The new year brings new art exhibits and the opening of another new gallery to the downtown Fort Myers River District in January.
The first Fort Myers Art Walk of 2011 will be Friday, Jan. 7. The monthly downtown event will showcase several new art exhibits and be followed by the expanded Saturday Art Fair on Jan. 8.
The monthly Art Walk runs from 6 to 10 p.m. on the first Fridays.
Art Walk includes more than a dozen art stops and will feature new art shows, live music, and the traditional after party. The January Art Walk welcomes another new gallery downtown. Paul Rodino is opening In One Instant on Jackson Street, just south of First Street. This new business marks the tenth art gallery space in the downtown.
Growing in participation, the seasonal Saturday Art Fair has outgrown the Patio de Leon and has expanded to nearby Dean Street (between First and Bay). The Art Fair has expanded its hours to 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and now features 25 local artist vendors.
Some highlights of the Friday, Jan. 7 Art Walk:
- Art of the Olympians: Opening reception for new show, Through the Eyes of a Child, an international children's art exhibit. Also showing artwork of Olympic artist Pat McCormick and Olympic artist Jean-Blaise Evequoz.
- Art League of Fort Myers: Opening of paintings exhibit entitled Imagination Gone Wild.
- Arts for ACT Gallery: Opening reception for new exhibit, Show Your Self, featuring more than 40 artists. Also showing will be Stephen Gill & Rhonda C. Long.
- Coloring The World: Opening of Sculpture on Steroids featuring the art of Mac Worthington.
- daas Gallery: Opening reception for exhibit by Portugese master artist Ric Moreira.
- Gallery Showcase and Information Center at IberiaBank (Bayview Court at First Street). Art Walk T-shirts are available at this location as well as buttons, maps and brochures.
- HOWL Gallery/Tattoo: The Captiva Skimboard Art Show comes to Fort Myers, showcasing South Florida artists. Plus, new work by HOWL artist Matt Lackey and others.
- In One Instant: Grand opening features the artwork of photographer Paul Rodino.
- The Oasis Condominiums: A new exhibit featuring festive dcor by artist Jackie M. Schuette.
- Sidney and Berne Davis Art Center: Exhibit featuring the beauty and mystery of the female body by photographers Doug Heslep and Jonathan Kane.
- Space 39 Gallery: Opening for Rockets, Robots, Donuts, featuring new visual works by R. Jackson.
- Syzygy Gallery: New exhibit featuring artwork of international artist Erich Schmidt-Unterseher.
Nearly 40 participants make Art Walk happen and they include the Alliance for the Arts, Art League of Fort Myers, Art of the Olympians, Arts for ACT Gallery and Boutique, Browtopia, Caf Matisse, Cigar Bar, Coloring The World, daas Gallery, Delicious Things, Digital Data Destruction, Downtown House of Pizza, Enjewel, First United Methodist Church, Florida Repertory Theatre, Fort Myers Redevelopment Agency, French Connection, Hampton Inn & Suites, Happenings A&E Magazine, Hideaway Sports Bar, Hotel Indigo, HOWL Gallery/Tattoo, Ichiban Japanese & Chinese Restaurant, IberiaBank, In One Instant, Legacy Harbour Hotel & Suites, Market America Realty & Investments, Morgan House Restaurant, The Oasis Luxury Condos, Potomac Bead Company, Renaissance Creativity Center, River District Alliance, Red Rock Saloon, Renaissance Creativity Center, Rossy Fashion Accessories, Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center, Select Transpo rtation, SKS PhotoShoot, Space 39 Gallery, Spirits of Bacchus, Starbucks Coffee, Syzygy Gallery, Twisted Vine Bistro, The Veranda Restaurant, What's Up Dogs? and the Young Artists Awards Program.
Held the first Friday of every month from 6 to 10 p.m., Art Walk features local and national artwork in the downtown art galleries and several art stops in the Fort Myers River District. The evening culminates with an after party at 10 p.m. The January after party will be held at Spirits of Bacchus on Hendry Street.
Another highlight of the very popular evening is the weekly Friday Night Live free concert series which takes place in the Patio de Leon. Sista Sanjah (reggae) will perform from 6 to 9 p.m.
Always a collector's item, new Art Walk buttons will be available at galleries that night. Art Walk has its own T-shirt (in red or black). Shirts are available for a $12 donation at the IberiaBank gallery showcase during Art Walk.
A free shuttle service courtesy of Select Transportation Inc., with stops planned near the art venues, and parking at the Harborside Event Center will be available for Art Walk patrons. Shuttle stops include The Oasis Condominiums, Art of the Olympians, and Enjewel on First Street.