Artists have always played a crucial role in increasing awareness and inspiring stewardship of national parks. Opened in 2002, the Dante Fascell Visitor Center gallery provides a space where contemporary artists, inspired by the beauty of Biscayne National Park and South Florida, can show their work. Past shows have included color and black and white photography, oil, acrylic, pastel and watercolor paintings, drawings, fiber, ceramics, collage and sculpture. Shows typically include a "meet the artist" reception, made possible by sponsors. For more information, please call 305-230-1144. Subscribe to gallery updates with the words "ART LIST" in subject line.
The BIG Picture: BIG Art on BIG Topics is now showing in the Biscayne national Park Dante Fascell Visitor Center Gallery. It features large-format photos, paintings, and drawings by artists DaveL, Sarah Ernst, Kelsy Patnaude and Pete Wintersteen all sharing interpretations of issues like endangered species, ocean acidification and sea level rise. The exhibit is on display from 9-5 daily from January 7 through April 3, 2022. The park will host a “meet the Artists” reception on Saturday, January 15 from 6-9 pm as part of its “Park After Dark” event. Admission to both the show and the reception are free.
Three of the artists were MFA classmates at Lesley University College of Art and Design in Massachusetts, and formed a bond over their environmentally-themed work. Painter Sarah Ernst lives in Virginia and creates contemporary abstracts in mixed media and oil. For this exhibition she chose to highlight the plight of endangered species. Rhode Island artist and competitive sailor Kelsy Patnaude takes inspiration for both passions from the sea by creating immersive panoramas using photo transfer and oil on canvas to highlight global sea level rise. Photographer (and Biscayne National Park ranger) Pete Wintersteen layers dozens of individual photographs to create oversized prints with incredibly sharp detail. Using seashells as subjects, he highlights how an increasingly acidic ocean is impacting marine life. Local favorite DaveL (a.k.a Dave Lavernia) is a South Florida Cuban-American muralist, painter and tropical street artist. He has created five pieces for this show featuring “limbs” of several of Biscayne’s endangered species who are “out on a limb.”
The Big Picture is part of the park’s Community Artists Program, started in 1997 as an outlet for the works of artists who are inspired by the beauty of Biscayne National Park. Over the years, the gallery has hosted some 100 shows featuring photography, paintings and drawings in a variety of media, fiber, clay, printmaking and sculpture. The program is made possible by the Florida National Parks Association and the Alliance for Florida’s National Parks.
For more details about the exhibit, visit the park’s website at www.nps.gov/bisc or contact park ranger Gary Bremen at 305-338-6584. For regular updates from the park, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @BiscayneNPS.
Last updated: January 6, 2022