Florida Inspired

Florida Inspired 2016-2017

Florida Inspired 2016-2017 is a project of the Inspired Artist Studios @ PARC.  This inaugural traveling exhibition is a showcase of the work of emerging artists with intellectual and developmental disabilities along with a deconstruction of “Big Whale”, an original drawing by artist Alex J.
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Over the life of the project, audiences will be invited to be inspired by the “Big Whale” installation and contribute their own visual and literary works to be exhibited with a number of participating artists currently working at the Inspired Artist Studios @ PARC.  The deconstruction process is expected to lead to unexpected ideas and an expanded conversation about the relevancy and creative value of a diversity of abilities and experiences. 



Installation Locations

February 21–May 15, 2016

Leepa-Ratner Museum of Art
Tarpon Springs Campus of St. Petersburg College
600 Klosterman Road
Tarpon Springs, FL  34689

July 29–August 13, 2016

Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum
2240 9th Ave South, St. Petersburg, Florida 33712

August 22–September 22, 2016

Hillsborough Community College (HCC)-Ybor City Visual and Performing Arts Gallery
212 N. 15th Street
Tampa, Florida

March 1–July 31, 2017

Florida Division of Cultural Affairs
Gallery for Innovation and Design, 
R.A. Gray Building
500 South Bronough Street
Tallahassee, Florida  32399

Please note that all dates are subject to change.

Curator's Statement

Maria Emilia Faedo

Florida Inspired 2016-2017 directs attention to the energy of each artist’s mark. Sometimes, as it is true of Alex’s Big Whale, audiences encounter an intentional and confident mark. At other times, the eye is stirred by the movement of aimless colors that flow without apparent intention within the limited boundaries of the picture frame. Then, there are the well-told narratives. Tyler’s circular composition, Debbie’s poetic references, and the deliberate force of Danny’s color-driven paint. In each instance, it is the subjective energy of each artist’s mark that distances the elements, approaches the viewer and takes center stage. In each instance, the viewer is also enriched by the value of each artist’s personal challenge.

Inspired Artist Studios @ PARC works with and represents artists with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  These artists give visual forms to elusive concepts. Their labor functions to underline the great equalizer of every individual’s intimate journey.  The human struggle to have that effort count, to get there somehow, to connect and to be enough.

Audiences are invited to share their own journey by contributing a visual or lyrical expression to the Alex J. Big Whale installation. The invitation offers an opportunity for visitors to add the energy of their mark to an evolving dialogue.

We encourage you to be inspired by Alex’s work, acknowledge the value of your personal connection and reveal that value to be enough.

View Photos from the Leepa Opening View Photos from the Woodson Opening

View Photos from the HCC Opening View Photos from Tallahassee Opening