Category Archives: past

Grace Hartigan 1960-1965, The Perry Collection

January 19, 2018 – March 18, 2018

GRACE HARTIGAN 1960-1965, THE PERRY COLLECTION presents a rare selection of paintings and collages that represent Hartigan’s noted Abstract Expressionist style as it evolved in the early 1960s toward new levels of abstraction and representation. Long overlooked, Hartigan was a key innovator among the painters of the New York School.

Hartigan’s reputation as an important contemporary artist increased throughout the 1950s; she was the only woman represented in the much heralded MoMA’s 1956 show Twelve Americans that included Sam Francis, Philip Guston, Franz Kline, and Seymour Lipton; and her work was an integral part of MoMA’s New American Painting exhibition that toured eight countries in Europe in 1958 and 1959 and included Jackson Pollock, William de Kooning, Mark Rothko, Franz Kline, Barnett Newman, Robert Motherwell, Arshile Gorky, Clifford Still, and other leading Abstract Expressionist painters.  She was the only woman artist in both exhibitions.

More recently, Hartigan has been included in survey exhibitions looking at Abstract Expressionism from the lens of the 21st Century including: Abstract Expressionist New York at MoMA, 2010 that celebrated the achievements of a generation that catapulted New York City to the center of the international art world nearly seventy years ago and the groundbreaking exhibition Women of Abstract Expressionism organized by Denver Art Museum, 2016 that celebrated the often unknown female artists of this mid-twentieth-century art movement.

Hartigan is likewise noted for her influence on three generations, during her more than 40 years teaching graduate students as director of Maryland Institute College of Art’s (MICA) Hoffberger School of Painting, Baltimore.

The variety of paintings in this exhibition range from 1960 – 1965, and they are assembled by Hartigan’s Washington D.C. dealer, the late Beatrice Perry.  They are characteristic of Hartigan’s style at the time, a style of vivid color and texture painted on a large scale.

Similar works of this period are found in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Albright Knox Art Gallery, and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy.  The selection also demonstrates the shift in mood and thought as Hartigan transitioned from her studio and work life in New York to Baltimore, Maryland where she lived, painted, and thought until her death in 2008.

I think the thing about Hartigan that I admired the most is her purposefulness in her work. No matter the economic realities or the ebb and flow of the art world she had a plan for her work and she stuck to it. Her journals are very useful when it comes to learning about her thoughts and ideas as well as the day to day struggles to make ends meet while trying to paint and build a career in New York in the 50s.

—Michael Klein, Guest Curator, New York

Grace Hartigan, Reisterstown Mall, 1965, oil on canvas, 80 x 102 inches.  Collection of Hart Perry.

2018 Mennello Museum Invitational

January 19 – March 2, 2018

Opening on January 19, 2018, the second annual Mennello Museum Invitational will again highlight new work by contemporary regional artists whose work enriches our community and our lives in Central Florida.  The Mennello Museum Invitational serves to support our local artists, provide visibility for their work and introduce them to new collectors while giving our community an amazing opportunity to build their collection of art.

This group exhibition will be on view in the museum’s Marilyn Gallery from January 19 through March 2, 2018. and will serve as a heart-filled embrace of our creative community.  The public opening will be celebrated on January 19, 2018, with an Opening Reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. It is a great opportunity to see some incredible local artwork right out of the studios.

All work in the Mennello Museum Invitational will also be featured and available for purchase at the Evening with Fabulous Friends Gala on March 3, 2018.  The artists have generously donated 50% of their proceeds to benefit the Mennello Museum.

The 2018 selected artists include Weronica Ankarörn, Stephen Bach, Susan Bach, Matthew Cornell, Genevieve DeMarco, Todd Fox, Peterson J. Guerrier, Saulius Jankauskas, Martha Lent, Anne Mayer, Roland Rockwood, Andrew Spear, Lillian Verkins, and Vickie Wilson.

The Mennello Museum Invitational is curated by Paul T. Scarborough, Shannon Fitzgerald, and Katherine Navarro as an invitation to artists to present work in a group exhibition while supporting both the museum and the artists.



The Mennello Museum Invitational and GRACE HARTIGAN 1960-1965, THE PERRY COLLECTION:

Preview & Opening Reception
Friday, January 19, 2018

Members-only Preview
5:30 – 6:30 pm

Public Opening Reception
Free for members | $10 for Guests
6:30 – 8:30 pm





Art Credit:
Lillian Verkins, Five Palms, 2016, acrylic.
Vickie Wilson, Flower, 2017, acrylic on canvas.
Roland P. Rockwood, SOUBIROUS IV: The Imperial Prosecutor of Lourdes, 2017, acrylic, aluminum, reflective mylar, newsprint, pastel on wood panel with frame.
Andrew Spear, The Truth, 2017, acrylic and paint pen on canvas.


Time and Thought: Art of the United States from the Cornell Fine Arts Museum

September 19, 2017 – January 7, 2018

In partnership with the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College, the Mennello Museum is proud to present TIME AND THOUGHT: ART OF THE UNITED STATES FROM THE CORNELL FINE ARTS MUSEUM. This exhibition, on view at the Mennello Museum from September 19, 2017 through January 7, 2018, is drawn from the Permanent Collection of the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida and organized by its Curator, Amy Galpin, Ph.D.

The history of art of the United States is rich and varied. Often seen in comparison to their European counterparts, American artists demonstrated ingenuity as they sought to display power and identity through portraiture, revel in the beauty of their natural surroundings through landscapes, and comment on conflicted and troubling histories in the spaces in between. The artists who are represented in this exhibition serve as key conduits for which time—and specifically American history—is marked.

Moreover, this presentation not only focuses on the technical skill of the artists included but how these individual works represented prevailing concepts and trends during the time in which they were created. The list of artists in this exhibition includes Thomas Moran, Albert Bierstadt, John Kensett, Childe Hassam, Robert Henri, Grandma Moses, Jacob Lawrence, and Ed Ruscha.

In this exhibition, we are asked to think about time, place, and environment with a literary quote:

“Time and Thought were my surveyors, They laid their courses well.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Song of Nature”

Upcoming Events

Please join The Mennello Museum of American Art in celebration of the opening of TIME AND THOUGHT: ART OF THE UNITED STATES FROM THE CORNELL FINE ARTS MUSEUM.

City of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, the Friends of the Mennello Museum of American Art, the Mennello Museum Board of Trustees together with Executive Director, Shannon Fitzgerald, invite you to the opening reception.

Preview & Opening Reception
Monday, September 25

Members-only Preview
5:30–6:30 p.m.

Public Opening Reception
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Visitor tickets:

First Friday Tour with Exhibition Curator, Dr. Amy Galpin
October 6  |  11 – 11:45 am
Join Dr. Amy Galpin for a whirlwind presentation on concept and art in American history.

See all of our upcoming events.

This Exhibition is drawn from the Permanent Collection of the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida and organized by its Curator, Amy Galpin, Ph.D.

William Chase (1849-1916)
Young Woman with Red Flowers, 1904, Oil on canvas, 24 in x 17 ¾ in Gift of Gertrude Lundberg Richards, Cornell Fine Arts Museum 1967.19.

Three American Sculptors

October 14 – January 7, 2017

The Mennello Museum of American Art opened our 2016 Fall Exhibition season by featuring three extraordinary women sculptors: Alice Aycock, Deborah Butterfield and Barbara Sorensen.

The museum presents three outstanding American sculptors whose work powerfully explores materials and process in three different compelling ways to contemplate nature and the environment ranging from wind, earth, mountains, water and horses. Nationally renowned artists Alice Aycock and Deborah Butterfield push boundaries in scale, human perception and grace in aluminum, bronze, fiberglass and found scrap metal that awe. In addition, Orlando and Aspen based artist Barbara Sorensen creates works in clay and aluminum that beautifully explore both the fragility and forces of our earthen elements. The season is a celebration of women sculptors who have, for decades, significantly contributed to the still largely male-dominate field of sculpture in monumental ways.

Alice Aycock: Waltzing Matilda and Twin Vortexes

Grounds for Exhibitions − Inaugural Outdoor Exhibitions Series

September 2016 through September 2017

The Mennello Museum inaugurates Grounds for Exhibitions with two large-scale works by American sculptor Alice Aycock installed in the Marilyn L. Mennello Sculpture Garden. The beautiful twin works, Waltzing Matilda and Twin Vortexes were originally part of series of seven sculptures in Aycock’s significant outdoor exhibition on Park Avenue in Manhattan entitled Park Avenue Paper Chase. Grounds for Exhibition features year long large-scale sculpture exhibitions by nationally renowned American artists who otherwise would not be shared with Orlando audiences.

Shannon Fitzgerald states: “It is thrilling to inaugurate this outdoor exhibition program with such beautiful work by Alice Aycock, one of America’s most recognized and respected sculptors of her generation. I think visitors will delight in experiencing the stunning sculptures nestled in our lakeside landscape that challenges perspective, materiality, whimsy, and nature—in all its power and fragility. She continues: “This is an extraordinary opportunity for our community to contemplate the vital role art has and the impact it can have when shared in the Public realm.”

Deborah Butterfield: Horses from Florida Collections

October 14, 2016 – January 8, 2017

The horse for Deborah Butterfield serves as a metaphoric self-portrait – it represents the embodiment of historic and deeply ingrained feelings of strength, beauty and an inherent spirituality. The horse can transport us from place to place and from realm to realm; since prehistory it has remained one of the most constant images created by human beings. Her work is a combination of abstraction and reality. Butterfield has sculpted horses from many materials including mud and sticks, copper, scrap metal, and cast bronze. She creates sculptures that are strong, grand—yet always gentle—representing grace, gesture, solitude, and beauty.

Barbara Sorensen: Recent Acquisitions & New Work

October 14, 2016 – January 8, 2017

The Mennello Museum of American Art is delighted to share with the community recent acquisitions from celebrated artist Barbara Sorensen. Based in Orlando and Aspen, Sorensen has long been inspired by nature and the diverse materiality of our every changing environment. Michael A. Mennello has followed Sorensen’s career for over thirty years, has acquired work for his personal collection, purchased work and donated it to Orlando Museum of Art, and is now gifting 14 major pieces to the Mennello Museum of American Art in honor of Marilyn L. Mennello. For this acquisition highlight exhibition, Sorensen is also creating a new, site-specific installation that continues her experimentation with materials, movement and form as located in nature and constantly shifting, in undulating rhythm, pattern and palette.

Barbara Sorensen creates work in clay and aluminum that beautifully explores both the dynamism and force of nature, but also its calm and quietude that remain in and outside time. We are thrilled also by the opportunity to unveil a new body of work entitled Ripples created this summer in her mountainside studio specifically for our space. It will inspire and surprise!

The Museum published an exhibition catalog on the occasion of this exhibition.

The Beautiful Mysterious: The Extraordinary Gaze of William Eggleston

June 23 – September 3.


The Mennello Museum is pleased to present programs and events in conjunction with The Beautiful Mysterious: The Extraordinary Gaze of William Eggleston. Learn more.

Download the program flier.

The Mennello Museum of American Art presents the transcendental work of William Eggleston. Please join us for the opening reception on June 23, 2017. Learn more.

The Beautiful Mysterious: The Extraordinary Gaze of William Eggleston is guest curated by American novelist, Megan Abbott, and includes 36 color and black-and-white photographs from the University of Mississippi Museum’s remarkable permanent collection, including some photos never before exhibited.

William Eggleston, a renowned American photographer, is acclaimed for elevating color photography and transforming ordinary scenes into fine art. Through the eye of Eggleston, nothing is ordinary, despite his photographs’ apparent depiction of ordinary things and ordinary people doing ordinary things.  Eggleston once said, “I am at war with the obvious,” a phrase curators at the Metropolitan Museum of Art thought apt enough to use as the title for a 2013 exhibition of his photographs from their permanent collection

A Memphis native, Eggleston acquired his first camera in 1957 at age 18. During his time studying art at Ole Miss, his interest in photography grew. He soon began to experiment with color negative film. Today, Eggleston is a world-renowned innovator of color photography, transforming ordinary scenes into fine art.

The exhibition is organized by the University of Mississippi Museum, who owes its vast collection of Eggleston photographs to the generosity of Dr. William R. Ferris, scholar, author and founding director of the Center for the Study of Southern Culture, University of Mississippi who personally donated his collection to Ole Miss. Ferris, a photographer and longtime friend of Eggleston, describes him as “the greatest living color photographer.”  “He is the Picasso or Faulkner of what he does.” Ferris continues, “This exhibit allows everyone to know his work, which is part of the legacy of Ole Miss.”  Michael Glover, art critic for the British newspaper The Independent, agrees. His review of the 2013 opening of the permanent Eggleston installation at the Tate Modern was headlined, “Genius in colour: Why William Eggleston is the world’s greatest photographer.”

Greatest or not, art critics agree that Eggleston’s work has shaped art photography since 1976, when the Museum of Modern Art presented the now famous exhibition William Eggleston’s Guide, its first-ever solo exhibition of color photography.  Since that watershed exhibit, Eggleston’s work has influenced art photography and even filmmaking. Film directors citing his influence include John Huston, Gus Van Sant, Joel and Ethan Cohen and David Lynch.

It was Lynch who brought Eggleston to the attention of the exhibition’s guest curator, American novelist Megan Abbott, University of Mississippi’s 2013-2014 John and Renée Grisham Writer in Residence and an Edgar Award-winner.  Abbott has drawn her own inspiration from his photos for many of her novels. She helped choose the pieces for the exhibit, which capture scenes from more than two decades.  “To me, his photographs evoke entire worlds, not worlds we merely see, but worlds we feel, smell, touch,” she said. “When you look long enough at his photographs, like the gorgeous, lonely blue parking lot chosen as one of the exhibit’s central images, you get lost in it. You’re in another place.”  Acclaimed photographer, first cousin and Eggleston protégé Maude Schulyer Clay served as consulting adviser for the exhibit. In 2015, German photo book publisher Steidl produced a collection of Clay’s portraits titled Mississippi History. Steidl discovered her photographs while working with Eggleston on the multi-volume set Chrome (2011) and Los Alamos Revisited (2012).

Eggleston’s published books and portfolios, include Los Alamos (actually completed in 1974, before the publication of the Guide) the massive Election Eve (1976; a portfolio of photographs taken around Plains, Georgia before that year’s presidential election); The Morals of Vision (1978); Flowers (1978); Wedgwood Blue (1979); Seven (1979); Troubled Waters (1980); and The Louisiana Project (1980). William Eggleston’s Graceland (1984) is a series of commissioned photographs of Elvis Presley’s Graceland, depicting the singer’s home as an airless, windowless tomb in custom-made bad taste. Other series include The Democratic Forest (1989), Faulkner’s Mississippi (1990), and Ancient and Modern (1992).  In 2016, The Democratic Forest was presented in a solo exhibition at David Zwiner, New York with a new publication.

Of his 2013 Metropolitan Museum exhibition, At War with the Obvious, New York Times critic Ken Johnson writes “But photographs like Mr. Eggleston’s are not like movie images, which come in linear sequences, establishing explanatory narratives around scenes that would be mysterious, were they viewed in isolation.  There is no before and after here, so the photographs remain provocatively enigmatic, which accounts for much of their poetic resonance.  His pictures tease the mind, eliciting associations and possible meanings that swirl around them like bugs around a light bulb.”

In 2016, The New York Times Style Magazine featured Eggleston on the cover of the “Greats” edition, photographed by famed contemporary photographer Wolfgang Tillmans.  Writer Augusten Burroughs wrote “A visit with the American Master of color photography reveals him to be every bit as brilliant, confounding and heartbreakingly soulful as the pictures he makes.”

A clear spring rises somewhere on the home place, for the human strain begins there for Mr. Eggleston, and we see it in what follows: it turns into a river that runs through, or underneath, every place succeeding it.  Whatever is done to block it or stop its flow, it surfaces again.  Pure human nature proves itself in likely or unlikely places.

—Eudora Welty

William Eggleston, born in 1939 currently lives and works in Memphis, Tennessee.

The Beautiful Mysterious: The Extraordinary Gaze of William Eggleston is organized by the University of Mississippi Museum and Historic Houses with exhibition support provided by the Friends of the Museum. Additional support by Dr. William R. Ferris and the Eggleston Artistic Trust.

Art credit:
William Eggleston, Untitled, 1973, color photograph.
Collection of the University of Mississippi Museum and Historic Houses, gift of Dr. William R. Ferris.

OUR ORLANDO and American Youth: Our Identity

May 19 – June 18.

View all  of the Opening Reception photos.


OUR ORLANDO presents the work of five rising local artists who have shaped the visual fabric of The City Beautiful through art — enriching nearly every surface of the physical city. Their individual methods range in form and technical experimentation from calligraphy and comic arts to murals and the digital arts. These are the voices and visual architects who create the landscape of our Orlando.

Join us for the opening reception on May 19. More information.

In the exhibition’s premiere year, OUR ORLANDO features new and never before exhibited works from Katrina Constantine, Hillery Powers, Chris Tobar Rodriguez, Andrew Spear and Rhett Withey.

Katrina Constantine is a comic artist and illustrator from Orlando, Florida. Specializing in digital art, Constantine began teaching herself to illustrate digitally in 2001 and launched her own blog, Kicking Cones, in 2010. She turned her artwork and blog following into a full-time career.  Inspired by Bill Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes) and Sam Brown (Explodingdog), Constantine constructs witty and touching illustrations infused with meaning in short comics featuring her dogs, famous penguins and a cast of light-hearted, personified flora and fauna. Constantine animates portraits of her canine subjects, placing them in detailed, atmospheric landscapes. She pushes and evolves her methods, moving beyond outlined and flattened color fields of streamlined, easy-to-read images into dense textural digital layers of shiny, clean dog fur and playful grass.  Her goal is to enable the viewer to see and connect with another side of a misunderstood dog breed by depicting her pit bull mixes in heartwarming scenes. These honest and comical portraits are true to her own loyal and loving dogs’ daily larks.

Hillery Powers is a designer and hand lettering artist originally from Hammond, Indiana. She studied Art History abroad in Italy while pursuing dual Studio Art and Advertising degrees from the University of Central Florida.  She began her career in New York City and Big Sur, California, as an artist travelling across country discovering a passion to cultivate local arts communities, which she now applies to her home in Orlando. Co-founding Local Love Orlando and working with Macbeth Studio, Powers facilitated the creation of Local Love Nights to raise funds and awareness for small local organizations, like Zebra Coalition and Deux Mains Designs. Her art begins as a simple photo booth backdrop – large scale, lively, internet-ready and open for modern portraits. The concept; however, goes deeper into the idea of shared images in our social world, and is about the power of disseminating accessible and sharable information. For Powers, her creative works are a way to inspire action to stand up for, and aid, the marginalized in our community.

Chris Tobar Rodriguez is a multimedia artist and graphic designer born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. Tobar began his career as one of the youngest in his class at the Art Institute in Chicago before moving to Orlando to pursue a recording arts degree at Full Sail University. While in Orlando, Tobar discovered an admiration for the design of typography, color, and expression and completed his degree in Digital Art and Design. Tobar is a co-founder of the Orlando street artist collective B-Side Artists and his work has been shown nationwide. Combining photography, illustration, typography and pulsating colors, Tobar creates a symbolic language representative of personal and, sometimes, isolating, experiences. Inspired by notions on how the mind communicates with the soul, hints of color pull the viewer up and away from dark; an underlying but ever-present contrast. For the artist, each object portrayed represents a universal metaphor surrounding life — a weightless wish guiding one’s desire in the form of a feather on the back of an arrow, which either misses or pierces the chosen mark. The symbols Tobar uses describe a journey of becoming oneself through these actions of hope and aim.

Andrew Spear is a mural artist and illustrator born on the South Shore of Boston in 1973. He attended the Art Institute of Boston and The Ringling School of Art and Design before heading to New York City where he developed his notable graphic techniques in fine art and set design before settling in Orlando. Earning a popular reputation for murals around town of thin lined sheet-music meets pop-culture figures and scenes, Spear’s careful lines meld organic and geometric areas of highlight and shade that teem with energy, excitement, and vibrancy.  Harnessing the stroke of a pen into a signature style is not the end, and Spear’s resolve to unceasingly generate new and exciting work has led to a commitment to harness and elevate materials not often exhibited in the art world by pursuing a medium and new subject matter through colored pencils.

Rhett Withey is a design artist who was born and raised in Orlando, Florida. He serves as a board member of The American Institute of Graphic Arts Orlando Chapter and is a lead designer for BIGEYE advertising. Withey explores and illustrates the monsters and characters of our collective imaginations in humorous scenarios around Orlando, citing familiar landmarks and locales. Employing black graphic lines and large areas of color, Withey’s goal is to make the viewer smile, and even laugh. His stories marvel with admiration around the places and spaces we inhabit every day —  from the depths of Lake Eola where we paddle innocently on the surface to the dumpsters on Church Street after our nights out on the town. Beneath the humor, there is wit.  Even the strongest willed can feel the uneasiness of the world and may dream up terrors when surrounded by nothing but the deep, dark, and empty landscapes of the mind. The dark; however, swiftly rebounds when the monsters of our mind are revealed, pulled from the shadows and manifested.

Supporting and fostering the creativity of Orlando’s talented teen artists, AMERICAN YOUTH: OUR IDENTITY aspires to empower rising high school artists throughout Orlando, providing a space for engagement and conversations about their art. A common thread among the artists of OUR ORLANDO is the important role their high school educators played in their lives — pushing them to pursue their dreams in the arts. The local community was asked to submit artwork of all media based on the theme of identity — an array of overlapping or distinct qualities one uses to recognize self, a person, or group.


Opening Reception

Join us for the opening reception! More information.

Preview & Opening Reception
Friday, May 19

Members-only Preview
5:30–6:30 p.m.

Public Opening Reception
Free for members | $5 for visitors
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Catering and signature mixed drinks provided by NOVA Restaurant
Craft beer provided by Orlando Brewing
Music by FoxForce005


Art credit:
Chris Tobar Rodriguez, Native Touch, 2017, mixed media. Courtesy of Chris Tobar art.


January 27 – May 7, 2017.

  The Mennello Museum has acquired Bo Bartlett’s The American as part of our permanent collection.  Read about it here.

The Mennello Museum of American Art is pleased to announce the solo exhibition BO BARTLETT: AMERICAN ARTIST. The exhibition, which runs from January 27 through May 5, presents large-scale oil paintings that are figurative, psychologically imbued, beautifully rendered, and wonderfully sublime by one of the most significant American Realist painters of his generation.

Bo Bartlett is widely renowned for his multi-layered complex image making rooted in narrative, story telling, art history, literature, poetry, and every day life. Bartlett works in a long-established tradition in American painting that stretches from Thomas Eakins and Winslow Homer to Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth. Like these artists, Bartlett looks at America’s land and people to depict the beauty he finds in everyday life. His paintings celebrate the underlying epic nature of the commonplace and the personal significance of the extraordinary. Of Bartlett’s work, Andrew Wyeth wrote, “Bo Bartlett is very American. He is fresh, he’s gifted, and he’s what we need in this country. Bo is one of the very few I feel this strongly about.”

Additionally, with references to other American giants George Caleb Bingham, Robert Henri, John Singer Sargent, Thomas Cole, and Norman Rockwell, Bartlett likewise creates an image of time, place and individuality. And to add to this lineage, Bartlett’s work stunningly communicates a command of space, grace in gesture, and power in grandeur akin to European painters of history Goya, Delacroix, and Gericault. Bartlett hones figurative expression beyond history painting and beyond imitation and exactitude to place it in a highly conceptual endurance field; to play out, witness, and remember. His protagonists are of this world, observed in time—lone, isolated, afraid, confident, determined, longing—and rendered larger than life, in a manifestly American geography, yet are distilled in a quiet anticipation.

Bartlett was educated at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, where realist principles must be grasped before modernist ventures are encouraged. He pushes the boundaries of the realist tradition with his multilayered imagery―accessible and complex at once. Life, death, transformation, memory, and confrontation coexist easily in his world. Family and friends are the cast of characters who appear in his otherworldly narrative works. Tom Butler, museum director and Columbus, Georgia native states: “Although the scenes are set around Bartlett’s childhood home in Georgia, his island summer home in Maine, his home in Pennsylvania or the surroundings of his studio and residence in Washington State, they represent a deeper, mythical concept of the archetypal, universal home.” His work is in the collections of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Seattle Art Museum, Denver Art Museum, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and the Columbus Museum of Art, among others. Bartlett currently lives and paints on an island off the coast of Maine in the summer and in his hometown of Columbus, Georgia in the winter.

“I am delighted to share Bo Bartlett’s compelling work with our community, his work is provocative and timely in ways that brilliantly reveal in direct and non-linear narratives; what is not immediate- fascinates and lingers in the imagination. We are presenting work that spans two decades and considers notions of family, the American South, the mighty ocean, time, life, and death. Through landscape and portraiture, innovation and scale, Bartlett’s distinct realism is grand, epic, and meaningful as we contemplate our own narratives and place within our vast world. Bartlett’s characters convey a range of emotions, fortitude, resolve, and determination that prompts empathy whether physical, psychological, or instinctively. There is something in his paintings for everyone, they awe as objects, in subject matter and with a humanity that resonates.”

—Shannon Fitzgerald, Executive Director

BO BARTLETT: AMERICAN ARTIST is organized by The Mennello Museum of American Art and curated by Shannon Fitzgerald, Executive Director, The Mennello Museum of American Art and Public Art, City of Orlando. It is organized concurrently with The Orlando Museum of Art’s presentation of the exhibition The Wyeth’s and American Artists in Maine: Selections from the Farnsworth Art Museum. This occasion provides the opportunity to follow a distinctive American art history, an artistic legacy and trajectory that continues, and one that is so compelling in Bartlett’s astonishing oeuvre. This connective examination yields the rare opportunity to position a contemporary artists’ work in the context of his predecessors and peers working in the long-standing tradition of American realism. Bo Bartlett keeps realism relevant and narrative enthralling in contemporary art discourse.

2017 Mennello Museum Invitational

February 14 – March 3

The inaugural Mennello Museum Invitational, a group exhibition at The Mennello Museum of American Art, highlights new work by contemporary regional artists whose art enriches our community and our lives in Central Florida. A goal of the exhibition is to share the work of local artists, with a broader audience and encourage collecting art on a local level.

Open on Valentine’s Day, February 14, this exhibition, on view in the museum’s Marilyn Gallery, serves asa heart-filled embrace of our creative community, provides an opportunity to experience work fresh out of the studios, and delivers a contemplation of current thought, interest, and inspiration driving the ambitions of ten Orlando-based artists in dialogue with one another.

The Invitational aims to share recent work in painting and sculpture and a variety of expressions and interests within each medium from abstraction to representational; from marble to clay, and
from oil to acrylic. Inaugural artists include Victor Bokas, Shosh C., Mindy Colton, Nancy Jay, Richard Munster, Jackie Otto Miller, Victor Quino, Maria Ramos, Paul T. Scarborough, and Katty
Smith, all artists contributing to the quality of our creative life in Orlando.

All work in the exhibition, and more, will be featured and available for purchase at the 14th annual An Evening with Fabulous Friends Gala on Saturday, March 4, at The Four Seasons Resort
Orlando at Walt Disney World.

The Mennello Museum thanks all artists for their generosity in donating 50% (or more) of all sales to benefit The Mennello Museum’s art and education programs.

The Mennello Museum Invitational is curated by Paul T. Scarborough, Shannon Fitzgerald, and Katherine Navarro as an invitation to artists to present work in a group exhibition while
supporting both the museum and the artists. It is an exciting time to be an artist in Orlando, and this is one way the museum can support artists who live and work in our neighborhoods with visibility, peer collegiality, museum presentation, and introductions to collectors.