What’s happening in Tampa Bay art: Artists address the environment at the James Museum, Wearable Art turns 15

The annual event that is Wearable Art sees the return of favorites like Frank Strunk III this weekend.
Published August 21

MOTHER EARTH: Environmental Impact II

Much of the art in the James’ Museum of Western and Wildlife Art is centered around nature, so it’s apt that the museum would host the “Environmental Impact II” exhibition, opening Saturday. The exhibit is the second installment of the project curated and produced by David Wagner, LLC. It features contemporary paintings, sculptures and photographs that address climate change, the BP Deepwater Horizon Gulf oil spill and the loss of bee populations, among other environmental concerns. It features more than 20 artists, including Kent Ullberg, Guy Harvey and Karen Hackenberg. A special installation of a hanging blue whale will make a statement. Sayaka Kajita Ganz’s 16-foot sculpture, Nanami, is made entirely of recycled plastic objects, aluminum armature, wire and cable ties. The title is Japanese for “seven seas.” It’s the artist’s hope that the piece raises awareness about plastic pollution in the oceans. Included with museum admission. $20, $15 students and seniors, $10 ages 7-18, free for 6 and younger. $10 all day Tuesdays. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Tuesdays. 150 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. (727) 892-4200. thejamesmuseum.org.

MILESTONE: Wearable Art 15

The milestone in Dunedin this weekend speaks so much to Tampa Bay’s supportive artistic community. The Dunedin Fine Art Center’s 15th annual Wearable Art” provides a platform for artists working in the avant-garde, with creations most of us would never have the occasion to wear. This year’s event is special because Wearble Art original Frank Strunk III is showing again after taking a break for a number of years. Melissa Dolce, the Garden Fairies and Kikimora studios are among the other returning favorites. There will be a special fashion installation by Lina Teixeira. And fashion-inspired exhibit “If the Shoe Fits” features shoes made by local artists in a variety of media. New this year is the Groove-tique, a fashion boutique selling artist-made wares. The Pre-Glow and After-Glow parties return with live music and a cash bar. $85-$135 runway seats, $20 party ticket that lets you view the show from a video monitor. 7 p.m., runway at 8:30 p.m. Saturday. 1143 Michigan Blvd. (727) 298-3322. dfac.org.