Florida Strawberry Festival Fine Art Show Celebrating 40 Years of Artistic Talent BY HEATHER DAVIS | PHOTOS BY JULIAN CASTORENO
imagination, and talent required in creating various pieces. Meletha Everett, a founding member of EHAG, has demonstrated each year since the Guild began supervision. This year she painted with watercolors on 15 x 22 canvases and several smaller, usually with three to four works in process at once. “Many dabbling with paint ask questions about the different media types,” she explained, “because they want to understand and have
courage enough to try something different. The many young people that visit encourage me about the future of art in our community. We’ll never fully know the cultural impact this has.” Everett added, “It’s so important we have artists who demonstrate their processes. This helps Festival visitors visualize Plant City as a patron of the arts. And every thriving community knows cultural arts attract new businesses, more development, and interesting families.” Truly, the EHAG Fine Art Show at the Florida Strawberry Festival is a multi-cultural, multi-media experience. For a complete list of winners, please visit http://www. flstrawberryfestival.com/fine-artshow-winners-announced-2/.
Professional artist Colleen Justin won third place in the watercolors division.
or 40 of the 82 years the Florida Strawberry Festival has existed, one highlight has been the juried and judged Fine Art Show. The show was established in 1977 by the Plant City Art Club before the East Hillsborough Art Guild (EHAG) assumed responsibility for the event 25 years ago. Today an estimated 100,000 visitors annually take time during the 11-day Festival to admire the creativity on display in the Milton E. Hull building. Comments prove the show never fails to amaze. Florida residents, including our winter part-timers, are eligible to enter. The Adult category includes both professional and amateur divisions, while the Youth category is organized by age. Artistic media include oils, acrylics, watercolors, graphics/mixed medium, miniature art, and sculpture. During the six-hour only entry day, artists can submit up to three
works with a per piece entry fee of $15.00 for professionals, $12.00 for amateurs, and $5.00 for children’s art. The day following, EHAG committee members hang the work which is judged the next. The Fine Art Show holds so many benefits for the wonderful artists who participate each year. The experience of having your art displayed in a juried competition, combined with the exposure to more than 100,000 people viewing that work, is notable. Artists also have the chance to sell their work (both originals and prints) and win awards that total more than $5,000.00 for the entire show. EHAG members always go above and beyond by volunteering hours upon hours to bring such an incredible display of high quality art. Additionally, numerous artists offer demonstrations so visitors can visualize the hands-on work,
More than 100,000 people visit the East Hillsborough Art Guild’s Fine Art Show at the annual Florida Strawberry Festival.