Seven questions with... Gianna Pergamo

Gianna Pergamo moves to the Arts Village in Pinellas Park.

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click to enlarge "Round Mer-Cat on White" - Gianno Pergamo
Gianno Pergamo
"Round Mer-Cat on White"

You've likely seen Gianna Pergamo's fanciful flourishes at local arts events — you can find her work in Strands of Sunshine and her work was a big, colorful hit at the last Holizaar. Pergamo's moved her studio to the Pinellas Art Village and there's a party this Friday to celebrate her move there (get the deets here). We asked Pergamo to chat with us — here's what we learned. 

What's the biggest difference between where you created before the arts village and where you create now?
Before I moved my studio into the arts village, I had a super tiny, home-based studio. Besides actually having adequate space to make art, now I'm surrounded by other people who are constantly making, which is awesome. Working inside an artistic community is inspiring and uplifting.

Tell us about the dachshund that inspired the mermaid dachshund.

The dachshund mermaid is based on my friend Emily's dog Wrigley. He is such a silly cute boy with a derpy tongue, and makes a majestic mermaid! (editor's note: he really does)

You have animal mermaids in your art quite a bit, actually. Why? Do you have any pets?
I lovveeee animals and I love making art about them. Dressing them up or turning them into mermaid animals is super-fun — I enjoy turning them into unique characters. I have two dogs, a pug mix (Sophie) and a rat terrier (Scout) that I use in a lot of my work. I'm also super into alligators.

click to enlarge "Bertha with a Cat" - GIanna Pergamo
GIanna Pergamo
"Bertha with a Cat"
What can people find in your studio, art-wise, when it's open to the public?
When you come visit my studio, you can see lots of finished and in-progress paintings. Also, a ton of characters that haven't been used in anything yet.

What are the requirements of working in the art village — do you have to do anything in particular to be allowed to be there?
To have a space in the arts village you have to commit to working in your studio a certain number of hours every week, and having it open to the public during designated times.

What's the next show you're a part of and where can people see it?
We do fourth Saturday Art Walk at the Pinellas Park Arts Village every month from 4-8 p.m. My next show will be WestFest, put on by Keep Saint Petersburg Local on April 19.

Just for fun: You have three wishes. You must wish for tangible things (not world peace, not that we all just get along — you get the idea) — what do you wish for and why?
1. Having a super-huge ranch/farm so I can have and foster tons of dogs.
2. A saltwater pool. This would just be awesome.
3. That self-driving cars already were the norm, and I had one.

Cathy Salustri is the arts + entertainment editor for Creative Loafing Tampa. Contact her here. 

About The Author

Cathy Salustri

Cathy's portfolio includes pieces for Visit Florida, USA Today and regional and local press. In 2016, UPF published Backroads of Paradise, her travel narrative about retracing the WPA-era Florida driving tours that was featured in The New York Times. Cathy speaks about Florida history for the Osher Lifelong Learning...
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