Local artist to be chosen for community project in Hillsborough County


“We can use the hallways or the waiting rooms,” Nancy Said. “I don’t even see what we have on the walls now.”

Many different artists are being considered for the community project, including Lori Ballard a photographer, Joe Griffith a painter, Edgar Sanchez Cumbas an abstract artist, and Marie Yoho Dorsey, an artist with heavy Asian influence. Exactly what the artists’ installation will be is up to their own discretion, however the committee stressed the influence of the community to be the most important aspect.

The Public Art Committee also introduced the idea of collaborating with Prodigy, an after-school prevention/diversion program for at-risk children from ages seven to 17. Ashley Cohen, manager for the program, announced that local high school students might be willing to join the Public Art Committee in choosing one artist for the social service center.  The students at Prodigy are introduced to an eight-week program that focuses on art and music as positive creative outlets.

“If the committee has money left over from this project, which is unlikely, we could also purchase works from upcoming artists (in the Bay area),” Iverson said.

The committee then viewed examples of works from Theo Wujcik, Bruce Marsh, and Roger Palmer. These works, Iverson noted, could be considered (with the committees approval) as possible “extra” paintings that could be placed around the community center.

Hillsborough County’s Public Art Committee met Wednesday, Nov. 3, to discuss the installation of new artwork at the University Community Social Services Center. According to Human Services Supervisor Nancy Luath, the new art pieces will provide a better feel for visitors in the Social Services Center, who may have fallen under hard times.

The Public Art Committee has received $10,000 to spend on the new art project, and it is looking for a local Tampa Bay artist to kick-start the project in 2011.  A large piece of art that reflects the community is what the committee is looking for in the installation, and is excited to begin an original work of art with an artist.

The community center, located near Fletcher Ave and 22nd Ave, is a plain, five-year old building and has clients coming in and out through out the day. Bill Iverson, Public Art Program Manager, hopes to use the hospital-white walls in the long hallways and waiting rooms as a blank canvas for the fresh art project.

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