of the pieces Mercedes transforms the snail’s shell into a house, each slightly different than the other. Expressing the individuality of all beings. The houses are a metaphor for the facade people choose to show the outside world. While inside each there is a soft vulnerable being, moving ever so slowly with their ego in tow. In her own words Rodgers says, “The snail represents the slow steady progress of a soul as it travels through life. I was thinking about the ego and the ego’s baggage, what we choose to carry from place to place and what we choose to leave behind in our constant search for a peaceful place to call home.”
Using vibrant colors, spirited forms, and working in two-dimensional and three-dimensional mediums, the soulful snails of A Slow Journey Home are brought to life in a most unique way. Created with a combination of hand-built and wheel thrown techniques, the clay snails are like something that could leap from the pages of a fairytale. The watercolor pieces are painted with a resist technique that allows Mercedes to paint the background first, using a wet on wet wash to produce an atmospheric effect. When that is dry she returns to add the characters. The paintings and sculptures have small details in common that create an extraordinary level of depth that is contrasted with simple backgrounds. The tranquil landscapes will inspire audiences to take their own slow journey home.
Ephemeral Nature | Dec. 14, 2012 — Jan. 19, 2013
Laurel Siwicki & Mercedes Rodgers
“Ephemeral Nature” is the newest collaboration by award winning artists Laurel Siwicki and Mercedes Rodgers. Illustrating the fleeting occurrences in the physical world, Ephemeral Nature captures the essential and organic changes of nature’s existence. It is an exploration of nature in art.
Laurel Siwicki, Niceville, FL Ever moved by nature, Laurel Siwicki uses her inspiration as a vehicle to create symbols through sculpture. Her works in this exhibition stay true to her love of simplicity, bringing often overlooked short-lived beauty to the forefront. Constructed of clay and found wood, Laurel encapsulates momentary glimpses of nature with permanence. Her attention to detail, where she believes the beauty lives, is evident in her works. Look closely at her pieces and you may see shadows cast from the sun. Laurel’s focus throughout Ephemeral is on the “peacefulness” and “chance moments in nature.”
Mercedes Rodgers, Fort Walton Beach, FL Each year Mercedes Rodgers observes the transformation of the seasons. She is often awed by the delicacy and resiliency of the natural world. Using clay and handbuilding techniques, Mercedes fashioned feathers and leaves for Ephemeral. With intentions to visually cement the feelings experienced in the instant when life shifts, Mercedes draws motivation from science. The concept that “energy can neither be created nor destroyed but only changes form” was her mantra while creating this body of work. Centered on that change and reflecting on the process of decay and rebirth without the loss of energy, she refers to her pieces as “a meditation of transition.”
les étoiles no sanpo | September 21st - October 28th, 2012
“les étoiles no sanpo” is the newest body of work by renowned artist Sol Davis. Translated in English as “a walk through the stars” this collection is heavily inspired by "The Little Prince." Davis invites audiences to join him on a visual journey into his dream world.
Currently residing in Mobile, Alabama, multi-media painter Sol Davis has been creating art for more than 17 years. Influenced by comics, anime, and manga, Davis’ style contrasts precise lines and loose colors to create intriguing and whimsical images. Using a process of pencil drawing, wood-burning and washes of color, Davis transforms ordinary scraps into visual masterpieces leaving viewers returning for second and third looks hoping to decode the artist’s intention.
“les étoiles no sanpo” is the first time Davis uses French as his language tool to express the stories behind the pieces. Although French is a new feature for Davis, one happy recurrence with this collection is the promise to have audience members seeking the deeper, individual and collective meanings behind each work of art. At the end of the adventure, it is Davis’ hope that others, just as he, are inspired and forge their own “journey to new places, meet new people, and learn new lessons.”
Surreal Surveillance | July 27th - August 19th, 2012
Local artist Larry Beat started creating art more than 50 years ago, while growing up in Toledo, OH. His twenty year career in the Air Force exposed him to a fantastic array of exotic cultures, from Europe to the Far East. These experiences are reflected throughout Larry’s artwork, and even in his studio’s name; the “Bad Habits Lounge” is named after a GI tavern near Clark Air Base in the Philippines. Larry currently lives in Destin, FL.
Larry works tirelessly to capture the best of what our area has to offer, focusing the imagery through the lens of his unique perspective to create surreal, pop-art inspired prints that never fail to turn people’s heads. The high-contrast and bright colors in Larry’s digitally manipulated images provide a fascinating outlook on the people, places, and wildlife he most admires about the Fort Walton Beach and Destin area. His images grab your attention and oblige you to ask “what am I really seeing here?” When you figure it out, you have to smile, because in catching a glimpse of what Larry Beat sees, you gain a new appreciation for things you might otherwise take for granted.
Thirteen | May 28th - July 8th, 2012
Folk artist Alan Moore has always incorporated “junk” into his artwork. Growing up, Alan watched his mother throw away old shoeboxes, paper towel tubes, and toothpaste boxes. Alan rescued the items and created unique pieces of art. In his teen years, Alan painted on recycled papers and old wood for art classes and personal projects. A couple of decades later, he is still salvaging, chopping, and assembling other peoples’ trash to make his very distinctive treasures.
Some audiences may label Alan’s art “green” for his use of mostly recycled materials. Ask Alan and he'll simply refer to his work as “junk” or “folk” art. Less concerned with the name of his process, Alan continues to have fun creating and watching the smiles on viewers’ faces when their eyes first meet his pieces.
The title of Alan’s collection is in honor of his upcoming thirteenth wedding anniversary. Alan dedicates the exhibit to his wife, Lori, and says of her, “She is the love of my life. Each piece represents a time, a place, or a season we have experienced together, as well as our hopes and dreams for the future.”
Transcending Decay | March 30th - May 13th, 2012
Transcending Decay, encaustic paintings by Denielle Harmon is both elegant and abstract. Her collection soothes with rhythmic patterns and earthy pallet, while challenging us to rethink the meaning of decay.
Looking at the rust prints and embedded elements in the encaustic work the subject may be difficult to discern. The pieces in Transcending Decay ask the viewer to look deeper not only meditating on the image, but on their own ideas of decay and beauty. This collection is about the transformation of good and bad. Harmon says of the subject matter, “The progression of transforming beauty from decomposition is seen in the decay process of rusting. An object is born for a specific purpose and through the weathering of time and exposure to adverse elements, it is altered and therefore transformed. In this new and presumed fragile state elements of beauty evolve by removing the object from its intended use and placing it in a new environment. It evokes elements of beauty, shape, form, texture, earthen colors and patina which have developed through the transformation of its assumed decay.”
Inspired by life's journey, Denielle is “fascinated with the internal landscape of emotions, decisions, goals and plans and where these processes lead us. The manner by which we transform and transition from where we are, where we think we are going, and ultimately where that journey leads us, are often quite a different place than anticipated.”
Choosing to work in encaustic was a very deliberate decision for this body of work she “finds this idea of transitions is echoed in the use of encaustic painting. This method embodies building layers and dimensions with the translucent wax, each subtle, obscuring and transforming the image in the previous layer collectively becoming a new more complete whole.”
Denielle Harmon is an artist currently living in the Northwest Florida area and has studied art at the University of New Orleans and The Art Institute of Chicago. She has been accepted to and won awards in multiple juried shows and festivals. She exhibited in the New Orleans area Arts Evening events, as well as solo exhibitions in the arts community of 30-A in Grayton Beach, Florida.
The Slowest Moving Things: Creatures of Habit | January 13th - March 4th, 2012
“The Slowest Moving Things: Creatures of Habit” is a distinct collection of original artwork created by award winning artist Kendall Marsh. Using familiar objects to convey complex meaning, Kendall's paintings reflect the dichotomy of progress versus meditative appreciation of the now. Her observations of the natural world blend the frustratingly habitual nature of slow-moving invertebrates with the genre of vanitas, themes that imply the transience of youth and the often nebulous designs we have on our future. The juxtaposition of these themes predicates the frozen moments, the reflexivity of a frame in time and the complicated irony of a creature that lives only a few days.
Holiday Anthology | December 3rd - December 24th, 2011
Laurel Siwicki, Heather McCaw, Sol Davis, & Mercedes Rodgers
"Holiday Anthology" highlights award winning artists Laurel Siwicki, Heather Maccaw, Sol Davis, & Mercedes Rodgers. The Full Circle Gallery is pleased to present a distinct collection of original artwork created by some of our most accomplished artists. Working in their respective mediums, each artist created one-of-a kind treasures ideal for you and your loved ones this holiday season. Please join us December 3, 6:00-8:00 pm for our holiday celebration. Live life artfully this year by giving handmade and locally created gifts to family and friends.
Sculptor Laurel Siwicki - Niceville, FL Using naturalistic symbols and portraying movement in space reflecting the passage of time, Siwicki recognizes the effects that just one moment has on an individual. She takes inspiration from her surroundings and often uses birds as vehicles for expressing intrigue into the natural world and time. Of her sculptures, Laurel says, "While specific meaning may develop during the creation process, I never seal a piece into an obvious boundary. Without walls, I invite the audience to explore their own meanings."
Painter Heather McCaw - Navarre, FLMcCaw’s work revolves around small but portentous objects such as toys, souvenirs, and heirlooms. Such artifacts raise immediate personal and cultural associations for many viewers and playing with these traces of meaning are central to the work. The result is a very unique form of realistic still life painting, imbued with remembrance and contemplation and expressed in slightly electric colors. McCaw’s unique approach to the subject unmoors it from simple nostalgia or sentimentalizing of the past to create something new and immediate. Her newest series offers up a “Curio Cabinet” of rare and remarkable treasures including marbles, fishing lures, and antique buttons. These tiny, easily-overlooked objects both remind us of people and things past – Grandma’s button jar or Dad’s tacklebox – while offering intimate and fresh meditations on light, form, and color.
Painter Sol Davis - Mobile, ALMulti-media painter Sol Davis, inspired by Harajuku culture of the Tokyo fashion district contrasts precise lines and loose colors, creating intriguing and whimsical images. Davis' two-dimensional pieces exhibit a depth and detail not seen before. Using a process of wood-burning and oil wash, ordinary scraps are transformed into visual masterpieces filled with such great vibrant detail; new surprises await you at every torched corner.
Potter Mercedes Rodgers - Fort Walton Beach, FLInspired by the curves and textures in the natural world, Rodgers’ newest collection focuses on the spiral and its many forms. Using the ancient etching technique of sgraffito, Mercedes applies a layer of slip on her forms then carves intricate designs of contrasting colors onto the very same surface. Altering traditional ceramic shapes and patterns, Rodgers extracts spirals seen in her everyday adventures and renders their progressive curves into a tree branch, a feather, a star or a wave. According to Mercedes, "The pieces I create have personality and are made to bring joy and beauty to everyday life through their fine details.”
Figüré | September 23rd - November 20th, 2011
Artist Neslihan Celik-George presents her solo show “figüré” available for viewing from September 23 to November 20, 2011 at Full Circle Gallery in Fort Walton Beach, FL. The opening reception is Friday, September 23 at 6:00pm. A collection of paintings and sculptures, “figüré” reflects the artist's view on the dichotomy of seclusion.
Neslihan Celik-George's newest body of work focuses on balance and tension through the female form. Blending imagery of an isolated woman with symbols of discovery, destruction, and nature Celik-George expands on an idea of fantastic solitude.
Painting with acrylic on wood, each of Neslihan's works feature the image of a woman blissfully alone yet trapped in the very aloneness she seems to relish. Each painting includes an object further detailing and cementing the beauty of isolation often challenged by the darkness of loneliness.
Neslihan says of her collection, “I started this series focusing on figure, detail, and texture. In the natural creativity process I found myself discovering details in the symbolism of being alone leading me from one piece to the other.”
Neslihan Celik-George earned a Bachelor's Degree in Education of Fine Arts at the University of Canakkale and is currently perusing her Masters of Arts from the University of Florida. Outside of her studies, Neslihan uses her talent as a painting instructor at Full Circle Gallery and Abrakadoodle.
OBJECT-ion | August 12th - September 18th, 2011
Nationally exhibited artist and Florida panhandle native, Justin Lyons is a self-taught painter known for his mixed-media work. Lyons’ newest body of work, “OBJECT-ion” is a playful commentary on America’s consumer culture.
Using wit, humor and social stereotypes to convey messages, Lyons’ work reflects his personal thoughts and feelings about objects and their use. He contrasts images or text to draw out their multiple meanings. At first glance one may be intrigued in by a familiar childhood image like that of a popsicle or a bunny rabbit. Take a second or third look, and that same piece reveals a dark reality often ignored or simply not seen.
In his own words Lyons says, “I like to draw the viewer in with a childish feel or candy coated look to the work, and once they begin to bite, chew and digest it they see that maybe there's some meat to it as well.”
Lyons’ works in many mediums including wood (sometimes found), acrylic, house paint, spray paint, oil stick, epoxy resin and pencil. His compositions consist of multi-layered paint drippings, pencil scrawling and surface etchings.
Reikan | June 10th - August 7th, 2011
Sol Davis & Mercedes Rodgers
"Reikan" is a visual dialogue between artists Sol Davis and Mercedes Rodgers in a collaborative expression of their individual worlds. The collection created by Davis and Rodgers is innovative and cutting-edge, bringing together the vibrancies of each artist's medium. Using a combination of wood-burning and oil paint, Davis' two-dimensional pieces create a depth and detail that only he can accomplish. Inspired by Davis, the sculptures by Rodgers are a combination of wheel-thrown and hand-built techniques bringing Davis' paintings to life.
Multi-media painter Sol Davis derives inspiration from the Harajuku culture of the fashion district in Tokyo, Japan. His style contrasts precise lines and loose colors, creating intriguing and whimsical images. Using a process of wood-burning and oil wash, Davis transforms ordinary scraps of wood into visual masterpieces that are so full of vibrant detail, you will find new surprises each time you look at them.
As a conceptual artist and potter, Mercedes Rodgers’ work ranges from large scale community-based art pieces to everyday functional pottery. Equally inspired by Japanese influences, Rodgers’ work inherits from the concept of Wabi-Sabi; the perfection of imperfection and beauty in everyday life. “I want to express my sense of wonder about the world and share a feeling of melancholy joy and soulful longing”, said Rodgers. Looking at Rodgers’ sculptures, one is struck by the proportions, elongated dress, and unimaginable poses. Together, these create a tension rivaled by the humor found in the gestures and details.
Each artist has their own visual language in which symbols and images are used to navigate audiences through their respective journeys. This exhibition displays Davis’ and Rodgers’ individual strengths merged into a unified vision. Rodgers uses the image of a bird as a metaphor for one’s self. She sees the symbol of the free flying bird as an expression of the uninhibited and wild self. Contrasted with the caged bird, a symbol of the restrained self, Rodgers blends the imagery of both the free and caged birds in a playful way. Davis’ visual symbolism concentrates on feelings of love and rejection revealing a sort of personal code masked by letters and numbers. The result is “Reikan”, an exhibition that, without losing its simplicity, guarantees to have audiences questioning the deeper, individual and collective meanings behind each piece.
SOS Security Blanket | April 22nd - May 39th, 2011
As a community organizer and Florida resident, artist Mercedes Rodgers has found a way to give a voice to people who are still dealing with the effects of the disastrous Gulf Oil spill. Her SOS Security Blanket is a conceptual quilt made entirely of petroleum-based products. The blanket is a symbolic representation of the naive way in which we have been hiding from the true costs of our dependence on petroleum, much in the way a child would hide under a favorite blanket.
One year after the Deepwater Horizon explosion, Mercedes Rodgers has collected over 300 individual blanket squares created by concerned artists and individuals from around the country. This community art piece is not only visually striking, it is a call for change from many voices. Her mission is to have people from all over the world who have concerns about our dependence on fossil fuels participate by making and contributing their squares to the project. The assembled squares create a visual petition for better energy policies and a more sustainable future. By creating a square, anyone who feels hopeless, vulnerable or angry will be able to use art to express their frustration and be part of a unified call for change. Bringing together all of our angst, fear, and feelings of helplessness into one large project will create a strong visual message and help remind people about the hazards of off-shore drilling and unsustainable energy practices.
Rodgers is inviting anyone who has something to say about the Gulf oil spill (or other man-made disasters) to design a square for the SOS Blanket using old shower curtains, grocery store bags, construction plastic or any other recycled petroleum-based plastic. During the exhibition there will be a workstation set up with materials for people to make squares. Artists working in any medium, from writers, to painters to crafts people, may contribute squares by making them at the reception, or by mailing them to the gallery. See the SOS Security blanket main page for more details.
Passage | February 12th - April 10th, 2011
Photographer Jennifer Diaz presents her solo show “Passage” on February 12 - April 10, 2011. The opening reception is on Saturday, February 12th from 6:00pm-9:00pm. “Passage” features a photo collection reflecting the artist’s view of the simple details in a complex world.
Jennifer Diaz’s exhibition focuses on the passage of time in relation to simple items often overlooked, due to life’s distractions. Her focus on minute details along with the method in which she chooses to frame her subject matter, gives her audience a micro and fragmented view. This leaves viewers wondering and imagining what makes up the rest of the scene. Jennifer’s work also shows us the beauty of change resulting from natural decomposition. Example pieces include: a water droplet falling from an aged faucet and an air conditioner slowly consumed by the progressive growth of petals and vines. The intrigue of Jennifer’s work lies in her perception of mundane and, some might say, unsightly objects. Jennifer says of her work, “I shine a light on natural beauty and detailed complexity that others may not be able to see.”
While Jennifer’s works are derived from her personal experiences of growing up in Miami, caring for her ailing grandfather, and most recently her travels as a member of the United States Air Force, they are also open to individual interpretation.
Shots for a good cause!
Less than a year after enlisting in the Air Force, Jennifer’s grandfather, Beni, passed away. Although challenged with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Beni always laughed and joked as if the debilitating effects of MS did not exist. Not a day goes by where Jennifer isn’t thinking of Beni and his spirit of strength and humor. She continues to remember him through her photography. Every shot taken is an opportunity to help others challenged with MS. In memory of Benigno Q. Diaz, the artist’s profits are donated to the National MS Society, North Florida Chapter.
Pure Illumination | December 10th, 2010 - January 20th, 2011
“Pure Illumination” is an uplifting community art show that focuses on the unique power and beauty of light and illumination. Each contributing artist has created original works that either uses light as a part of the composition or is a personal interpretation of light. The goal of “Pure Illumination” is to elevate and inspire each and every person that experiences it. This exhibit is also ideal for holiday shoppers looking for extraordinary, soulful gifts to give their loved ones this year. On display will be one-of-a kind art pieces that can only be found at the Full Circle Gallery.
The focal point of the show will be delicate porcelain luminaries created by Mercedes Rodgers. These luminaries are carefully hand-thrown, trimmed and thinly carved to reveal the translucent property of the porcelain. Instead of glazing the fired pieces, Rodgers has hand sanded them to a satin finish, which brings out the suede-like quality of the fine porcelain. When candles or small lights are placed inside, the resulting glow accentuates the intricate designs carved into the exteriors of the luminaries. Mercedes says of her pieces, “My intention with these pieces is to create objects that are both functional and sculptural, objects that radiate light and joy.” Please come by and celebrate your holidays with us at the Full Circle Gallery.
...and all that could have been... | October 29th - November 21st, 2010
Local artist, Brandon Pence, announces his first solo art exhibit entitled, "...and all that could have been...". The exhibit will be held at Full Circle Gallery in Fort Walton Beach, FL. from October 29th to November 21st, 2010. There will be an opening reception on October 29th from 6:00pm-9:00pm, with the artist talk at 7:30pm. He will discuss the developed graphic design skills and his experimenting with three-dimensional mediums. Pence hopes to create an experience to get people thinking and questioning.
“I'm very excited about this opportunity. I am pushing myself as an artist to create pieces outside of my comfort zone for this exhibit," says Pence. "This is a collection of never before seen work made exclusively for this exhibit as well as a physical manifestation of my evolution as an artist.” To find out more about this show...
This is Pence's first foray into sculpture and three-dimensional art as a whole. He will be constructing a life-size wooden cross and incorporating a female form comprised entirely of broken glass, crucified to it. Although this may be a sensitive subject to some people, the cross symbolizes a specific meaning to the artist as he hopes to open the minds of his viewers. Pence says, "I want people to think. This exhibit isn't meant to offend; it's meant to invoke thought."
The 25 year old self-taught digital artist has attracted a niche following for his graphically enhanced photographic narratives. He captures portraits in a unique and intense way, posing his subjects against light and dark color contrasts. The eclectic, passionate tones of Pence's art clearly reflect his musical inspirations such as David Bowie, Johnny Rotten and Sascha Konietzko, as well as European artist Neil Duerden.
More About The Artist:
Brandon Pence has been working as a professional in the graphic design field since he was 17 years old, honing his skills at a regional sports publication and then moving on to create the branding for Java Jo'z/Cuppy's Coffee. Currently, he is a graphic designer with Revive Media Services. Pence recently launched a virtual exhibit of his art. Pence also works with clients to create conceptual portraits from existing digital portraits such as graduation or wedding photographs.
Taking Flight, Taking Root | September 4th - October 2nd, 2010
Northwest Florida’s award-winning artist Laurel Siwicki will present her solo show Taking Flight, Taking Root on Saturday, September 4th – October 2nd, 2010 at Full Circle Gallery in Ft. Walton Beach, FL. The opening reception will be September 4th from 6:00pm - 9:00pm with an artist talk at 7:00pm. The show will feature ceramic sculptures that reflect the artist’s introspection into the life journey – how we get there and where we take root.
While Siwicki, a native of Niceville, has been working on developing this show for about a year, she feels her own life journey has been preparing her for it all of her life. While the works are derived from the artist’s personal experiences, they are open to individual interpretation, providing spectators with an opportunity to explore their own thoughts on taking flight and taking root. As such, symbolism plays an integral role in Siwicki’s series and heavily helps her tell her story.
“Since the beginning of time, artists have been using symbols in their art to allow the viewer to infer their own meaning,” Siwicki explains. “I use old and new symbols, all of which incorporate my Northwest Florida roots.”
These symbols include cypress trees, dilapidated skiffs, and native birds. Siwicki’s works also often include parts that look rusted or worn, which help create a sense of the passing of time, highlighting the artist’s belief that journeys take time and that one ought to enjoy them.
“Too often we focus on the being-there, when, if we take a moment, we will realize that the getting-there is sometimes the best part,” Siwicki says.
During her artistic career, Siwicki has experimented with many different mediums but has found that clay is what best gives shapes to her ideas. Most of her artwork reflects a sense of appreciation and observation of the world around her. Using a natural element such as a clay seems only natural for Siwicki’s creations, through which she seeks to break the tradition and perception that clay creates merely functional objects by using it expressively in innovative ways.
Siwicki’s own journey as an artist has led her to many places, but she has recently discovered that the place from where she originally took flight – Northwest Florida – is the place where she now takes root.
In conjunction with her exhibition, Laurel will offer two workshops where she will teach the techniques she uses to create her beautiful works of art. The first workshop will be on Journey Sculpture in which students will explore their own personal journeys and learn how to turn their ideas into a 3 dimensional ceramic sculpture. The second one will be an Angel Sculpture workshop where Laurel will guide students in the process of creating an angelic figure.
SOS: Save Our Shores | August 17th - August 28th, 2010
"SOS : Save Our Shore" is a community exhibit in reaction to the Gulf oil spill. The show will be up from August 17th-August 28th with a closing reception on August 28th from 6:00pm-8:00pm. There will be a silent auction during the reception with all proceeds going to the artists of our community. This will be a great opportunity to pick up some amazing artwork and show your support for our talented community.
The goal of this show is to give artists and viewers a venue to express their different ideas, feelings and issues about the Gulf oil spill. In this way we can learn from each other and work towards a positive solution to this tragedy. Gallery owner Mercedes Rodgers says, “With so many of us affected by this disaster the Full Circle Gallery thought they would try to do something positive the the community”. So far there has been an amazing response to the show with inquires from New York to Brazil with questions about how to submit. This is going to be a dynamic show with a wide variety of mediums, concepts and styles on display.
During this show Mercedes Rodgers will introduce her "Security Blanket" a conceptual quilt made from reused petroleum-based plastics.
Eye Sore | July 10th - August 7th, 2010
"Eye Sore" is a retrospective show of artist Brad Greek's paintings. In this show Greek will exhibit paintings spanning two decades of his career. The reception will begin at 6:00pm on Saturday, and Greek will be giving an artists talk around 7pm. During the reception guests will have a chance to win one of Brad's prints by correctly identifying the artist in his “Mystery in Art History” series.
Brad Greek is an award-winning artist who has been exhibiting in the region for decades. He works in a variety of styles and mediums, and explores many different subjects. “Eye Sore” will be the first ever public exhibit to display Greek's early autobiographical work alongside his current stylized landscapes, giving a powerful insight into his psyche. This unique collection will include the artist's early self -portraits, his Mystery in Art History series, and a few other inner vision pieces that were inspired by his past and life experiences.
Greek says of his style, "I'm inclined to paint with a detailed style of realism, but will venture into a symbolic, surrealistic styles as well. Most artists are known for one certain style or subject matter. I understand the logic behind this common practice in the art world. But I feel that this stereotyping of an artist's creativity limits their potential abilities. I have found it impossible to stay with one style or medium. Bringing a variety of work to the table keeps the mind wondering what I will create next.”
Brad Greek's work may be viewed in many locations around the Florida Panhandle, as well as on his website at: www.bradgreek.com. Brad currently resides in Florida with his wife and four children.
The Great Deluge | May 29th - June 22nd, 2010
Over the past few years, Doria Grace has moved on to look at water as a signifier on a more global scale. Her research has taken her into ancient “deluge” (flood) mythologies, which can be traced back to every culture, from Judeo-Christian to American Indian. Scientists say that those stories originated during the end of the Ice Age, when glaciers across the world began to melt, displacing villages and tribes in their wake. These stories resonate with Doria Grace at this particular point in time due to the melting of our modern-day ice caps. This, her fourth solo show, demands awareness while investigating the theoretical and imagined impact that the melted water from our ice caps would have upon our coast lines and major cities throughout the world. Doria began planning this exhibition long before news of the oil spill hit the Gulf Coast, and it seems sadly appropriate that the reception will take place alongside the community's efforts to save our wildlife and our waters. She hopes that this show will be an arena for community dialogue as well as a place to gather in reverence to the fragility of our planet.
Doria Grace is an artist who has been recreating her personal dream-imagery for over a decade. This exploration intensified in the year 2002 in the city of Montreal, Canada. At that time Doria's displacement from the tropical waters of her home in Florida prompted her to investigate the significance of water's reoccurring imagery in her work. During the 7 years she spent in the northeast surrounded by snow and ice, Doria began digging deep into the dreams and memories of her lifelong engagement with large bodies of water. Doria Grace started by first confronting her emotional body, her childhood self, which had long resided in the Deep South, filled with folklore, mystery and horror. Those first few series of underwater self-portraits pertained to the abjection of the body, the mystical, the fantastical, and the autobiographical. Although her early work and self-portraits sometimes offer a fleeting glimpse of a sinking subject, there is no apparent threat, danger, or urgency. She drifts through a serene, womb-like garden of ephemeral emotion in calm control, yet maintains a subtle vulnerability. For Doria Grace the ancient element of water signifies and embodies all that is hidden behind the veil of consciousness, and in which she explores that which lies beneath the surface.
Astronaut Take Over | April 9th - May 6th, 2010
“The Astronaut Take Over” is a multimedia installation piece by artist E.J. Nieves. This installation will be a combination of painting, sculpture and wonder. The “The Astronaut Take Over” reception will be held at Full Circle Gallery on April 9thth, from 6-9 P.M., with the artist commentary at 7:00pm. The Takeover starts now!
E.J. Nieves is a visionary artist who uses the brush as an instrument of intrigue. Many of his works carry a journal-like feel as they portrait Nieves’ innermost thoughts throughout the surface of the canvas. He couples his words alongside fields of color, shape, line, and symbolism that can be seen in his graffiti-like, loose, and playful style of expressionism. Pollock and Warhol are among his most immediate artistic influences. Traces of pop culture can be seen in his work through journal entries which carry messages that are both politically and religiously charged. Nieves has a passion for dealing with the grave nature of being “stuck” or “trapped” in one type of art. Nieves says of his experiences as an artist “One has to understand change in order to impact.” He is using his brush and canvas to share these ideas and allow other to see how they can have an impact.
“The Astronaut Takeover”, AKA T.A.T., is the depiction of a universe that artist E.J. Nieves frequently visits in his mind. This is a place of controlled chaos, wonder, beautiful colors and an endless dialogue of visionary thought. Ej says “If I was the astronaut, then the canvas would be my space, and my brush my shuttle. If one can live their dreams outside the boundaries of everyone else’s black hole (which is regret, fear, hate, etc.) then you too, are an astronaut. The Takeover starts now…”
Strange Bird | February 5th - March 13th, 2010
“Strange Bird...A Look at Security” is a multimedia, community-oriented exhibit by artist Mercedes Rodgers. This installation will be a combination of sculpture, film, origami, painting and self-exploration. The “Strange Bird” reception & masquerade party will be held at Full Circle Gallery on February 26th, from 6-9 p.m., with the artist commentary at 7:00pm. A reception will follow in which participants may adorn bird masks and dress of their choosing (all birds of the imagination are of course welcomed) and be photographed in the artists’ human-size birdcage.
This show will feature a hand crocheted, over-sized birdcage, nest, collection of paintings and a video made by the artist that illustrates her process throughout this installation. Mercedes says of the show, “This work is about the many meanings of the bird as a symbol: its imagery and the range of ideas it can evoke. Using the bird as a metaphor I am allowing the viewer to look at their free, uninhibited-self in contrast to their tame, socialized-self and see where their cages lie. It is about how we view birds in nature as free and flying; verses how we see them in captivity as caged domesticated pets or property and how those thoughts of freedom and captivity translate into our own lives”.
The artist invites the public to Full Circle Gallery any time between February 5th and March 13th to contribute to the “Thousand Cranes” aspect of the installation. Participants will be asked to ponder what they believe is the real meaning of personal security as they learn to fold and encapsulate their thoughts within their origami cranes. Non-locals are also encouraged to participate in this installation and may email their contributions directly to the artist at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a comment on Full Circle Gallery's Facebook discussion board. The paper cranes will then be placed in the nest and be a part of the show on Feb 26th
The “Strange Bird: A Thousand Cranes Project” will also examine Japanese belief that if a person manages to fold 1000 paper cranes, they will be granted a wish for healing, a good life, a good marriage, or world peace. A thousand paper cranes is a powerful gesture of caring, devotion, and love. During the “Strange Bird: A Thousand Cranes Project”, Mercedes Rogers will to take the wishes, dreams, fears and desires of our community and fold them into 1000 cranes with the hope of bringing security and peace of mind to the collective. If you wish to participate in this project, please answer one or more of the following questions and submit your answer in person or by email. Mercedes will fold all contributions into paper cranes and place them side-by-side in the nest of the installation to be explored together Feb 26th.
- What does the word security mean to you?
- Where does your sense of security stem from?
- What words do you associate with insecurity?
- What decisions have you made to try to bring security into your life?
- Have you ever made a decision with the intention of gaining a greater feeling of security, but later found that the decision actually caged you into a specific lifestyle and hampered your freedom?
- How can your needs for security be a burden?
- Can a person ever be truly free of needs?
- Is it possible to be secure and free at the same time?
Seasonal Inspirations | December 5th, 2009 - January 16th, 2010
Sandra Matasick, Sol Davis, and Mercedes Rodgers
“Seasonal Inspirations” is a unique holiday show featuring three regional artists: jeweler Sandra Matasick, painter Sol Davis and potter Mercedes Rodgers. On display will be one-of-a kind art pieces that can only be found at the Full Circle Gallery. Although each artist works in a different medium, they all share the quality of being influenced by other civilizations and times. This inspires them to create work that is mysterious and rich in cultural significance. This exhibit is ideal for holiday shoppers looking for extraordinary, soulful gifts to give their loved ones this year.
Jeweler Sandra Matasick from Gainesville, FL. works in gold, silver and precious stones. The styles and textures on her jewelery come from her study of Byzantine adornments. She describes her work saying “I use small details to tie my pieces to the past and bring them some mystery.” In conjunction with this show Sandra will offer an intensive weekend workshop on lost wax casting January 16th & 17th at Full Circle Gallery.
Painter Sol Davis from Mobile, AL is a multi-media painter inspired by the colors, forms and textures of Harajuku, a fashion and shopping region in Tokyo which is famous for its fantastic design and playful styles. Sol says he “combines the fashion influences with the use of text to activate the space, while giving the viewer an insight into how the garment relates to reality”. His painting style contrasts precise line and loose color to create images that are intriguing and whimsical. Each painting is full of details that make you return to the piece again and again.
Potter Mercedes Rodgers from Fort Walton Beach, FL is inspired by the curves and textures she sees in the natural world. Her newest collection of functional ware is an abstract take on the flower. She has taken traditional plates and mug forms and pushed them a little - turning the rim of mug into petals, or the flute of a wine glass into a stem. She carves small glimpses of spirals and lines to give each piece depth and variety. Mercedes says “I create unique pottery with personality for people to use when they are celebrating, sharing meals and enjoying life, bringing joy and beauty to every day.” A functional piece of art brightens up the most mundane day!
Tattoo & Street Art Exhibit | November 7th - 23rd, 2009
Mikie Banks, Nate Barnes, Dana Melissa Dixon, Terry Dutra, and Tim Shaefer
Full Circle Gallery is proud to present “Tattoo & Street Art Exhibit” - a group exhibition that will showcase the fine art of regional tattoo artists. The show will be open to the public from Saturday, November 7, through Monday, November 23. The reception for this exhibit will be held at Full Circle Gallery on November 7 from 6:00-9:00 P.M.
The “Tattoo & Street Art Exhibit” will investigate the world of tattoo artists and the complexity of their many art forms. The creativity and skill that an artist demonstrates when creating a quality tattoo on a flexible, three-dimensional surface is often under-appreciated by those outside of the body art community. This exhibit showcases both flash artwork and more traditional pieces created by regional tattoo artists. Their work is sure to challenge your preconceived notions of what may be called “art”.
Tattoo artists are often very versatile, and create more than just ink designs on skin. Artist Terry Dutra says he is “torn between different mediums of oil, acrylic and flesh.” Tim Shaefer claims watercolor as his medium, saying “My biggest influences are Andy Bolin, Shauncey Fury, and Uncle Allan. All of them are also tattoo artists.”
Many tattoo artists' careers take them in different directions from traditional artists. Nate Barnes says, “Some people are meant for college, followed by careers in big buildings. For me, tattooing is my home - rewarding, exciting, constantly inspiring, ever changing.” And artist Coallus (Mikie Banks) started making tattoo flash when he was 15, and started tattooing when he was 20. Like many other narrative artists, his works are based in stories, and things that may have happened, but also built around his dreams. Coallus is known for his “broken star” design, which he says “represents broken dreams and perseverance”. But Coallus believes that one should “never give up on what you believe in, and always keep moving forward.”
We thank Kendall Marsh for her work as guest curator of the show. Please join us in exploring the world of these amazing artists!
Atmospheric Surfaces | October 3rd - 25th, 2009
Ceramic work as subtle and elegant as Susie Bowman's is a rare find indeed. As a potter, Bowman focuses on soda and wood fired functional art. Susie Bowman graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree with a major in sculpture. She worked for the next several years in television as a graphic designer. After taking time off to raise her children, she returned to her passion for 3 dimensional design. Her renewed interest in clay began when she took several classes at the Brookfield Art Center in Connecticut. She soon set up her own studio after moving to Fairhope, Alabama, and she continued to study pottery at the Penland School of Craft.
Bowman's goal is to create sensual, clean, and graceful forms that serve a specific purpose. ”It is important to me for my pottery to have a relationship between form and function, feel good in your hand as well as on your lips, and to give a sense of pleasure when you use it,” she said. Her work combines ancient forms with a fresh, modern approach.
Bowman continuously strives to supplement and enrich her education by participating in workshops worldwide. During a trip to Japan in October of 2008, she studied Japanese aesthetic and worked with Japanese potters to fire work using a Noborigama wood kiln. This experience culminated in an impressive group show in Echizen, Japan. This past spring Bowman studied with Gay Smith at the La Meridiana International School of Ceramics in Tuscany, Italy. Bowman has also been involved in several art festivals and exhibits, including a recent Best In Show win at Fort Walton Beach’s 2009 “Fire and Earth” Coastal Pottery Exposition.
We invite you to meet Susie and talk to her about her work at her reception October 3rd from 6:00-9:00. We hope to see you there!
Seeking Inspiration | August 29th - September 15th, 2009
Student-Teacher Show and Art Demonstrations
“Seeing Inspiration” is a celebration of the Full Circle Gallery's one year anniversary. The show features work created in the studio by both students and instructors during the past year. “As an instructor I have learned so much from our gifted students, and am proud of their work - as well as inspired by it!” said instructor Doria Grace of her experience at the Full Circle Gallery. During the reception, patrons & attendees will get a chance to see instructors demonstrating the painting, drawing, and pottery techniques taught in their classes. Information on the exciting new fall workshops and class lineup will also be available. You will be able to meet with instructors to gain insight into their teaching methods and perspectives, and to talk about which classes might be right for you. Attendees will also get to meet the students, talk with them about the work they have created, and learn about the kinds of experiences they have had in Full Circle Gallery's studio. The event promises to be an exciting exchange of ideas, and we look forward to seeing you there!
Dual Perspectives| July 18th - Aug 19th, 2009
Jean V. Pugh and Philip Anderson
Artists Jean V. Pugh and Philip Anderson share a collaborative exhibition entitled “Dual Perspectives”. This is a combined exhibit of two artists, who originally made acquaintance through the internet, online, eight years ago, due to a mutual interest in art. The duality of this exhibit lies in the fact that the show features two different perspectives on the same subject matter: the figure, the sea, and music. Although the Pugh and Anderson have only met in person on a few occasions in Fort Walton Beach, they are in constant communication with each other, discussing their latest works and working together via “snail” mail on a piece entitled “Street Corner Jam Session”. Both artists have been considered “Outsider Artists” at different points in their lives although Anderson received his Master's of Art in Drawing & Painting in 2004 from C.W. Post of Long Island University, Brookville, Long Island, New York. In addition to Pugh's drawings, she also works in stained glass depicting the figure. Pugh says, “I use Art to create the world that I see and imagine through the un-structured flow of fashion and Jazz Music. The show is both a collaborative exhibition as well as an exploration of each artists own unique voice and promises to be a dynamic display of color and emotion.
Life's A Beach | June 13th - July 11th, 2009
Life’s a Beach Publications publishes a variety of digest-sized magazines that specialize in using local knowledge to enhance the experience of visitors to our area. It periodically sponsors large group exhibitions of local artists who use vibrant color and images of palm trees to portray the playful and whimsical atmosphere of the Emerald Coast in their artwork. The exhibition is also a competition for participating artists. Selected work will appear on an upcoming cover of Life's A Beach magazine - with over 500,000 copies distributed, this is a great opportunity for artists to gain visibility. The artist will also receive a featured editorial and quarter page ad. During the gallery reception the winner will be announced and awarded a ribbon and certificate. The show promises to be a colorful, vibrant display of the Emerald Coast! Our grand prize winner was Brad Greek so look for his article and solo show in the summer of next year. The other two winners were Loretta Menadian and Reba Burrow. Other placing artists were Sean Armbrewster second place, Nancy Jergens third place and Carmen Nnugyn honorable mention.
Heaven & Earth | Apr. 11 - Jun. 4, 2009
This solo show for Eszra Tanner is comprised of a series of digital prints revolving around the small sand dunes and bay area where Heaven and Earth seem to meet almost seamlessly. Eszra Tanner, a self taught artist, has always carried a passion for photography, but has only recently been inspired to take up landscape photography. He says that the colors in the sunsets and sunrises of Florida brought about this change after his move here from Las Vegas in October of 2006. And truly, if any local photographer knows how to capture the rich colors of our landscape, it is Eszra Tanner. Perhaps it is his fresh look upon what we see everyday that renders these landscapes so magical. Tanner uses “very refined techniques to digitally bend light and color to his creative will.” His images are produced by combining multiple photographs of the same scene, each shot at a different shutter speed, and the results are nothing short of breathtaking.
Although he often shoots sunrises and sunsets, Tanner is not afraid of darkness either, and he often superimposes storm clouds atop a stunning sky of gold and magenta. This unabashed bravado brings forth a dynamism and energy not often explored in beach photography, and for this reason Tanner is as much an artist as he is a photographer. Not only does his technique allow him to break through the mechanical limitations imposed by the camera, but it also expresses the stories and beauty of the area he sees in his minds' eye. In fact, Tanner's work looks as if it were a vivid memory of constantly changing landscape, rather than a simple static photograph. This in turn creates a feeling within the viewer of being transported from the gallery into this dream world so clearly his own. Indeed, Tanner's unique sensibility for light and composition is almost surreal in nature, and it brings a special kind of elegance and richness to otherwise ordinary beachscapes, making his work a joy to behold.
Girls Girls Girls | Feb. 13 - Apr. 5, 2009
Coallus, a multi-media artist living and working in Pensacola, FL presents his solo show “Girls, Girls, Girls." The installation embodies the influence of Coallus's favorite things- themes of women, cartoons, music, sugar and toys. His work blends the big-eye art forms of the 1970s with a contemporary street art style, and prominently features his signature "broken star" symbol. “Most of my art tells a story: things that may have happened, things I have seen, dreams and aspirations,” says Coallus.
Coallus drew his first tattoo flash series in 1995 and started working as a tattoo artist in 1999. In those years he developed his rendering skills and unique style. Since then, he has gone on to exhibit nationally in Los Angeles, Indianapolis, various cities in Georgia, and all over Florida. He says, “I have never had any real art classes. I just love to create and can't stop... I have to keep working, so I get a lot of practice.” He spent years traveling the country with his band, leaving his mark on city streets from coast to coast. Coallus was heavily influenced by Shepard Fairey’s “Obey” campaign. Fairey's guerrilla art inspired him to create his own mark: the broken star. Representing broken dreams and perseverance, it is a symbol that reminds him to never give up on what he believes in, and to always move forward, looking ahead.
Proper Reason | Dec. 13, 2008 - Feb. 7, 2009
Pensacola glass and ceramics artist Joe Hobbs presents his mixed media installation Proper Reason. This remarkable and thought-provoking work explores Hobbs' personal experience with religious and scientific themes, their interconnected relationship, and how they have shaped his view of the world.
Joe Hobbs grew up on the West Coast. He studied at the Rhode Island School of Design and the California College of the Arts. In 2004, Joe worked with glass sculptor Pino Signoretto at Pilchuck Glass School in Washington State. He returned to the region in 2005 as a member of the Poleturners Union of glass-blowers. In 2006, he was awarded the Gulf Breeze Best of Show for his glasswork. Joe received Great Gulf Coast Judges Award in 2008, and an honorary mention from the Pensacola Museum of Art. He was also a winner in the Twentieth Annual Cinco Banderas Competition where his work was purchased for the Permanent Cinco Banderas Collection.
In his past works, Joe examines the struggles of his ancestors and the effect those struggles had upon him in modernity. Describing his newest body of work, Hobbs says, “Proper Reason is a reflection of personal experiences and emotions that I hope others can relate to.” The show is composed of mixed media display boxes and brightly colored, thought-provoking clay sculptures.
Louisiana Left Behind | Oct. 17 - Dec. 9, 2008
New Orleans photographer Monique Michelle takes us on a photographic journey through the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. From the problems and warning signs that were ignored before disaster struck, through the very personal losses suffered in the aftermath, she allows us a glimpse into the life of a survivor.
Monique Michelle has been documenting her French Indian relatives living in the bayou communities of Lafourche, Terrebonne & St. Bernard parishes since 1998. Her imagery offers an intimate perspective into her family's endangered way of life. The photographic documentation she has captured exposes the threat of cultural extinction that exists in South Louisiana, caused by the backlash of environmental injustice and coastal erosion created by mankind's modern manipulations.
In 2005, she teamed up with fellow south Louisianian Mark Krasnoff, and together they documented their journey through the aftermath while following her 90 year old French-Indian grandmother through the debris, all the way "down the road", to Monique's family home in lower St. Bernard Parish. Louisiana Left Behind is a product of their post-Katrina work together.
Monique Michelle continues to document her family, their culture, and the south Louisiana community around her while attempting to rebuild, renew and readapt to life in south Louisiana, post-Katrina.