Things to Do in the Tampa Bay Arts Scene

Taos Pueblo traditional dancer Tony Duncan performs at the James Museum on Sunday, April 28, at 1 p.m.

Things to Do
in the
Tampa Bay Arts Scene

Welcome to Creative Pinellas’ ongoing, continually updated listing of upcoming and ongoing events. We’ve created this listing to help locals find enriching and amusing things to do in their spare time and provide visitors with an event guide that reflects the diversity of culture in the central west coast region of Florida.

If you are promoting an arts-related event in the Tampa Bay region and would like it to be added to this listing, write to

When sending information, please be sure to include a clear description, venue/location and URL or phone number for more information. Note: Inclusion is dependent on the available time and discretion of CP’s editors and contributors.

This Weekend

Jim Gaffigan’s film, You Can Choose Your Family, is among the highlights of this year’s Sunscreen Film Festival.

The 14th Annual Sunscreen Film Festival The St. Petersburg Clearwater Film Commission team up once again to celebrate movie magic April 25-28 at the AMC Sundial Theaters and other venues in downtown St. Petersburg. Official selections include feature films with Jim Gaffigan, Ed Asner, Anna Paquin, Melissa Leo and Cynthia Nixon. Also, the Martin Scorsese-produced feature Tomorrow, spotlights a war veteran who’s befriended by a man who lives every day as though it’s his last. It won Best Feature Film at the Savannah Film Festival. Of the 128 films there are 106 shorts, 14 narrative feature films and five documentaries. In addition to flicks from the United States, there will be movies from Canada, Chile, Ecuador, France, Germany, Guatemala, Italy, Kenya, Latvia, Mexico, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Click here for the event program.

Fourth Friday in Downtown Tampa Arts venues along the riverfront will stay open late with free or discounted presentations. Stop at the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts for the opening of its new exhibition, Olivia Parker: Vanishing in Plain Sight. The series of still life images explores the aftermath of her husband’s Alzheimer diagnosis and eventual death.  Reception will take place from 5 to 6 p.m., and includes light refreshments. Olivia Parker will be presenting a lecture from 6 to 7 p.m.  For more events and venue info, visit

James Museum Anniversary Weekend/Jamboree at the James The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art invites members and potential future members to celebrate their first anniversary by kicking up their heels and enjoying Western dance instruction by Swing Time, live music by Cadillac Cowboys and a specialty menu by Dr. BBQ. Dress code includes blue jeans, cowboy boots & hats, western shirts or other gear that evokes the Wild West. Saturday, April 27, 6-10 p.m., 150 Central Ave, St. Petersburg. $250 per person, $10,000 for sponsor table. Click here for information and tickets. By day, the museum will celebrate with special tours, activities, talks and a special dance performance by five-time world champion Native American hoop dancer Tony Duncan. An internationally acclaimed dancer and musician, Duncan has appeared on the The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and at the White House. This weekend he will perform and lead a discussion on the Taos Pueblo traditional dance form on Sunday, April 28, at 1 p.m. To view a complete listing of events and times, please visit

Literary Carousel Join Keep St. Pete Lit and the Carousel photo event series for the third annual Literary Carousel featuring photography from the MFA archives in an “Ekphrastic” presentation —  a literary interpretation of a piece of visual art. Hand-picked images from the collection will be interpreted by Roy Peter Clark, Lee Irby, Lisa Kirchner, Cindy Stovall, Jon Kile, Shelly Wilson, Silvia Curbelo and Maureen McDole. Thursday, April 25, 6:30 p.m. at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg. The event is included with museum admission: $10 after 5 p.m. for non-members and free admission for members. For more info, click here.

One in Ten Andy Harrison’s one-act play offers a snapshot of the many consequences of illiteracy. A local, aspiring playwright, Harrison volunteered his time and talent for the project after being introduced to the pervasive problem by the The Literacy Council of St. Petersburg. Friday, April 26, at 7 p.m., at the Sunshine Center, 330 Fifth St. N., St. Petersburg. Beverages will be available for purchase. Click here for information and updates.

Painting in the Park Bring the kids to the MFA for a free, hands-on arts and crafts event. Includes 13 art stations, and the NOMAD Art Bus will pull up to the event. Dog-friendly, the event will offer a dog-watering station,  beverages, food trucks, and beer from Green Bench Brewery. Noon-4 April 28, Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg.

Pursuing the New Erotic  Instructor Amber DiPietra explores famous authors and more in an exploration of what erotic writing can be be. Hosted by Keep St. Pete Lit at the Morean Ats Center on Saturday, April 27, at 1 p.m.

The Florida Antiquarian Book Fair The oldest and largest fair of its kind in the Southeastern United States returns to St. Petersburg’s Historic Coliseum, April 26-28. The book fair features dealers specializing in books of every age and subject matter, antique maps, ephemera and other paper collectibles. Visit their Facebook event page for updates and details.

Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival  See elaborate sculptures made out of sand inside a 21,000-square-foot tent. The breathtaking event runs through April 28. $10 adults, $8 children 4-10, free for 3 and younger. $8 for seniors, military, police, firefighters and teachers with proper identification. 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Pier 60, Clearwater Beach. 727-871-8060.

5th Annual SunLit Festival The SunLit Festival brings together cultural organizations, writers, artists and businesses for 18 days of “Litertainment.” It runs April 11-28. Proceeds will support Keep St. Pete Lit’s literary programming. Read story by Tiffany Razzano here.

SunLit Festival: Poets & Lizards | A SunLit Celebration of New Southern Writing Southern writers Cynthia Arrieu-King, C.H. Hook, Soham Patel and Caleb Michael Sarvis will read from their new books of poetry and fiction at Lector Social Club in Tampa. Friday, April 26, 6-9 p.m. Click here for more details.

Safety Harbor Art Walk Celebrate the town’s creatives and businesses when 40 local artists show their works in 30 venues, turning downtown into a walking gallery. There will be guided tours where you can hear more about the business and artists, or you can grab a map and do a self guided tour.  Saturday, April 27, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Starts and end at SHAMC with a little celebration finale. Click here for Facebook event page;

Rob Sanders Stonewall Book Performance and Reading The Studio@620’s artistic director Bob Devin Jones and an ensemble cast bring Rob Sanders’ picture book Stonewall: A Building. An Uprising. A Revolution to the stage. This event is a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. A Q&A with the St. Petersburg-based author will follow the performance. Saturday, April 27, 6-8 p.m. ,at the Studio@620, St. Petersburg. Free. Click here for more details.

Not Just Music | A Sonic Journey Sheree Greer leads a sonic journey into narrative-based music by legendary musician and activist Nina Simone  and an exploration into work by contemporary singer Lauryn Hill. Participants will listen to select songs, discuss their storytelling elements and write reflective narratives. Saturday, April 27, 3:30-5:30 p.m. Dr. Carter G. Woodson Museum, St. Petersburg. Click here for more information.

Upcoming Exhibitions, Festivals & Celebrations

Cocktails & Collections Visit the Museum of Fine Arts the third Thursday of each month to mingle into the Museum garden and browse the galleries after regular opening hours. Enjoy live music in the Marly Room, order from a bar and partake of hors d’ouevres served in the gardens. Free or museum members. Takes place third Thursday of month 5-7 p.m. Click here for details.

Goya’s Los caprichos

Before Dalí: Goya – Visions & Inventions One of Spain’s most influential artists, Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes (1746-1828) made his mark on the world with paintings, drawings and etchings celebrated for their revolutionary spirit. Goya’s life and works deeply influenced Salvador Dalí and are considered by many scholars to be the basis for modern art, bridging Classicism and Romanticism and introducing democratic themes into a previously elite art form. The exhibition will feature two suites of first-edition prints, published in Goya’s lifetime, alongside three significant paintings representing unique themes of Goya’s works. Includes Los caprichos (1799), arguably one of Goya’s most famous works (through Sept . 15). La Tauromaquia (1816), which depicts the evolution and history of Iberian bullfighting, will be featured in a series of satirical prints that explore his visions of the superstitions and societal ills, on view mid-September through the end of the exhibit, Both suites highlight Goya’s printmaking, which was new in his day. Opens June 15 at The Dalí Museum, One Dalí Boulevard, St. Petersburg. 727-823-3767, TheDalí.org.

Denise Ramos, “Cypress”

Files and Film 2019 Mize Gallery presents Files & Film 2019 | 6th Annual Juried Photographic Art Show. This exhibition features photographic artworks juried by Amanda Cooper, Catherine Bergmann and Robin Dana, curated by Xina Scuderi. Exhibiting 65 Florida-based artists, Files & Film is an annual exhibition founded in 2014 to support artists working in photography, and to celebrate photography as an art. All works are for sale. Exhibit opens with a reception on Saturday, May 4, 6-10 p.m. and stays on display through June 1. Click here for updates and details.

Undertones: The University of Tampa’s BFA graduation Exhibition Discover promising artists on the verge of breaking out. Undertones features 10 graduating artists working in a variety of techniques, including oil painting, papermaking, photography, experimental printmaking, encaustic painting, mixed media, sculpture, ceramic and video installation. The title references two main aspects of the exhibition: The techniques and processes within the artwork, which incorporate the influence of time on the visible surface of the art, plus political, emotional, ecological, personal, economic and social concerns. The seniors featured in the exhibition study art therapy, painting, drawing, printmaking and graphic design at UT. A reception will close the exhibition on Friday, May 10, 7-9 p.m. Gallery hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday. Scarfone/Hartley Gallery, 310 N. Boulevard. or more information, contact Jocelyn Boigenzahn, gallery director, at or 813-253-6217.

Visual Magic: Dalí’s Masterworks in Augmented Reality Brace yourself for a breakthrough special exhibition at The Dalí Museum this summer, when museum-goers can enjoy the Salvador Dalí masterworks thought a high-tech lens that uses Augmented Reality (AR). All we can tell you now is that the technology will provide information and a deeper understanding of the meaning behind  Dalí works and was created after gaining feedback from visitors who’ve enjoyed other virtual experiences such as the museum’s cloud room in the Magritte & Dalí exhibition. What’s more surreal than that? Opens June 15 at The Dalí Museum, St. Petersburg. 727-823-3767, TheDalí.org.

Uke-O de Mayo Cultures converge when the Tampa Bay Ukulele Society presents an all-day music and art fest on Cinco de Mayo. The event at Creative Pinellas’s scenic campus, located in Largo next to Heritage Village and Florida Botanical Gardens, will run from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Take part in a jam session, take lessons or check out a number of uke-playing headliners. Bayou Bistro Food Truck will sell food and drinks until 4 p.m. Click here for details and updates.

Ongoing Exhibitions

Abstract Expressionism: A Social Revolution, Selections from the Haskell Collection Get up close to the works of Willem de Kooning, Hans Hofmann and Helen Frankenthaler as well as newer artists. Runs through Aug. 11 at the Tampa Museum of Art,

Candy Schultheis’ Moon Over Water

Clearwater Arts Alliance Public Art Installation The public art at the parking garage at 640 Pierce St. in downtown Clearwater features the work of one of CAA’s selected signal box artists, Candy Schultheis. An award-winning artist based in Dunedin, Schultheis has shown her work throughout Rhode Island and Florida, including many solo shows and she teaches at the Dunedin Fine Arts Center. Her work is currently on exhibit at DFAC, Celestial Circle in Palm Harbor, and in her studio, CanLo Studio. For more information about the “Thinking Outside the Box” project, or to sponsor a new art installation on a signal box, please contact the Clearwater Arts Alliance at or call us at 727-245-0077.

The Cultural Connections of Edward S. Curtis The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art displays the images of early 20th century photographer Edward S. Curtis, who traveled the country to document “vanishing” Native American cultures. Curtis’ vivid portraits and scenes from daily life captured a humanity and a romantic view that appealed to the Anglo-American public of the day. His respect for Native people was ahead of his time, and the relationships he nurtured allowed for information gathering that would have otherwise been lost to history. Step back in time to explore tribal traditions and early photographic processes through Curtis’ lens, with premier images and masterworks on loan from the Robb and Susan Hough collection.

Imagine Museum Imagine Museum’s collection presents major works of American art created by founding, leading, current and emerging artists working in the field of studio glass.

Leepa-Rattner Museum  Artists Nathan Beard, Akiko Kotani and Rob Tarbell reveal unique and innovative art-making processes in UNEXPECTED: Art by Alternative Means, an intriguingly multifaceted exhibition at the Leepa-Rattner Museum. Beard utilizes a labor-intensive art process using tape as a means to create complex, undulating layers of painted patterns. Kotani is a fiber artist who creates drawings with bamboo silk thread, explores mark-making on glass and crochets a “melting wall” from plastic. Tarbell employs the medium of smoke to create portraits on paper and porcelain. Works will be up through May 19.  Additional exhibitions include David McKirdy: From the Collection (through May 19); Rattner and Surrealism (through July 7); Elemental: Fine Crafts from the Collection (through Sept. 15); and Made in Florida: The Art of Giving (through Aug. 9, 2020).

Museum of Fine Arts A Feast for the Eyes: European Masterpieces from the Grasset Collection, shows through July 28. Featuring 40 Old Master paintings of still lifes, landscapes and banquet scenes from the 17th and 18th centuries, the exhibition includes artists from the Netherlands, Germany, Italy and Spain. On loan from the Grasset family of Spain, the exhibition will be shown publicly for only the second time internationally; Theo Wujcik: Cantos, begins April 13 and runs through June 2. The show celebrates literary references in the work of the late accomplished master printer and painter — his series inspired by Dante’s Inferno; Fairyland Lustre: The Darkly Magical World of Daisy Makeig-Jones continues through Aug. 11. The exhibition excites the eye with vivid colors, metallic surfaces, and oftentimes bizarre imagery.,

Penumbra: Corridor of Ambience The fine art worlds of Tampa and St. Pete often converge when speaking of the painter, muralist and installation artist Ya la’Ford. Her upcoming installation at Seminole Heights’ Tempus Projects will take the viewer into a transformed and illuminated space with geometric-laden layers. On view through May 3. The gallery is at 4636 N. Florida Ave., Tampa.

Pin Point: David McKirdy with special guest Larry Allen Leslie Curran Gallery presents two artists with a keen attention to detail: David McKirdy, who lives and works in Tampa, create  patterns and fields  that “evoke associations from the atomic to the cosmic,” inspired by his time at the University of South Florida, where he earned a master’s degree in biology. Larry Allen, a graduate of Berea College, has spent decades perfecting the glazes and techniques you can find today in his art work. All of his pottery is wheel-thrown, made from a special black stoneware clay. The formed vessels are covered with a slip solution followed by a wax coating that allows for carving of designs into the clay, a technique known as Sgraffito. The vessels are bisque fired, then the interior is glazed and fired again to maturity. Exhibition  will be up through May 25.

Roadside Attractions April Seelbach left her homebase in St. Pete and took to the road to travel the country by van, but the resulting timeless and nostalgic paintings that organically emerged have turned out to be the artist’s bread and butter.  Read Creative Pinellas interview here. Runs through April 28. Gallery hours are Saturdays 11 a.m.-7 p.m. and Sundays 11 a.m.-3 p.m. or by appointment. Click here for Facebook event page.

Second Saturday Art Walk, St. Petersburg The Central Arts District, EDGE District, Grand Central District, Warehouse Arts District and downtown Waterfront District unite once a month to extend hours of studios and galleries. Expect romantic/Valentine’s Day themes with gift ideas that offer a unique, personalized, local-friendly alternative to candy and flowers. Find a map of participating galleries, studios, trolley stops and parking options at Free ArtWalk Trolleys run every 30 minutes. In addition, the Waterfront District galleries can be seen by using the free Downtown Looper, which runs every 15 minutes.

Sheryl Oring: Writer’s Block A grid stretching dozens of feet, 18 rusty metal cages imprison hundreds of 1920s and ’30s-era typewriters. The silence of Sheryl Oring’s sculptural installation powerfully implicates a 1933 Nazi book burning while protesting censorship today. 12211 Walsingham Road, Largo.

Theo Wujcik: Cantos Runs through June 2 at the Museum of Fine Arts,  Cantos celebrates literary references in the work of the late Tampa master printer and painter — specifically, his series inspired by Dante’s Inferno. 255 Beach Drive, St. Petersburg. Read more details at


Bill Graham & the Rock and Roll Revolution Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution explores the extraordinary life of renowned music promoter Bill Graham (1931- 1991) who helped launch and promote the careers of numerous rock & roll artists. The exhibition also looks at the life of a trailblazer brought to the United States as an 11-year-old Jewish refugee fleeing the Nazis, fueling a lifelong passion and advocacy for justice. Extended through June 30 at the Florida Holocaust Museum.

Jack Wilkins CD Release Concert: The Rundle Sessions The Tampa Jazz Club presents the famed saxophonist performing new tunes inspired by the “people, places, and vibe” of the Alberta, Canada. Sunday, April 28, 3 p.m., HCC Performing Arts Building’s Mainstage Theatre, 1411 E. 11th Ave.,  corner of E Palm Avenue and N. Avenida Republica De Cuba, Tampa.

Theater/Performing Arts 

Actor Chris Crawford

Buyer & Cellar Chris Crawford — winner of the Carbonell Award for his performance in Murder Ballad and a Theatre Tampa Bay Award for his direction of freeFall’s Assassins — returns to the freeFall stage to star in a new spin on upstairs-downstairs comedy. Crawford stars as Alex More, an L.A.-based struggling actor who takes a job working in the basement of a mega-celeb’s Malibu home. When the superstar makes it downstairs, things get complicated in Jonathan Tolins’ one-man show.  Opens May 11 and runs through June 9; talkbacks after every Friday night performance (except for May 10). Plus, a freeFall Foreword presentation featuring resident dramaturg and  production director Timothy Saunders will take place on May 19 and 26 immediately following the performance. These talks are free and open to all. Tickets range from $39.50 to $52.50.

Tampa International Fringe Festival Featuring acts from across Tampa Bay and around the World, the 10-day festival provides uncensored, envelope-pushing performing arts May 2-11. Genres include theater, stand-up, musicals, storytelling, improv and more. Click here for event program.

Lectures & Literary Events 

True Stories Writers are invited to share tales. Stories start at 7 p.m. the second Wednesday of the month, so get there early to get your name in the bucket, grab a seat, and order drinks and dinner. $5 at the door. Click here to reserve a spot as a reader.

Creatives Support

LitSpace Writing Classes Keep St. Pete Lit’s LitSpace offers low-cost, professional-quality lessons in writing poetry and fiction, creativity workshops and other literary-inspired classes. The classes give a voice to the community and helps create a vibrant new literary arts scene for St. Pete. $10-15 per class. The LitSpace Literary Arts Institute is located in the Morean Arts Center, 720 Central Ave., St. Petersburg.,

SHAMc Peer Review Group Essayists, fiction writers and poets are invited every fourth Wednesday of the month to the Safety Harbor Art and Music Center (706 2nd St. N., Safety Harbor) at 6:30 p.m. until all writers have presented. Bring one project (one poem, one chapter, one essay, one short story) of no more than 2,000 words, double-spaced, 12-point font, and the group will help you make it shine. Please come prepared as there are no copy machines or staplers available at SHAMc. Rules for critique and the way this group functions will be posted on

Call to artists: Studio@620 Quinceañera Celebration Entries are now being accepted from artists who would like to participate in a  group show presented in conjunction with The Studio@620’s 15th birthday event: a quinceañera celebration. Deadline for Entry is May 28; exhibit runs June 8-30. $20 per entry. Click here to register.

Call to Artists: Uke-O de Mayo The Tampa Bay Ukulele Society is curating 35 works of art inspired by Mexico and its famous artists for display (and sale) for a one-day show during TBUS’s free music and art Festival  at Creative Pinellas in Largo on May 5. First, second and third prizes will be awarded by popular vote. Prizes will be $100, $50 and $25 gift cards. Work must be family-friendly and ready for hanging (in frame or wired in back). Artists will be asked to state their inspiration for their artwork (one submission per person). Contact Emily Stehle, APR, (subject line ARTWORK), 727-688-7993 for details for all details. Drop off of work by Friday, April 26. Artists have an opportunity to sell their artwork with 50 percent of the sale price going to the artist, the remaining 50 percent to TBUS to support a Nomad Art Bus program.

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