Romero Britto

December 15, 2016 - January 22, 2017

Hollis Gallery

Brazilian-born and Miami-made, Romero Britto is an internationally renowned, iconic pop artist that uses vibrant color, playful themes and hard-edged compositions to capture the attention of both youthful spirits and educated art collectors. Self-taught at an early age, Romero was encouraged to travel to the United States where Pop Art was flourishing. With an unshakable resolve and belief in his own art, Romero spent the next few years exhibiting and attracting the attention of many before coming into his own and traveling to Paris, where he was introduced to the works of Matisse and Picasso, which influenced him to create an iconic style that The New York Times described as, “exudes warmth, optimism and love.” It is this unique talent which has established Romero Britto's reputation and granted him widespread international recognition. Romero’s pop sensibility has lent itself to collaborations with international brands such as Audi, Bentley, CocaCola, Disney, Evian, Hublot, Mattel, and Technomarine, as well as with international sporting events like the FIFA World Cups in 2010 and 2014, and most recently, the Olympic Games in Rio in 2016, for which Romero is Global Ambassador. Romero Britto is an artistic activist for charitable organizations worldwide and most importantly, an artist who believes "art is too important not to share." He serves as a benefactor, donating time, art and resources to more than 250 charitable organizations. A firm believer in the role of an artist as an agent of positive change, Romero Britto is committed to developing and supporting the powerful role art plays in world issues. Romero’s work evokes happiness and hope using a visual language all its own that is simply relatable to all.


Made possible thanks to Grace & Marco Franca and Posto9, a Brazilian Gastropub



Polk County Senior Exhibition

Student Gallery

December 17, 2016 - January 22, 2017

Awards Ceremony: Tuesday, January 17, 2017 6pm

This exhibition highlights the artwork of  Polk County School District senior high school students.

For more information about our Student Gallery, visit our Student Gallery page.

Sponsored by: MIDFLORIDA Credit Union



Tracing Antilles: A Shared Voyage

October 15, 2016 - January 15, 2017

Perkins Gallery

Humberto Castro, Immigrant, 2016, Mixed media on paper, 29 x 41 inches. © Humberto Castro

Tracing Antilles is an on-going project produced by multi-media artist Humberto Castro. Based on a series of historical and visual explorations of the islands of Greater Antilles (Cuba, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, and the Cayman Islands), the artist investigates the evolution of culture in this highly complex region. The work does not aspire to be a chronological account of historical events, but seeks to explore impressions, or traces, of collective experience that still influence the Caribbean psyche and artistic expression today.  A key aspect of his project is that of the artistic journey, travelling through the islands and immersing himself in the culture. Many of the works incorporate found objects brought from the islands.

Castro was born and educated in Cuba. He spent the first ten years of his career in Havana; then, in 1989, he immigrated to Paris where he lived for ten years, where he became active in the Parisian intellectual scene.  In 1999, he moved to Miami where the confrontation with his own past and memory inspired him to examine his personal history of migration and displacement within the larger context of Caribbean history.



David Maxim

David Maxim, Time's Speed, 1990, Acrylic on wood, canvas, cotton bags, twine, rope, metal fittings, and Styrofoam, Gift of Kelly Horner, Polk Museum of Art Permanent Collection 2001. 18.1

Three works by Maxim, Four Winds, Time's Speed, and White Circle, were on display in the Taxdal Gallery through December.

David Maxim is a San Francisco-based artist whose mixed media creations are about mythologies, the passage of time and natural forces. In many ways, these works are also connected to the themes of power and vulnerability: raging storms, human strength, psychological challenges and the impact of history. Maxim’s signature expressive style, with its energetic line and spilled color, contributes to depicting power and the anxiety of being impacted by that power.  

David Maxim’s work has been exhibited across the country and in Europe, and has been collected by many museums, including The British Museum in London, Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, and Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt, Germany.



Other Destinations

August 22, 2015 – December 13, 2015

Perkins Gallery

Other Destinations is curated from the Polk Museum of Art permanent collection and celebrates the allure of “somewhere else.” Formed as a counterpart to the current major exhibition Destinations in Paintings: The Kasten Collection, this exhibition highlights a contemporary critique of experiencing some new place or escaping our daily environments for renewal in some foreign space.

Hansen Mulford, Woods near Jupiter Springs, 1990, Oil on linen, Polk Museum of Art Permanent Collection 1990.89, Gift of the friends of Selma and Lester Wishnatzki in honor of their 50th wedding anniversary

Other Destinations is also intended to explore why we 21st-century travelers are drawn to specific locations and the criteria we use to interpret them. Why do we connect with certain places? How do we familiarize ourselves with and relate to other destinations?  Those questions often make intriguing subjects for contemporary artists, who are always chasing the “new.”

Most artists these days do not approach a destination strictly based on its aesthetic qualities. Unlike 19th-century academic landscape painters who relished in the natural beauty of a site, modern artists more often examine the surrounding context of a location, allowing that to form the visual landscape. This isn’t to say neither they, nor we modern viewers, do not acknowledge and appreciate the unique physical beauty of another place; we usually flail in the serenity provided by such beauty. But as our world grows increasingly smaller, it doesn’t always seem enough to marvel at a place’s objective beauty; there are nowadays subjective and unseen qualifiers that play in our full understanding of an inspiring destination.

The artworks included in Other Destinations are perhaps less literal and in some ways less lyrical than those romantic paintings from the academic tradition. Many of them contain a cerebral interpretation of a destination, or are perhaps visual commentaries on the society or culture of a specific place. In its characteristic tradition, modern art represents a world that no longer needs to be literally represented and inhabited; modern destinations must be contextually experienced, not geographically explored; understood according to their diverse social and cultural climates. Other Destinations provides that contemporary compliment.