Detroit vs. Tampa at new gallery

Published December 9, 2005

In recent weeks, it seems as though everyone I know has told me to check out Covivant Gallery (www.covivant.com)

The gallery is at 4906 N Florida Ave. in Tampa Heights, a short block north of where Florida, going south, changes to one-way.

Here's all I previously knew about that stretch of Florida Avenue: At several businesses, 500 bucks can get you a used car. I recently paid cash for a powder-blue minivan (yep, it's a soccer mom magnet) at a Florida Avenue lot. And if it stops running, heck, at least I can sleep in it.

Covivant's newest exhibition, 313 vs. 813, opens Saturday. As Ludacris can tell you, the title stands for Detroit vs. Tampa.

The gallery will present works by a trio of artists from each city, plus a wall installation by Bask (a.k.a. Ales Bask Hostomsky), who has a toe in each. It's the brainchild of new gallery manager Kristen N. Brown, who moved here from Detroit in 2001.

Saturday's opening reception, which includes music by the local hip-hop group Red Tide, runs from 7 to 11 p.m. Admission is $5.

The gallery is open Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m., and the exhibit runs through Jan. 1. (For information, call 234-0222.)

I expect this particular "competition" to be fairly polite, barring anything unexpected - you know, like my absurd fantasy that Rasheed Wallace (Detroit) and Ronda Storms (Hillsborough County) will face off over their collections of photographic studies ('Sheed: tattoo art; Ronda: heathens).

But just for fun, I did put together a completely rigged Detroit vs. Tampa competition of my own. Here it is:

NFL coaches

TAMPA: Jon Gruden led the Bucs to a Super Bowl win in his first season. Tony Dungy, who built that championship team, currently leads the 12-0 Indianapolis Colts.

DETROIT: Steve Mariucci (15-28 as Lions coach) was canned last week, having failed to improve much on the achievements of a lawn ornament named Marty Mornhinweg (5-27).

Winner: TAMPA

NBA brawls

DETROIT: Pistons' home court (in nearby Auburn Hills) was the scene of arguably the worst brawl in professional sports history.

TAMPA: No such violence has ever occurred at the home of Tampa's closest NBA team, the Orlando Magic.

Winner: TAMPA

City's most dangerous places

TAMPA: We have a few rough spots here and there.

DETROIT: Detroit.

Winner: TAMPA

- Rick Gershman can be reached at http://www.sptimes.com/blogs/tampaarts/