Naples Art Association: name, history, legacy

Naples Art Association logo

Many Naples residents and guests best know the Naples Art Association by its art programming that takes place at The von Liebig Art Center, built in 1999. But did you know the organization was founded more than four decades before it had its current building?

The Naples Art Association began in 1954 when founders E. George Rogers, Elsie Upham, and Grace Lake got together. They decided to form a nonprofit organization with local artists who lived in Naples and to enhance the quality of life in the growing small town. Over the years, the Naples Art Association has been entrenched in the development of Collier County and provision of art education. Artists who were with the organization in the earlier years recall exhibiting work at the Beach Club and the Naples Depot, among other locations. The Naples Art Association has grown in membership numbers and in services it offers since it opened the new building just off Fifth Avenue South 15 years ago.

In the organization’s newest marketing visuals, its name “Naples Art Association” features most prominently. In a cool-toned color palette and with soft curves, it sincerely expresses an organization that is woven into the fabric of the coastal community, committed to educating and promoting the value of the arts and to doing its part to energize economic development in Naples. The Naples Art Association continues to operate The von Liebig Art Center, hosting a variety of programs there each year, with a full schedule planned for its 60th Anniversary season.

The organization hopes this year that more people will begin to recognize the Naples Art Association for its commitment to the community and the art opportunities it provides – both at the art center and throughout the region – with exhibitions, professional development, educational classes, Art in the Park,  festivals and more. 

Do you have a story about how the Naples Art Association made a difference in your life? We’d love to hear your story.

Get involved today and help celebrate 60 years of creative impact through the visual arts.

Community leaders join Naples Art Association board

The Naples Art Association (http://naplesart.org), a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization, announces its two newest board members.

Andrew Sroka 2013Andrew Sroka, President and CEO of Fischer International, has volunteered to serve on the Naples Art Association board of directors. Sroka currently serves in a variety of leadership roles throughout Collier County. He is the father of two budding artists and says he always tries to promote art appreciation at home as well as in his professional work. He is keenly interested in the intersection on art and technology, and hopes to help the Naples Art Association along its path to create a unified artistic community in Southwest Florida that brings consistency and communication to the various disparate groups and organizations that exist. He aims to engage the community in celebrating the art that is all around us, promote art education for children, and generally help as needed.

Roger Weatherburn BakerRoger Weatherburn Baker, retired IBM executive, has also accepted an invitation to serve on the Naples Art Association board of directors. With a rich history in art dealing and collecting, and his work with several local art organizations, Baker was a natural fit for the nonprofit. Baker is the owner of International Art Gallery, former manager of the IBM Gallery of Science and Art and a past president of the Naples Fine Art Dealers Association. He says with his skills in communications and art shows, conferences and productions, he looks forward to continuing to contribute to the arts community in ways that that make a difference.

March 2013 in photos with the Naples Art Association

From the fourth annual Mercato Fine Arts Festival and the monthly installment of Art in the Park to special events with Collier Child Care Resources and Hattie Larlham Creative Arts, the Naples Art Association kept moving all month long. We opened a new exhibition at Physicians Regional Healthcare System and gave away $8,000 in scholarships to college-bound Collier County high school art students. We honored one of our amazing volunteers on the Cultural Walkway, and held the Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts on Fifth Avenue South. Goddess Night: The Fine Art of Being a Woman was a sold out event!

Art gives everyone a voice at the Naples Art Association

Outreach is an important part of the Naples Art Association's programming. In this photo, children from Grace Place took center stage. JAMA, an artist recently featured with the Naples Art Association, taught an art class for these children. The NAA hosted them afterward with an evening reception and exhibit at the von Liebig Art Center afterward. Here is Executive Director Aimee Schlehr at left talking with one of the young artists.

Outreach is an important part of the Naples Art Association’s programming. In this photo, children from Grace Place took center stage. JAMA, an artist recently featured with the Naples Art Association, taught an art class for these children. The NAA hosted them afterward with an evening reception and exhibit at the von Liebig Art Center afterward. Here is Executive Director Aimee Schlehr at left talking with one of the young artists.

The Naples Art Association supports several organizations and events this season that are engaging people with social, physical or developmental barriers to creating works of art. “Art is intuitive to each one of us, regardless of socio-economic status, training or natural ability, and is an expression of who we are,” said Aimee Schlehr, executive director of the Naples Art Association.

Big Impressions by Little Artists, March 7, 5:30 – 8 p.m.

This Impressionistic-style image was created by a preschooler, 4-year-old

This preschool painting bears striking similarity to Monet’s Antibes. Groups of children ages 3-5 quickly painted the dynamic skywash and seascape, while the tree was detailed by petite perfectionist painters Sydney, 5, and Sophia, 4, with small brushes and fingerprints.

Members of the CCCR Business 100 and the Naples Art Association will serve as hosts of the event, Big Impressions by Little Artists, which will benefit Collier Child Care Resources, Inc. This fundraising event will feature paintings created by toddlers to pre-school children, a live auction, hors d’oeuvres, refreshments and live entertainment. Tickets are $50. Proceeds will help provide scholarships for children in need and supplies for the childcare centers served by CCCR. Information or to purchase tickets, call 239-643-3908.

Collier Child Care Resources, Inc., (CCCR), is a private, non-profit child care agency that serves children, families and early learning professionals. We have had offices in Collier County since 1991 and expanded our offices to include Immokalee in 2001. Their mission is to support the needs of Collier County’s children, families and early learning professionals by providing high quality education, resources and child care services.

Hattie Larlham Creative Arts showcase, March 15, 5 – 7 p.m.

Art by Aaron from Hattie Larlham Creative Arts

Art by Aaron from Hattie Larlham Creative Arts

Come see paintings and sculptures at a special reception hosted by the Naples Art Association at The von Liebig Art Center in Naples, Fla., on Friday, March 15 from 5–7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. During the Friday evening reception, artwork from Hattie Larlham Creative Arts will be on display in The von Liebig Art Center’s main Watson Gallery.

Hattie Larlham Creative Arts is a nationally renowned art program that empowers people with developmental disabilities to communicate through artistic expression. The program began near Cleveland, Ohio, in 2007 with six artists with developmental disabilities and has grown to serve 87 people who produce artwork that is often juried at national art shows, including the upcoming Gulf Coast Fine Art Festival.

Events produced by partner organizations such as Collier Child Care Resources and Hattie Larlham Creative Arts emphasize the fact that every person is intrinsically artistic and through art everyone has a voice. “I think people will come away from these receptions with a better appreciation for art as a language form, and this event is especially impressive because preschoolers are producing these fantastic works of art,” she said.

For more on the Naples Art Associations’ community partnerships and programming supporting students to pursue the art careers, here is more on Avow Hospice’s annual butterfly release and merit-based scholarship and exhibition opportunities for Collier County high school juniors and seniors.

Naples Art Association gala features live “le artiste!” art creation

Thank you to each “le artiste” for sharing their inspirational talent at the inaugural gala to benefit the Naples Art Association. Check out the great work they are up to!

A work that Linda Benson painted live at Music Walk in Fort Myers.

A work that Linda Benson painted live at Music Walk in Fort Myers.

Linda Benson, oil painting and “Portrait Xpres­sions” in tropical colors, working on something new to capture the excite­ment of the evening

Benson is often seen in Fort Myers at events such as Art Walk, Music Walk and the Saturday Art Fair where she demonstrates oil painting in tropical colors at the Arts for ACT Gallery owned by Abuse Council Treatment Inc.

She attended the Art Institute of Chicago and the American Academy of Art prior to 40 years as a commercial artist. Work history: 20 years as a Chicago Tribune Creative Artist, 10 years Furniture Illustrator, 8 years Fort Myers Creative Artist & Supervisor (print advertising), 2 years Key West Composing and Art Dept. Manager (print advertising).

Recently the city of Fort Myers Arts & Culture Grant program awarded her an artist grant. The focus of her 2013 project as an individual artist is to hold an Artist Journaling Workshop for fellow artists. She paints daily aboard her 46’ Chris Craft, Art-See-Studio, the “ARTIST XPRESS.”

Linda will set up her French easel and paint plein-air on site working on canvas, starting on something new for the gala event. She plans to capture the excitement of the evening and extend her participation with the Naples Art Association as a new member.

"Smiling Budda" from Susan Daly's website.

“Smiling Budda” from Susan Daly’s website.

Susan W. Daly (susandalyartwork.com), Plein air watercolor, working on something new for this event.

“I work in all water media within the range of realism to abstraction.  Printmaking is another passion for me. The doors of experimentation are always open and the joy of the search is ongoing.”

Pat DeReamer-Surgener, Fiber art, work­ing on a special gift for a star in the arts!

DeReamer-Surgener is a mixed media artist who works in watercolor, and fiber. Her work has been included in many exhibitions in Florida and Kentucky.  “Making art has always been a part of my life. I`ve `arted` through life`s stages-of childhood, youth. marriage. motherhood. widowhood and remarriages- joy, love. sickness and health. My art is a still small voice WITHIN to cherish and share.”

One of Popo Flanigan’s “smileville” renderings!

Popo Flanigan (www.popoflanigan.com), Acrylic on canvas, working on a local, soon-to-be-demolished cottage.

Popo Flanigan invites her viewer/owner to “smileville” through her use of color and pattern. “What else could an artist ask for, but to hear over and over that her work makes people happy!”

John Goodlet "Drawn and Quartered" Digital painting. John teaches classes for the Naples Art Association.

John Goodlet “Drawn and Quartered” Digital painting. John teaches classes for the Naples Art Association.

John Goodlet, Digital Painting on Laptop Screen, working on: “Dennis After Tennis” and some new pieces as yet untitled.

John was a professor at The City College of New York where he taught  engineering and computer aided design (CAD) before retiring to Naples.

Since the early 1970’s he was a serious amateur film photographer using both 35 mm SLR and Poloroid color cameras where he specialized in portraiture. In 2000, when he purchased his first digital camera, he switched completely to digital photography and computerized image editing using a variety of software packages such as Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements and Corel Painter to mention a few.

Currently, his major interest is in digital painting as a form of artistic expression to enhance, modify, or embellish digital images. Digital painting utilizes scanned images (sketches, old prints, etc.) or digital photographic images as input to digital painting software which can be used to emulate a wide variety of  conventional painting techniques and brush styles (oil, acrylic, watercolor etc.) using either a mouse or a magnetic pen and tablet to “paint” the image on-screen. Hardcopy of the digitally painted image can be printed on canvas or watercolor paper from a high resolution inkjet printer (giclee).

Digital painting techniques can be used as an original art form – as John uses it – or to supplement conventional painting methods by allowing the artist to rapidly try out new composition, color or stylistic variations on the computer before going to the brush.

At The von Liebig Art Center, John teaches a course in Digital Photography and Imaging Editing Using Photoshop Elements.  His digital paintings have been displayed in a number of juried shows at The Naples Art Association and The Center for the Arts in Bonita Springs.

Just a peek at Leigh Herndon’s work. See more of this one, and a slide show, on her website.

Leigh Herndon (www.leighherndon.com), Rozome painting, silk, work­ing on Flights of Fancy

“Silk accepts dyes very brilliantly and the joy of working with color continues to fuel Leigh’s experimentation and new designs, often inspired by nature, especially the sub-tropical plants and birds that grace SW Florida. Mixing her own dyes results in custom colors that can’t be easily found elsewhere. Overlaying one transparent dye color over another creates an entirely new color, which she finds exciting. The versatility of hot wax used to create the designs lends unique textures to the creations.”

Best of Show, Dan Jensen, Cannes

Naples Art Association Adult Student Exhibition 2013 Best of Show, Dan Jensen, Cannes

Dan Jenson, Oil on panel or oil on linen, work­ing on a representational portrait.

“After doing metal decorative art and later metal sculpture I returned to my primary interest, painting . I  have always liked the the immediate gratification from painting that is unattainable  in the slower process of metal sculpture .My work is influenced by today’s  neo-German  realists like Richter, Helinwein, and Rudolf Stingel.”

An original work by Alisha Koyanis, "Kracken," painting on vinyl records.

An original work by Alisha Koyanis, “Kracken,” painting on vinyl records.

Alisha Koyanis (www.koyaniskreations.com), Acrylics, Mixed media. Acrylic on Vinyl records. Mixed Media Paper Doll Shadow Boxes, working on a new, French-themed piece on vinyl records.

“The Paper Doll Shadow box series is my latest creation. Inspired by my crazy characters in which I am always painting or doodling. I started creating paper dolls and yet wanted more. Each piece and scene is made entirely of paper in which I carefully paint, cut and joint together. Most all pieces have one or more moveable parts to keep the scene constantly changing for the viewer. All main charachters in my shadow boxes can be moved by the viewer to change the scene.

I love painting on found materials. Vinyl records are my favorite material of choice. The scene can constantly change as my imagination grows throughout the process. I can always add on more records to grow my background. Staring at a blank canvas has little motivation for my creations. Staring at a background of records with their unforgiving texture gives me a challenge. Vinyl records provide a perfect black background for my bright colors.”

Artwork by Rona Steingart. Learn more about her on her website by clicking the image above.

Rona Steingart (artschool-rona-steingart.com), Mixed Media (acrylic, collage), working on something new tonight.

“In addition to teaching, presenting workshops, and lecturing for Six Star Entertainment, I’m an active member of the Naples Florida art community.  As a member of the Board of Friends of Art of the Naples Museum of Art, I developed, coordinated, and was a presenter in a lecture series consisting of local artists demonstrating and lecturing on their own work. I have taught an adult painting course entitled “Mixing with the Masters” at the Naples Museum of Art, designed to showcase permanent works in the Museum as teaching tools and as inspiration for my students.

I am a native of Milwaukee, and hold a Master of Science degree in Education from the University of Wisconsin and a bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Washington University, St. Louis.  I owned and operated a gallery in Milwaukee showing and selling works of University of Wisconsin faculty and served as consultant to private art collectors.”

Naples Art Association gala “Bleu Moon on the Seine” to support future of art in Naples

blue-moon-on-the-seine-LOGOThe nonprofit Naples Art Association presents an inaugural fundraising gala related to its long-standing outdoor festival, Naples National Art Festival. The event will be held on Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013, 6 p.m. at the Naples Sailing and Yacht Club.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Wear your favorite artist-created jewelry!

The gala features a French theme, Bleu Moon on the Seine, with French cuisine, beverages, a live art auction and entertainment. For the occasion, guests are encouraged to wear their favorite one-of-a-kind, artist-crafted jewelry.

Live Art Auction

Beautiful fine art will be auctioned live at the gala, thanks to the generosity of previous years’ Naples National Art Festival award-winning artists, including Scott Amrhein, Albert Benedict, John Costin, John Herbon, Gillian Kemper, James Nemnich, Steven Potts, Lin Seslar, Jon Smith, Mark Sudduth, Michael Wommack and Judith Wood. Special thanks also to those who have helped underwrite this event: artnet.com; BB&T; Wollman, Gehrke & Solomon; Naples Estate Properties; Judy and John Hushon; and Robert and Carole Leher.

If you go:  

WHERE: Naples Sailing and Yacht Club, 896 River Point Drive, Naples, FL 34102

WHEN: Thursday, February 21, 2013, 6 p.m.

PARKING: Valet Parking

DRESS: Cocktail Attire; wear your favorite one-of-a-kind, artist-created jewelry!

COST: $150 per person

Please RSVP by Feb. 12, 2013 (call 239-262-6517, ext 100 or visit the art center)

Celebration of Art Continues with Naples National Art Festival

The 34th Annual Naples National Art Festival, held the weekend following the gala on Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 23-24, 2013 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, is consistently voted among the top 10 art festivals in the country by Sunshine Artist Magazine. The local community continues to count the Naples National among its premiere, must-see events. It showcases the talents of more than 260 artists from around the country and awards $5,000 in cash to top artists. The festival is held in scenic Cambier Park and along 8th Street South and draws crowds in excess of 22,000.

Call for Artists

The Naples Art Association Bleu Moon on the Seine Gala committee invites you to be a fun part of the upcoming event. During cocktail hour, from 5 to 6 p.m., you can help set the artistic Parisian mood. Only five (5) spots available. Here are the details:

Live Painting by Naples Art Association Artists

  • Bleu Moon on the Seine Gala Cocktail Hour
  • Set up at Naples Sailing and Yacht Club, 896 River Point Drive, Naples, on Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013 at 5 p.m.
  • Bring art materials along with a work in progress (or start on something new from scratch!)
  • Artists who participate will each receive a one-year individual membership to the Naples Art Association and be recognized in the program and in online and editorial promotions. Artists may also hand out business cards and promotional materials.
  • Sign up by Tuesday, Feb. 12, by calling 239-262-6517, ext. 109.

The Naples Art Association, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, operates The von Liebig Art Center, located at 585 Park Street in downtown Naples. Founded in 1954 by local artists, its mission is to educate and promote visual arts in Southwest Florida. Through its programs, the Naples Art Association is dedicated to serving individual artists of all ages and skill levels, along their creative journeys. It’s open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturdays in season. For more information, please call 239-262-6517, visit http://naplesart.org.

Naples Art Association leads landmark public art project

In a new community collaboration, the Naples Art Association teams up with the City of Naples and area schools to provide a meaningful art experience through creation of a landmark public art project. 

The mosaic mural will be on the left panel, shown here in the center, right near the entrance to the River Park Pool facility.

The mosaic mural will be on the left panel, shown here in the center, right near the entrance to the River Park Pool facility.

The Sample Foundation developed the Port Royal area and donated the River Park Pool in 1959. It was always the premise of the Sample Foundation that the area be a special place for children and residents of River Park, and a new public art project will creatively honor their intention. 

The Naples Art Association (NAA) is guiding a collaborative art education initiative among the City of Naples, school-aged students, artists and community stewards by producing a lasting display benefiting children and residents of River Park.

Through the “River Park Pool Art for Kidz by Kidz Program” a ceramic tile mosaic mural will be conceived, developed and installed at the facility. Participating schools include Seagate Elementary, Fun Time Academy, Lake Park Elementary, Gulfview Middle, St. Ann’s, and Naples High School.

NAA Executive Director Aimee Schlehr says the River Park Pool Art for Kidz by Kidz Program will provide an authentic hands-on art experience for children. “The Naples Art Association and fellow project collaborators believe in celebrating the artist in every child,” said Schlehr. “This pursuit is meant to impact everyone, promoting access to the arts for all, regardless of their ability or socioeconomic status. We believe the arts are critical to child and youth development and to strong and vibrant communities.”

Sponsorship opportunities are available to help offset the cost of the project.  Please contact the Naples Art Association for details.

The Naples Art Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, founded in 1954 by local artists. Its mission is to educate and promote visual arts in Southwest Florida. Through its programs, the Naples Art Association is dedicated to serving individual artists of all ages and skill levels, along their creative journeys. The NAA operates The von Liebig Art Center, located at 585 Park Street in downtown Naples. It’s open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturdays in season. For more information, please call 239-262-6517, visit http://naplesart.org/, like us on Facebook at http://facebook.com/vonliebigartcenter or follow Twitter at http://twitter.com/vonliebigart.