Duncan with Clearly Collaborative artists explaining designs and techniques

Clearly Collaborative Celebrates the Best in Florida Artistry

Nine Florida multimedia craft artists are taking part in a joint exhibition between St. Petersburg art studios, Florida CraftArt and Duncan McClellan Gallery. The new project titled “Clearly Collaborative” provides these selected artists the opportunity to collaborate with lauded master glass artist Duncan McClellan. Using a blank glass vessel blown by McClellan, the artists will work alongside McClellan and collaborate on how to integrate their preferred medium and personal style with a unique design to be completed at McClellan’s studio over a five-day residency. Florida CraftArt gallery will later host the final works on display in a special exhibit to open January 27, 2023.

Clearly Collaborative

Participating Artist and Mediums for the Clearly Collaborative Art Exhibition:

All the artist participating in clearly collaborative

Artists participating in Clearly Collaborative and joining McClellan include: Lucrezia Bieler (paper), Tallahassee; Joyce Curvin (mixed media), Palm Harbor; Pamela Fox (jewelry), Sarasota; Dominice Gilbert (metal), St. Petersburg; Nneka Jones (painting and fiber), Tampa; William Kidd (ceramics), St. Petersburg; John Mascoll (wood), Safety Harbor; St. Petersburg; Charlie Parker (ceramics), St. Petersburg; and Sue Shapiro (ceramics), St. Petersburg.

I think it is important for an artist to give back to the community,” says McClellan. “These collaborations are a way in which I can not only offer artists working in other media the chance to explore the magic of glass, but I am also inspired by their abilities, creativity, and techniques.

David Ramsey conceived the idea for the collaborative and serves as curator for the new exhibit. He joined Florida CraftArt Executive Director Katie Deits and McClellan in selecting the artists for Clearly Collaborative. “As a collector, as well as a Florida CraftArt board member, I am familiar with the diverse types of fine craft and many of the top artists,” he says. “I felt it would be interesting to offer these artists the opportunity to combine their skills and creativity with blown glass.”

Sue Shapiro “Masking” a vessel blown by Duncan, creating her own design
Sue Shapiro “Masking” a vessel blown by Duncan, Creating her own design to be a part of Clearly Collaborative
Duncan and Sue explaining sandblasting booth

After artists meet with McClellan to discuss their design and the challenges to expect while working with glass, they will receive access to the McClellan Gallery’s commercial sandblasting booth and tools to complete their project. When the artists’ work goes on display at Florida CraftArt from January 27 through March 11, 2023, the exhibition will also feature artists’ talks and other programming related to the collaborative.(LEFT: Duncan McClellan explaining sandblasting booth to artist participating.)

Florida CraftArt, located at 501 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg, Florida, was founded in 1951 and is the only statewide nonprofit to offer artists a platform to show and sell work through curated exhibitions and as presented in its 2,500-square-foot retail gallery. Its Executive Director Katie Deits says the gallery is excited to participate in this project which will give artists at a local, state, and national level to work together. “Half of our gallery on Central Avenue features only Florida artists while the exhibition gallery, as well as our annual Florida CraftArt Festival in November, showcase fine craft artists from around the country,” she says.

Artist John Mascoll and WoodworkWork
Artist John Mascoll with Woodwork wins at Mainsail Art Festival

Recently, collaborative organizers received news that all 5 of the 9 Clearly Collaborative artist who entered were recognized at the Mainsail Art Festival, which was held April 16-17 at St. Petersburg’s Vinoy Park. Pam Fox won an Award of Excellence; William Kidd and John Mascoll received Award of Distinction honors; and Dominice Gilbert earned an Award of Merit at Mainsail. Also from the group, Nneka Jones won Best of Show this year Garparilla Art Festival and Pam Fox won the Mayor’s Award (3rd place).  Organizers also got word that jewelry artist Pam Fox won the Juror’s Award at the Mainstreet Art Festival in Fort Worth TX in early April 2022, and both John Mascoll and Lucrezia Bieler exhibited in The Smithsonian Craft Show in Washington, DC. in late April 2022.

Pam Foxes Jewelry wins at mainsail art festival
Pam Fox won an Award of Excellence at MainSail Art Festival who will also be particpating in Clearly Collaborative

“Artists must keep growing and expanding their perception, and sometimes this needs to be done by creating a communal opportunity for shared vision,” McClellan says.

Collaborative piece Duncan McClellan and Sue Shapiro
Collaborative piece Duncan McClellan and Sue Shapiro

For more information about the upcoming Clearly Collaborative exhibition and other events and programs at FloridaCraft, visit the gallery website at floridacraftart.org and stop by its Facebook or Instagram pages. To learn more about the Duncan McClellan Gallery, go to dmglass.com and connect with the gallery at its Facebook and Instagram pages.

Content written exclusively for Destination Tampa Bay’s™ artist spotlights by Chris Kuhn. All photos of artist mentioned are for editorial purposes only-all rights reserved.