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Cool art, warm artists

At the Cool Art Show this weekend, chat with congenial artists in the comfort of an air-conditioned venue.

By MARY ANN MARGER, Times Art Critic

© St. Petersburg Times, published July 21, 2000

That annual outside-in display known as the Cool Art Show returns to the University of South Florida's St. Petersburg campus Saturday and Sunday. And as usual, it will be:

Cool. It's an outdoor, booth-type show moved indoors to the spacious student activity center to escape the summer heat.

Warm. This is a show where the congeniality of the artists is almost as much an attraction as the art. These are people who like people. They've chosen to join the Professional Association of Visual Artists, where they can meet each other, discuss challenges and successes, and network. And many of them make their art in an environment that includes other artists, at home or in rented studio space.

Each year since 1988, they've held the Cool Art Show, their main event.

On view are works by 50 of the approximately 200 PAVA members. In addition to the artists pictured here, you'll find Judi Dazzio (watercolor), Denis Gaston (abstract portraits), Melissa Miller Nece (colored pencil), James Michaels (mixed media paintings), Yvette Galliher (oils), Steve Littlefield (graphics), Bill and Linda Renc (paintings, drawings, calligraphy), and others worth checking out.

Like the full scale counterpart shows held from October through May, the artists will be there, and they look forward to telling visitors about their work.

To help you ease into the atmosphere, we've talked to five exhibitors for some conversation starters. But don't stop there. Wander over to the artists and get acquainted with what they do and who they are.






At a glance

The 13th annual Cool Art Show is at the Campus Activity Center, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, Second Street and Sixth Avenue S, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission and parking (in USF lots) are free. For information, call (727) 553-1596.

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