Fairgrounds St. Pete lands Penny and Jeff Vinik partnership, taps nearly 70 artists to propose ideas for the art compound

It’s supposed to open next year.

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click to enlarge Fairgrounds St. Pete lands Penny and Jeff Vinik partnership, taps nearly 70 artists to propose ideas for the art compound

St. Petersburg-based art and technology start up, Fairgrounds is set to open in early 2021 and taking calls from artists right now.

The project is described as a destination for experiencing and creating immersive art and technology. The 12,000-square-foot art exhibition is part of the larger Factory St. Pete arts venue that will host exhibits, events, workshops and creative education programs, according to a press release.

Fairgrounds is to be a celebration of Florida—especially the weird and wacky—and will offer a variety of opportunities to artists and creatives.

Having just undergone its inaugural call to artists, Fairgrounds founders Liz Dimmitt and Mikhail Mansion were pleased with the results and have invited almost 70 artists to propose ideas for the project. 

“We have an impressive local talent pool,” Dimmitt said in the release. “Artists moving forward to the concept proposal phase include painters, muralists, technologists, illustrators, sculptors, installation artists, photographers, and more.”

Furthering the founders’ excitement for the project is the recent partnership between Fairgrounds and investors Penny and Jeff Vinik.

“Partnering with the Viniks, investors who understand the value of art and innovation and art patrons known for staging world-class, immersive art experiences, is a dream come true,” Dimmitt said. Dimmitt worked with Penny Vinik on The Beach at Amalie Arena (Amalie is home to the Tampa Bay Lightning, which Jeff Vinik owns).

Of those invited to work on the project are notable local artists like recent CL cover star Macy Higgins, Emiliano Settecasi (who curated Seminole Heights’ Best of the Bay-winning “Rapscallion” show), Chris Parks (aka Lucha king Palehorse) and Chad Mize (who made Gay pride cat famous).

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