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SRQ DAILY Jun 11, 2021

Friday Weekend Edition

Friday Weekend Edition

"The arts are a catalyst for change,"

- Shannon Fortner, Harvey Milk Festival Founder

[Museum]  Colescott & McGill: Exhibitions In Conversation
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

One year after the murder of George Floyd and the summer of protests that followed, the Sarasota Art Museum offers a summer of further reflection on and examination of race, image, identity and class with a pair of exhibitions showcasing works from two of the late 20th century’s most controversial and subversive Black artists.

Entitled Art and Race Matters: The Career of Robert Colescott and Charles McGill: In the Rough, each stands as an impressive exhibition on its own, from Colescott’s satirical reimaginings of the artistic canon to McGill’s violent deconstruction of the symbolism of the standard golf bag, but it’s the conversation that ensues from their pairing that elevates the experience.

“Both artists are talking about the same issues, but from a completely different orbit,” says Joe Lewis, artist and Sarasota Art Museum guest curator with In the Rough. “Colescott makes it possible for McGill to express himself the way he does. He lays out the roads.”

And so the experience begins on the first floor, where all of the seven massive gallery spaces are devoted to this first comprehensive retrospective of Colescott’s long career. 54 paintings, most of them large scale and taking full advantage of the museum’s high ceilings, take the viewer on a globe-hopping adventure through Colescott’s artistic development, watching the wry musings and profane humor blossom from cheeky background notes to a resounding chorus.

“He makes you laugh,” says Lewis. “And then something clicks and it’s not funny.”

As Colescott progressed as an artist and experienced more of the world, from Egypt to Italy to France and Cuba, his commentary on the Black experience in 20th century America became more prominent, biting and confident—but always smuggled under a sly sort of humor that winked as it twisted the knife. “The humor is the bait,” says Lewis. “The price you pay to get in.”

“Even though he was dealing with very serious issues,” he continues, “he framed them in this humorous environment that made those issues more accessible.” Whether a reimagining such as George Washington Carver Crossing The Delaware, replacing the first American president with the prominent black scientist and his shipmates with racial caricatures, or pointed commentary on sexual exploitation in something like American Beauty, Colescott uses the familiar and the comic to gain a foothold for more layered meaning.

Colescott’s work, in turn, serves as an ideological foothold for McGill’s work on the second floor, where the artist and golf instructor merged his two passions into a career that deconstructed what the artist describes as the racist and classist history of the game through the literal deconstruction and re-assembly of leather golf bags.

As a symbol of the divisions inherent to the game, the golf bag itself provides a prime example, being that literal burden which the golfer’s servant (read: caddy) must carry in order for his benefactor to play the game. And McGill rips, tears and shreds the bags to ribbons as he equally rends asunder the quaint and harmless façade of a game that too long remained a bastion of exclusion. 

“McGill’s take is something special, as is Colescott’s” says Lewis. “The two shows bookend each other and I am incredibly pleased with how well they connect. These issues are prominent today and these are ongoing conversations.”

However, he says, don’t let the seriousness of the subject matter preclude enjoyment of the art itself.

“The beauty usurps the politics.”

Currently on display at the Sarasota Art Museum, Art and Race Matters: The Career of Robert Colescott runs through October 31 and Charles McGill: In the Rough runs through November 21. 

Pictured: Robert Colescott, 'The Wreckage of the Medusa,' 1978, Acrylic on canvas, 66 x 84 inches © 2021 The Robert H. Colescott Separate Property Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo Credit: Ray Litman

[PRIDE Celebration]  Harvey Milk Festival Organizer Commemorates Pulse Nightclub Shooting
Andrew Fabian, andrew.fabian@srqme.com

After over a year of bad news and obstacles overcome, Shannon Fortner, like many, has become quite adept at rolling with the punches. Last year’s Harvey Milk Festival, which she founded and presides over, had to scramble to reconfigure its programming—and that was on top of navigating the economic downturn that saw many in the service industry, like Fortner, hit hardest.

And even as things ease back to normal with tomorrow’s Harvey Milk Festival performances at the downtown farmer’s market—which commemorates the 5th-year anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting in which 49 members of the LGBTQ+ community were murdered—the punches keep coming.

The timing of recent legislation signed into law by Governor DeSantis certainly feels like one of those punches. “He stood on hallowed ground in 2016 and promised he would always support those impacted by the Pulse nightclub shooting,” says Fortner, “but then he just pulled funding and support for the LGBTQ+ community during Pride month.” Fortner refers to SB 1028, a bill that makes it illegal for transgender girls to participate in sports consistent with their identity. Florida also struck funding from its budget that would have gone towards mental health services for survivors of the Pulse shooting.

Add to that the Florida Department of Transportation’s recent denial of the City of Sarasota’s request to light the Ringling Causeway in rainbow colors, and the context of tomorrow’s farmer’s market performances feel all the more serious.

“We started the festival to be a platform where folks could be supported to speak out,” says Fortner, “and our focus is still to create safe spaces for our community.”

Tomorrow’s event features music from 3rd year music major Aniston Hoffman, as well as dance and spoken word performances from Jess Pope and Gabby Keusch. “I’m really excited for all of the performers, obviously,” says Fortner, “but Jess’s and Gabby’s work will be a sneak peak into what we have planned for our two week festival in the Fall.”

Pope, a Ringling College graduate working towards an MFA in Visual Art, will share the stage with Keusch, who loops her voice to create ritualistic soundscapes. Together, they hope to offer up a performance prayer of sorts to honor the victims of the Pulse shooting and bring solemn awareness to the LGBTQA+ community’s continued struggle for equality.

“The arts are a catalyst for change,” says Fortner, “and I think events like this are an important part of the solution.”

The performances begin at 9am. A Pride march across the Ringling Causeway is scheduled for 6pm. 

Click here for more information.

[New Show]  Florida Studio Theatre Presents My Lord, What A Night

Florida Studio Theatre (FST) proudly presents My Lord, What A Night, an inspiring new historical drama from award-winning playwright Deborah Brevoort. Called “Provocative” and “Uplifting” by BroadwayWorld, this stirring play gives a rare glimpse into the real-life struggles faced by two important figures from the early-20th century: Marian Anderson and Albert Einstein. My Lord, What A Night will run in FST’s Keating Theatre starting Wednesday, June 30. 

Click here for more information.

[Environmental Protection]  The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program: Citizen Scientists Needed

Water conditions and the health of seagrass beds in the Sarasota Bay area have been changing rapidly, and there is a pressing need to gather more information about the amount of algae growing in our bays. Volunteers will help monitor macroalgae by snorkeling in an assigned area, estimating the coverage of seagrass and macro algae, and collecting samples. The Eyes on Seagrass survey will take place over a two week window from July 12 - July 24. Volunteers can pick any time during this window. The survey will take about one hour. Training and gear distribution will be held over three days. 

Click here for more information.

[Scholarship]  Manasota-ASALH African American Students Awarded $54,000 in Scholarship Money

Twenty-two talented students were awarded scholarships by the Manasota ASALH, Association for the Study of African American Life and History, Scholarship Program on May 28th, 2021. Since the inception of the program beginning in 2000, $490,000 has been granted to 263 students. This year, many fundraising events had to be cancelled. ASALH met this challenge by launching a successful virtual campaign drive, “Closing the Gap”, and was able to award $42,000 in scholarships. 

Click here for more information.

[Animal Care]  Manatee County Animal Services to Host Animal Vaccine Clinics

Manatee County Animal Services MCAS will host two more free vet vaccination clinics later this month. The free clinics were made possible through a $10,000 donation from the Manatee Community Foundation. District 4 County Commissioner Misty Servia will join MCAS for a pet vaccination event on June 19 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Trailer Estates Clubhouse, 1903 69th Ave. W. in Bradenton. Pet owners are asked to register online for the June 19 event here. Space is limited to the first 200 pets. 

Click here for more information.

[New Grant]  The Florida Center Receives $45,000 in Grants to help At-Risk Families

The Florida Center for Early Childhood received $45,000 in grants to help expand developmental therapy services in Sarasota and North Port and provide enhanced treatment options to at-risk children and families. 

Click here for more information.

[Achievement]  Humane Society of Sarasota County Exceeds 200 Adoptions in May

The Humane Society of Sarasota County (HSSC) has many things to celebrate. The organization, the area’s largest no-kill shelter, found forever homes for more than 200 dogs and cats in May. This record-setting month also included the single highest adoption day with 25 adoptions, found adoptions for 16 big dogs that usually have a harder time finding homes, and saved more cats and kittens than ever before. 

Click here for more information.

[New Hire]  Booker High Announces Athletic Program Changes for Next School Year

Booker High School announced a shift in staffing for key positions within their athletic program as the school pursues a new plan of action. The Tornadoes’ Athletic Director, Phil Helmuth, will be retiring from coaching as he devotes more time to family and travel. Stepping into the Athletic Director position will be Jammie Jordan, who is currently coaching girls’ soccer and working with the school’s exceptional student population. 

Click here for more information.

[New Hire]  FourThought Announces Two New Hires

FourThought Private Wealth (formerly Pinkerton Private Wealth), a wealth management firm headquartered in Venice, FL, has added Alex Herrington as Planner and Matt Macek as Client Relationship Manager to the team.  

Click here for more information.

[In This Issue]  French Lessons By The Sea

Learning about fabric sustainability with the sea sisters and makers of Mer Soeur swimwear. 

Click here to read the full article in SRQ's May/June 2021 edition.

[SOON]  HEALTH: Manatee County Animal Services: Animal Vaccine Clinics , June 19 – June 23, 9am-12pm and 4pm-7pm

Building on the success of last month's free pet vaccination microchip and licensing clinic for Manatee County pet owners, Manatee County Animal Services MCAS will host two more free vet vaccination clinics later this month. The free clinics were made possible through a $10,000 donation from the Manatee Community Foundation. District 4 County Commissioner Misty Servia will join MCAS for a pet vaccination event on June 19 from 9am to noon at the Trailer Estates Clubhouse, 1903 69th Ave. W. in Bradenton. Pet owners are asked to register online for the June 19 event here. Space is limited to the first 200 pets. District 2 County Commissioner Commissioner Reggie Bellamy will join MCAS for a pet vaccination event on Wednesday, June 23 from 4pm to 7pm at Manatee County Animal Services, 305 25th Street West, Palmetto. Pet owners are asked to register online for the June 23 event here. Space is limited to the first 200 pets. Free services offered include: Vaccines (rabies and distemper), Microchip (with pet registration), and Manatee County Annual Pet License. For more information on the free pet clinics, visit www.mymanatee.org/petclinic. Dogs must be leashed and non-aggressive. Cats must be in a secure carrier and pet owners must provide a driver’s license or state ID.

[SOON]  DANCE: Sarasota Contemporary Dance: Summer Kids Camp , June 28 – July 2, 9am-2pm

Sarasota Contemporary Dance Kids Summer Camps will run from June 28 to July 2 from 9am to 2pm. This camp is for children ages 5-12 and all levels are welcome and encouraged. If you're looking for a fun and unique camp for your child this summer click the link below for more information and registration. Located at SCD's Home Studio, 1400 Blvd of the Arts, STE. 300.  Intro to Dance is 9am to 1pm, Monday through Friday, Ages 5-8. No dance experience necessary. Join us this summer as we explore new ways of moving. Students will have the opportunity to take Contemporary, Hip Hop, Acro, Afro-Modern, Jazz and Creative Movement. Each day will also include craft time and a small provided snack. Early Bird Tuition: $150, Cost: $175 after June 1. The kids will have a mini-performance for parents and family, Friday, July 2 at 1pm. Intermediate Movers is 9am to 2pm, Monday through Friday, Ages 8-12 (Exceptions can be made regarding ages). Dance with us this summer and learn actual works from SCD's repertoire. Daily classes includes Contemporary, Hip Hop, Afro-Modern Jazz, and Acro. Students will also participate in a variety of games and crafts. Small snacks provided. Early Bird Tuition: $175, Cost: $200 after June 1. The kids will have a mini-performance for parents and family, Friday, July 2 at 1pm.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Sarasota Orchestra: Celebrate the Sounds of Summer , June 10 – July 24

Wear and share your love of Sarasota Orchestra. During the months of June and July, the beautiful music of Sarasota Music Festival and Summer Music Camp fill the air. By purchasing a limited edition T-shirt by July 24, you make it possible for Sarasota Orchestra’s mission to shine through programs like these and provide our musicians with the ability to enrich the community during all four seasons of the year. Help us celebrate the Sounds of Summer by wearing and sharing your love of Sarasota Orchestra with your friends. Thank you for your support of these wonderful programs. T-shirts purchased before June 26 will ship in mid-July. T-shirts purchased from June 27 through July 24 will ship in mid-August.

[SOON]  FOOD: Savor Sarasota Restaurant Week 2021 , June 1 – June 14

Mark your calendar. The 16th Annual Savor Sarasota Restaurant Week is coming June 1 through 14, 2021. Local restaurants are preparing multi-course, prix-fixe lunch and dinner menus for just $16 and $32 per person. Participating restaurants include Cafe Venice Restuarant & Bar, Cafe Gabbiano, Michael's On East Restuarant, Farlow's On The Water, Bavaro's Pizza Napoletana & Pastaria, Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, Cafe Evergreen, Ristorante San Marco, Crab & Fin, Melange, Bevardi's Salute! Restuarant, Fins at Sharky's, Element. Steak. Seafood. Pasta., Libby's Lakewood Ranch, Captain Brian's Seafood, Circo, CMX Cinebistro, Libby's Neighborhood Brasserie, Bohemios Wine & Beer Tapas Bar, Bistro-Sarasota Art Museum, Andrea's Kitchen, Overture Restuarant & Gallery Lounge in Art Ovation, Sardinia Restuarant, Der Dutchman Restuarant, Rodizio Grill, Mattison's City Grille, The Bistro at Concession Golf Club, and Flavio's on Main.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe: The Soul Sensations & Friends Special Event , June 11 – June 13, 8pm

In mid-June, The Soul Sensations & Friends return to Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe to perform on the popular outdoor concert stage, in support of WBTT and the important role it plays in the local community. Like 2019’s “Black or White: Makes My Music Right” and previous concerts produced by Dr. Randall Morgan to benefit WBTT, “Put Your Hands Together” is a revue of rhythm & blues songs and timeless pop hits. The show is a special celebration of optimism for the future as WBTT emerges from a challenging period, with songs of energy and love to include “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now,” “Before I Let Go,” “How Will I Know,” “Uptown Funk” and many other crowd-pleasers, performed by Dr. Morgan, Raleigh Mosely II, Leon S. Pitts II, Ywada Pitts and Latraia Savage, backed by the fabulous Soul Sensations Band. Edna Sherell will narrate; choreographer is Donald Frison. The band is: Judi Glover, music director and keyboard; Kenny Walker, bass; Errol Wise, percussion; Tommy LoBue, guitar; and Tom Ellison, sax. The proceeds from "Put Your Hands Together" will support WBTT’s mission. Shows take place each evening, Friday-Sunday, June 11-13, at 8pm. Tickets are $50/person, with seating in socially distanced parties of one or two. Go to westcoastblacktheatre.org or call the Box Office at 941-366-1505.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Manatee Performing Arts Center: Disney's 101 Dalmatians Kids , June 11 – June 12, 7pm

Based on the classic animated film, Disney’s 101 Dalmatians KIDS is a fur-raising adventure featuring Cruella De Vil, Disney’s most outrageous villain, and 101 of the most adorable heroes to set their paws onstage and will be showing on June 11 and 12 at 7pm. With a high-spirited score and lovable characters, this stage adaptation is certain to charm and delight all audiences. Pet owners, Roger and Anita, live happily in London with their Dalmatians, Pongo and Perdita, stalwart dogs devoted to raising their puppies. Everything is quiet until Anita’s former classmate, the monstrous Cruella De Vil, plots to steal the puppies for her new fur coat. The Dalmatians rally all the dogs of London for a daring rescue of the puppies from Cruella and her bumbling henchmen.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Orchestra: Sarasota Music Festival , June 12 – June 19

Get ready for one marvelous week of music-making this June as the sounds of the Sarasota Music Festival (SMF) fill Holley Hall. From June 12 to 19, SMF artistic leadership, faculty artists, and distinguished alumni will present a special series comprised of four concerts and a lecture. Each event celebrates SMF's deeply held values regarding the magnificence of chamber music and offers performances of the highest caliber. Due to health and safety considerations, the 2021 SMF will not include the teaching component that normally convenes 100 faculty and fellows from around the world, but Sarasota Orchestra looks forward to returning to the full festival format in 2022. This year, all concerts in Holley Hall will follow the same safety protocols that have guided the Orchestra's 2020-2021 concert season, including required masks, temperature checks at entry, and socially distanced seating for audiences of less than 50 patrons. Patrons who want to attend concerts in person can sign up to the events' registration lists through June 4 for the chance to purchase tickets. Streaming will also be available starting June 24, so patrons won't miss a note. A $40 SMF Streaming Pass includes online access to all five remarkable programs of this year's reimagined festival.

[SOON]  BUSINESS: Gecko's Hospitality Group: In-House Job Fairs , May 6 – June 17, 2pm-4:30pm

The Gecko’s Hospitality Group, an award-winning independent family of restaurants co-owned by Mike Gowan and Mike Quillen since 1992 will be hosting In-House Job Fairs at two Gecko’s Grill & Pub locations during the months of May and June, 2021. Gecko’s Job Fair schedules will be as follows: First and third Thursdays in May and June from 2pm to 4:30pm, starting May 6 through June 17, 2021 at Gecko’s Grill & Pub on SR 70 at Twelve Oaks Plaza, 7228 55th Avenue East, Bradenton and Gecko’s Grill & Pub on Clark Road at 5585 Palmer Crossing Circle. Applicants can expect to meet with a hiring manager and will be advised of the many company benefits the Gecko’s Hospitality Group offers employees, including Health, Dental and Vision insurance, paid time off, company 401(k), flexible schedule, meal allowance and opportunities for bonuses, career advancement and community involvement.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Florida CraftArt: Beautiful Bountiful Bowls Exhibition of Fine Craft , May 14 – June 26

Beautiful Bountiful Bowls is a juried exhibition of handmade bowls by outstanding contemporary fine craft artists. From around the state, 33 artists created 100 pieces in ceramics, fiber, glass, metal and wood.  Community programming (virtual and in person) includes a singing bowl sound healing and demonstrations about creating bowls in clay and wood. Glass artist and gallery owner Duncan McClellan will present an in-depth look at glass blowing bowls. At the virtual opening and awards reception on Friday, May 14 at 6pm, people will have the opportunity to virtually meet the artists and the show’s judge Catherine Bergmann (curator of Dunedin Fine Art Center). The show runs through June 26 when the People’s Choice Award will be presented. People can vote for their favorite work of art in the Florida CraftArt Exhibition Gallery and on Facebook. The exhibition’s sponsor is Tyler Jones of Premier Sotheby’s International Real Estate, along with support from Perry and Lisa Everett,  the City of St. Petersburg, and Florida’s Division of Cultural Affairs. Florida CraftArt is located at 501 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg. Gallery hours are Monday-Saturday, 10am to 5:30pm. and Sunday, noon to 5pm. For more information, visit www.FloridaCraftArt.org. On Friday, May 14 at 6pm Virtual opening with artists and judge Catherine Bergmann, Curator of Dunedin Fine Art Center. On Tuesday, May 25 at 6pm “Throwing and Turning” Learn about throwing clay on the wheel with Tyler Jones and woodturning with Nick Reale at this virtual event. On Tuesday, June 8 at 6pm Singing Bowls sound healing with Master Gopali, virtual and in person (space is limited to 10, reservations are required.) On Saturday, June 12 from 5:30pm to 9pm Second Saturday ArtWalk - Visit ArtLofts on our second floor. On Tuesday, June 22 at 6pm Renowned glass artist and gallery owner Duncan McClellan talks virtually about creating bowls in glass.

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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