Explore Upcycled and Repurposed Art at Vibrant New Exhibition at the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County

 

 

Posted by: Linnea Bailey

January 17, 2024

When Boca Raton-based professional artist Sonya Sanchez Arias learned about a book written by her great-great grandfather in the Smithsonian Libraries’ online archives in 2022, she knew she had found something special.

The book offers a historical snapshot of life on the southern Caribbean island of Trinidad, where Sanchez Arias grew up. A fifth generation Trinidadian (whose mother’s paternal French Creole side of the family stretches back even further), the book so inspired Sanchez Arias that she created an exhibition honoring her ancestors, her rich cultural heritage and celebrating diversity found both in Trinidad and South Florida.

Pairing found objects with digitally collaged hybrid portraits and texts to connect past and future, the result is a dramatic, not-to-be-missed solo art exhibition in downtown Lake Worth Beach.

The exhibition Sonya Sanchez Arias: Then and Now (Something Old Something New) will take place January 26 through March 9 at the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County’s Solo Gallery at its Lake Worth Beach headquarters. Free and open to the public, exhibition hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m.

Using discarded, recycled and alternative material to create her work, Sonya Sanchez Arias challenges the concept of beauty, addresses nostalgia, and honors the tenacity of her ancestors and various found objects that have survived over time. By pairing these objects with digitally collaged hybrid portraits and texts, she attempts to visually connect the past and the future and start conversations about topics from then and now.

“Sonya Sanchez Arias breathes new life into discarded objects by meticulously recombining them to create her narrative,” said Jessica Ransom, the Cultural Council’s director of artist services, who curated the exhibition. “Viewers should expect to spend some time discerning the individual objects in the amalgamation and then stepping back to view the whole as it has been conceived by Sanchez Arias.”

Selected through a highly competitive application process, Sanchez Arias is one of six Palm Beach County-based professional artists whose work was chosen by a committee for one of the Cultural Council’s coveted Solo Gallery exhibition spots. All the artists chosen for the 2023-2024 season are women.

Sonya Sanchez Arias: Then and Now (Something Old Something New) tells the story of Sanchez Arias’s journey and point of view moving from one multi-racial and culturally diverse island to a new and equally diverse experience in South Florida.

“My work incorporates the wisdom and experience of ancestors — both mine and others — through things they left behind,” she said. “Each piece in this body of work incorporates something old and vintage with something newly created with digital art and present-day technology. My goal is to celebrate the ‘now’ by merging these two together.”

And she was especially moved by uncovering her great great-grandfather’s book (circa 1874-1912), which inspired her to research the history of her home island and how its racial and cultural diversity has evolved through the centuries. That research led to this body of work, and the book itself will be present at the exhibition, she said.

“Sometimes to go forward, we must go back. By revisiting and understanding our history, we can move forward with greater wisdom and appreciation,” Sanchez Arias said.

In addition to creating mixed media assemblages, paper dresses and a popular line of art jewelry, Sanchez Arias has spent more than 25 years working as a successful photographic stylist, commercial photographer, and photographic art director.

Her one-of-a-kind artwork and distinctive style have been recognized internationally, nationally and throughout the Caribbean, with work in recent exhibitions at Resource Depot’s GalleRE, the Armory Art Center and the Box Gallery in West Palm Beach, as well as the Cornell Museum, Arts Warehouse and Arts Garage in Delray Beach.

“All of my art pieces are the result of manipulating or rearranging used and discarded materials,” she said. “These repurposed materials give my art a strong identity with unique characteristics effectively making each piece distinct and unique.”

Sonya Sanchez Arias: Then and Now (Something Old Something New) will run from January 26 through March 9 at the Cultural Council’s headquarters in Lake Worth Beach. Exhibition hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. Visit palmbeachculture.com for more information or to register for the opening artist reception on Saturday, January 27, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.; to RSVP, visit palmbeachculture.com/arias. To see more of her work, visit https://sonyasanchezarias.com/ or find her on Instagram at @cre8tivechild.

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store and offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center. The Council is open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673
pr@palmbeachculture.com

 

She.Her.Hers Exhibition

Cultural Council Invokes the Lived Experiences of Women with Free Contemporary Art Exhibition

 

 

Posted by: Linnea Bailey

January 16, 2024

An innovative exhibition of artwork focused on the lived experiences of women will soon be on display at the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County’s main gallery in downtown Lake Worth Beach.

The free public exhibition She. Her. Hers. will take place January 26 through April 6 and features the work of 10 Palm Beach County-based professional artists, all of whom are women. The exhibition will feature a diverse range of contemporary works by Olivia Rachel Austin, Amy S. Broderick, Heather Couch, Nazaré Feliciano, Laura Tanner, Sarah E. Huang, Autumn Kioti Horne, Lisa MacNamara, Quimetta Perle and Lisa Zukowski.

“While women artists are beginning to achieve recognition for their work, they remain under-represented in galleries and museums,” said Jessica Ransom, the Cultural Council’s director of artist services. “This exhibition focuses exclusively on the work of women artists and their responses to perceived requirements of domesticity, the many waves of feminism, and their own lived experiences.”

The exhibition is curated by Véronique Chagnon-Burke, Ph. D., an art historian, researcher, art advisor, art market specialist and co-founder of the Women Art Dealers Digital Archives (WADDA). Based in New York City, Dr. Chagnon-Burke served as a director at Christie’s Education for 20 years and is a co-chair for The International Art Market Studies Association and was a section editor for Bloomsbury Art Market, an online digital resource published by Bloomsbury Publishing in London.

Dr. Chagnon-Burke said the collection of works showcased in the exhibition are particularly inspired by the legacy of pioneering feminist artist Judy Chicago, as well as the works of art legends such as Hannah Hoch, Eva Hesse, Louise Bourgeois, Laurie Simmons and Marta Rosler.

“The ten artists of She. Her. Hers. continue to build a multifaceted artistic narrative to make more visible the diversity of women’s experiences,” she said. “These artists’ work is empowering and celebrates a long tradition of female agency. Led by strong, engaging aesthetic qualities, their art can contribute to the difficult conversations we need to have if we are to move toward a more inclusive society.”

Encompassing a diverse range of mediums and materials such as natural fibers, ceramics, discarded domestic objects and sequins, the materials used by the artists during the creation process are meant to spark a personal connection with each visitor.

“My hope is that people feel uplifted by these works,” Dr. Chagnon-Burke said. “She. Her. Hers. is meant to be energizing and inspiring, and something that people can draw from their own memories to fully experience.”

The Cultural Council’s mission is to nurture, promote and support a healthy, diverse and inclusive cultural sector. By focusing on the shared experiences of women and work by female artists, this exhibition is aligned with that, said Dave Lawrence, the Cultural Council’s president and CEO.

“We are thrilled to celebrate the work of talented Palm Beach County-based female artists,” he said. “As we continue our work to nurture, promote and support a healthy, diverse and inclusive cultural community, exhibitions such as She. Her. Hers. help to amplify voices and highlight the enormous impact women artists have in the arts.”

The exhibition will take place in the Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. Building at 601 Lake Avenue in Lake Worth Beach. Hours are Tuesdays through Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The council will host an opening reception on Thursday, January 25, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Artists from the exhibition will be present to answer questions and discuss their work. Reception is free for members; $20 for non-members. Visit palmbeachculture.com/whimsy for more information or to register for the opening reception.

On Friday, January 26, artist Autumn Kioti Horne will present their performance art piece red hen (impossible standard) at 11:45 a.m. at the Cultural Council. On Saturday, January 27, a panel discussion will be held at 2 p.m. in the gallery, featuring Dr. Chagnon-Burke and artists Heather Couch, Quimetta Perle, and Laura Tanner.

She. Her. Hers. is sponsored by Ellen Liman, Palm Beach Media Group, Florida Weekly, WLRN and The ArtsPaper (The Coastal Star) and Nason, Yeager, Gerson, Harris & Fumero, P.A. Habitat for Humanity is the exhibition’s community partner.

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store and offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center. The Council is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673
pr@palmbeachculture.com

 

‘Year of Extraordinary Support’ Continues with Funding for Arts Education Programs

 

 

Posted by: Linnea Bailey

December 15, 2023

The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County’s new arts and cultural education fund to benefit youth programs in The Palm Beaches will be funded through a generous donation from the Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation.

A game changer for the arts and cultural sector in 2024, applications are now open for the first round of the Cultural Council Arts & Cultural Education Fund to be awarded to organizations with arts and cultural enrichment programs. Grant awards will range from $20,000 to $200,000 over a two-year period. Funds will support organizations and programs offering arts integration and enrichment, opportunities for students to learn or improve skills in the arts, field trips, classes, and residencies in conjunction with arts and cultural organizations.

“We are honored to partner with the Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation for this new and impactful grant program for the cultural sector,” said Dave Lawrence, president and CEO of the Cultural Council. “The Cultural Council has an extensive history of grantmaking for the cultural sector. We’ll bring that knowledge and expertise to creating this new program to educate young minds in and through arts and culture.”

The new initiative is part of the Cultural Council’s recently announced Year of Extraordinary Support, or YES! campaign, which is poised to provide more funding for Palm Beach County’s arts and cultural sector over the next 12 months than it has at any single point in its 46-year history.

The YES! campaign is the culmination of planning and the creation of new funding initiatives supported by the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners, Palm Beach County Tourist Development Council, the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation, the Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation, and individual philanthropists that combined now total nearly $12.6 million to support the cultural sector in Palm Beach County.

The YES! campaign includes new grants and programs for cultural organizations and creative professionals across all disciplines, as well as increased funding for some existing programs. Due to the Council’s advocacy efforts and record-high tourism in the county since the pandemic, organizations who receive Category B and CII (funded by hotel bed tax through the Tourist Development Council) and CI grant funding (funded by ad valorem tax) will all receive funds from pools that have recently increased.

The Cultural Council has also partnered with Palm Beach County to introduce a new $3 million capital grant program utilizing American Rescue Plan funds, with eight organizations chosen to receive grant dollars for infrastructure, capital improvements, and other construction projects through the Palm Beach County Cultural Capital Fund.

Other new Cultural Council programs include an Arts Administrator of Color Fellowship program, a 10-month program meant to amplify new and diverse voices in arts and culture, build a leadership pipeline of arts administrators and graduate students interested in careers in the arts, and provide career enhancement opportunities.

Applications are also now open for a third round of the Council’s Artist Innovation Fellowship program, funded by the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation. This program provides $7,500 grants to 10 artists across all artistic disciplines that will allow for the creation of new works, to conduct research, participate in retreats or workshops, study with master artists in their field, or travel to gain new insight and inspiration for new work.

Coming next fall is an Emerging Artist Prize that will be open to all artistic disciplines and focused on professional development. Five artists will be paired with Artist Innovation Fellows as mentors and gain access and introductions to cultural organizations, public art professionals and galleries, as well as funding for materials or supplies. The Cultural Council has also commissioned three new Artist Ambassadors to help explore ways to support the sector and reach new organizations and artists. These new programs and funding initiatives were informed by a county-wide Cultural Sector Needs Assessment Survey that was completed by the Council in 2022.

To harness the excitement of YES! and provide an opportunity to broaden the initiatives and provide even more funding to organizations and artists, the Council will unveil the YES! Fund in January. Arts patrons, philanthropists, and corporate partners will have a way to join in the extraordinary support for the sector by contributing to the YES! Fund.

For those who would like to help the Cultural Council’s work go even further, the YES! Fund will directly support many of the Cultural Council’s initiatives. Details can be found on the Council’s new website, www.palmbeachculture.com.

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council also features work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store and offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center. The Council is open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

The Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation
The Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation was created in 1997 by the late Fred DeLuca, co-founder of the global Subway® restaurant chain, to empower individuals on their path toward self-sufficiency. Since its inception, the foundation has provided educational scholarship opportunities and grants to community-based organizations in the state of Connecticut. Today, the foundation invests in projects accelerating economic mobility, educational attainment, and health, to enhance the lives of youth and families throughout South Florida, Connecticut, and across the nation. To learn more, visit www.delucafdn.org.

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673
pr@palmbeachculture.com

Kristin Miller, Basking in Bougainvillea (detail)

Explore A Sense of “Wall-Life” at Thought-Provoking Exhibition at Cultural Council for Palm Beach County

 

 

Posted by: Linnea Bailey

November 29, 2023

November 29, 2023 (Lake Worth Beach, Fla.) — An inspiring mixed-media exhibition that references South Florida’s unique landscape is coming to the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County’s headquarters in downtown Lake Worth Beach.

Kristin Miller: We Become the Place will be on display December 8, 2023, through January 20, 2024, in the Council’s Solo Gallery. Free and open to the public, exhibition hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m.

We Become the Place is an exhibition that creates habitats through the layering of mixed-media materials in both works on paper and sculptural installations. Referencing South Florida’s flora and fauna, marine life and horizon lines, these bodies of work create a sense of “wall-life,” which dances delicately between 2D and 3D spaces exploring concepts of identity and adaptation.

Acting as nature’s gesture drawings, air plants and jellyfish are shapeshifters, while flora and fauna create a consistent narrative. Nature changes and morphs to its specific location, becoming the place. Through quiet observation, people adapt as well – floating and drifting through new identities, creating a personal and natural symbiosis between our daily life and the physical environment.

“My work is an exploration of my relationship with nature and the distinctive landscape of South Florida,” Miller said. “It’s about being inspired by it, paying homage to it and using it to create my work. Everything I do is inspired by the sea, land or sky. I like to think of nature as the beginning of my work and experimenting with different materials as the end result.”

Selected through a highly competitive application process, Miller is one of six Palm Beach County-based professional artists whose work was chosen by a committee for one of the Cultural Council’s coveted Solo Gallery exhibition spots. All the artists chosen for the 2023-2024 season are women.

“Kristin Miller’s delicate and meticulous work elegantly conveys a sense of the Florida landscape and the environment that we experience here,” said Jessica Ransom, the Cultural Council’s director of artist services and curator of the exhibition. “This exhibition will be a calm space that encourages a visitor to stop, breathe, and absorb the imagery as if in nature.”

An artist, educator and designer based in Lake Worth Beach, Miller is department chair of fine arts and graphic design and a professor at Palm Beach State College, where she has taught for the last 16 years. She holds a bachelor’s degree in studio art from Florida State University and a master’s degree in visual studies from the Visual Studies Workshop.

Trained in photography, printmaking and installation, Miller’s mixed media studio practice includes works on paper and installations. Her work has previously been seen in the Cultural Council’s 2023 and 2021 Biennial exhibitions, as well as in the recent juried shows Waves at Arts Warehouse in Delray Beach, Art on BRiC Walls: A Boca Raton Museum of Art Juried Exhibition in Boca Raton, the international art fair ArtPalmBeach and numerous Palm Beach State College faculty shows.

Kristin Miller: We Become the Place will run from December 8, 2023, through January 20, 2024, at the Cultural Council’s headquarters in Lake Worth Beach. Exhibition hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. Visit www.palmbeachculture.com/miller for more information or to register for the opening artist reception on Thursday, December 7, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. To see more of Miller’s work, visit www.kristinmiller.art.

 

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MEDIA CONTACT:

Linnea Bailey
Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
pr@palmbeachculture.com

 

cultural council

A “Year of Extraordinary Support” Announced by the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County

 

 

Posted by: Linnea Bailey

November 17, 2023

The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is poised to provide more funding for Palm Beach County’s arts and cultural sector over the next 12 months than it has at any single point in its 46-year history.

At the opening reception on November 16 for its Fall exhibition “Whimsy & Wonder,” Cultural Council President & CEO Dave Lawrence announced its Year of Extraordinary Support, or YES!, to a crowd of over 150 guests. The YES! campaign is the culmination of planning and the creation of new funding initiatives supported by the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners, Palm Beach County Tourist Development Council, the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation, and individual philanthropists that combined total nearly $10.6 million to support the cultural sector in Palm Beach County.

“Supporting the cultural sector is absolutely essential – now more than ever. The arts and culture community drives economic impact, supports thousands of jobs, and contributes to quality of life in Palm Beach County,” said Lawrence. “We’ve worked diligently this past year to assemble new funding initiatives that provide support and new opportunities for creative professionals and cultural organizations. We are fortunate to have visionary partners to help us provide grants, fellowships, and other support services that will create a ripple effect in Palm Beach County.”

The YES! campaign includes new grants and programs for cultural organizations and creative professionals across all disciplines, as well as increased funding for some existing programs.

Due to the Council’s advocacy efforts and record-high tourism in the county since the pandemic, large and mid-sized cultural organizations who receive Category B and Category CII grants for tourism marketing, funded by hotel bed tax through the Tourist Development Council, will receive over $7 million in total grant funding – an increase of nearly $2 million in the next cycle. Small organizations who receive Category CI grants from the Council for operating support and education programs, funded by ad valorem tax, will receive funds from a pool that was recently increased to $300,000.

The Cultural Council also partnered with Palm Beach County to introduce a new $3 million capital grant program utilizing American Rescue Plan funds. At the November 16 event, the Cultural Council announced eight organizations with grant dollars for infrastructure, capital improvements, and other construction projects through the Palm Beach County Cultural Capital Fund.

The Council is also planning to underwrite an Arts Administrator of Color Fellowship program that will launch later in the year. The purpose of the 10-month program is to amplify new and diverse voices in arts and culture, build a leadership pipeline of arts administrators and graduate students interested in careers in the arts, and provide career enhancement opportunities through a series of workshops, networking, mentoring, and other curricula. Applications will open this summer.

Funding for creative professionals is equally strong. During the reception, Lawrence also announced that applications are now open for a third round of the Council’s groundbreaking Artist Innovation Fellowship program. This program provides $7,500 grants to artists across all artistic disciplines to allow artists to explore the creation of new works, conduct research, participate in retreats or workshops, study with master artists in their field, or travel to gain new insight and inspiration for new work. Previous recipients include musician Joshua Lubben (2021); visual artist Isabel Gouveia (2021); choreographer Donna Goffredo Murray (2021); visual artist Anthony Burks, Sr. (2021); visual artist Amy Gross (2021); visual artist Carin Wagner (2022); choreographer Shanique Scott (2022); musician Yvette Norwood-Tiger (2022); visual artist Henriett Michel (2022); visual artist Kianga Jinaki (2022); and actor Elizabeth Dimon (2022).

“This Fellowship is an opportunity for artists to step back, take a breath, and explore,” said Lawrence. “We are grateful to the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation for providing the funding to expand to 10 Fellowships this year and honor professional artists making a difference here in Palm Beach County.”

Additionally, the Council will introduce an Emerging Artist Prize in the fall that will be open to all artistic disciplines and focused on professional development. Five artists will be paired with Artist Innovation Fellows as mentors and gain access and introductions to cultural organizations, public art professionals and galleries, as well as funding for materials or supplies.

The Cultural Council continues to explore new ways to support the sector and reach new organizations and artists. Tapped to help in this effort are three new Artist Ambassadors commissioned by the Cultural Council, including musician Lindsey Mills; actor and performance artist Autumn Kioti; and writer and spoken word artist Desiree Reavis. Each subject matter expert will receive a stipend and provide valuable insight and resources in their respective discipline. The Cultural Council will build a section on its new website as a repository for these resources to assist artists throughout Palm Beach County with toolkits, links, and other important information that can be shared with the sector.

These new programs and funding initiatives were informed by a county-wide Cultural Sector Needs Assessment Survey that was completed by the Council in 2022. The project included an online survey and a series of in-person focus groups held around the county, which drew more than 520 qualified respondents. The results found that the top needs of artists included career support, assistance with generating income, funding to offset the cost of doing business, and meaningful networking. Top needs of cultural organizations included funding, board recruitment and management, staffing, audience development, and assistance with equity, diversity and inclusion.

To harness the excitement of Yes! and provide an opportunity to broaden the initiatives and provide even more funding to organizations and artists, the Council will unveil the Yes! Fund in January. Arts patrons, philanthropists, and corporate partners will have a way to join in the extraordinary support for the sector by contributing to the YES! Fund.

“By making a gift to the YES! Fund, you are helping to strengthen and grow our vibrant cultural sector,” Lawrence said. “We invite residents and businesses to join us in saying ‘YES!’ and making this the time that we provide more resources, more aid, and more support to cultural organizations and creative professionals in our community.”

For those who would like to help the Cultural Council’s work go even further, the YES! Fund will directly support many of the Cultural Council’s initiatives. Details can be found on the Council’s website at palmbeachculture.com/yes

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673
pr@palmbeachculture.com

Cultural Council for Palm Beach County and Martin Arts Logos

Groundbreaking Study Reveals Economic and Social Impact of Nonprofit Arts & Culture Sector in Palm Beach and Martin Counties

 

 

Posted by: Linnea Bailey

October 31, 2023

Two South Florida arts agencies — the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County and MartinArts — today announced that the nonprofit arts and cultural industries in Palm Beach and Martin Counties generated a combined $366.3 million in economic activity in 2022, according to the newly released Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 (AEP6), an economic and social impact study conducted every five years by Americans for the Arts. That collective economic activity — $205.3 million in spending by nonprofit arts and culture organizations and $161.4 million in event-related spending by their audiences — supported 4,738 jobs and generated $61.4 million in local, state, and federal government revenue across the two counties. Spending by arts and cultural audiences generates valuable commerce to local merchants, a value-add that few other industries can compete with.

Building on its 30-year legacy as the largest and most inclusive study of its kind, AEP6 uses a rigorous methodology to document the economic and social contributions of the nation’s nonprofit arts and culture industry, including 373 diverse communities and regions representing all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The study demonstrates locally as well as nationally, arts and culture are a critical economic driver of vibrant communities.

“The AEP6 study drives home the value of arts and culture to our local communities,” said Dave Lawrence, the Cultural Council’s president and CEO. “As expected, our numbers have decreased since the prior study due to the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is encouraging to see that audiences have remained strong. The Cultural Council has also recently completed its own studies of grant-funded organizations and we are confident that the overall economic impact is significantly higher than what the AEP6 study shows, as creative professionals and volunteers are not included in that particular study.”

The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County commissioned custom reports for Palm Beach County, Jupiter, West Palm Beach, and Boca Raton. The Council will share additional details from these reports in a series of meetings in December with Randy Cohen, Vice President of Research for Americans for the Arts, including a State of the Sector breakfast on December 15 at the organization’s headquarters in Lake Worth Beach.

The two South Florida arts agencies partnered to announce their results together because they share many of the same audiences and the region is stronger together, said Nancy Turrell, executive director for MartinArts.

“We are pleased to see that the economic impact of the arts in Martin County is strong. The data collected through our many partners in the community demonstrate just how vital the arts are to our residents and visitors alike,” Turrell said. “South Florida is a large region, and the power of the arts is clearly evidenced in the AEP6 results. Martin County is a smaller impact, but for our size, the impact remains significant.”

Nationally, AEP6 reveals that America’s nonprofit arts and culture sector is a $151.7 billion industry — one that supports 2.6 million jobs and generates $29.1 billion in government revenue.

“Arts and culture organizations have a powerful ability to attract and hold dollars in the community longer. They employ people locally, purchase goods and services from nearby businesses, and produce the authentic cultural experiences that are magnets for visitors, tourists, and new residents,” said Nolen V. Bivens, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “When we invest in nonprofit arts and culture, we strengthen our economy and build more livable communities.”

Key figures from the AEP6 studies in Palm Beach and Martin Counties include:

AEP6 demonstrates the significant economic and social benefits that arts and culture brings to their communities, states, and the nation. To amplify the study results and raise awareness of these widespread benefits with public and private-sector leaders, 17 national organizations partnered with Americans for the Arts on AEP6:

By measuring arts and culture’s wide-ranging impact, public and private sector leaders can work together to secure funding and arts-friendly policies that shape more vibrant and equitable communities.

The full report can be found at AEP6.AmericansForTheArts.org.

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store and offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center. During the summer months and through October 31st, the Council is open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. and the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. Starting on November 1, the Council will be open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

 

About MartinArts
MartinArts mission is to inspire participation and passion for the arts in our community. MartinArts has served our community since 1980 and as the local arts agency since 1986. With roots in our community, we strive to support the arts sector through advocacy, promotion, research, community planning and programming. MartinArts envisions a vibrant and thriving community where arts and culture are woven into every aspect of life. As a regional leader, MartinArts stimulates and advances the economy of the cultural community. MartinArts Council is a private, non-profit organization with a 501(c)3 status through the IRS. MartinArts Council is supported in part by the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Council on Arts & Culture, the City of Stuart, Martin County Board of County Commissioners and private contributions. MartinArts is located at 80 SE Ocean Blvd. in Stuart, Florida. For more information, visit MartinArts.org or call (772) 287-6676.

 

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MEDIA CONTACTS:

Linnea Bailey
Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
pr@palmbeachculture.com

Katelyn Johnson
MartinArts
kjohnson@martinarts.org

cultural council
Fourteen inspiring exhibitions featuring local artists and thought-provoking discussions will be presented at the Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. Building in Lake Worth Beach
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is bringing a dynamic season of arts, culture and community to The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®!Reflecting the Cultural Council’s mission to champion, engage and grow the arts in Palm Beach County, the Council’s 2023-24 season of exhibitions and events will showcase a spectacular variety of work by local artists at the Council’s downtown Lake Worth Beach headquarters. Opportunities to experience the magic include a full schedule of engaging exhibitions in the Council’s three gallery spaces. 

“We are delighted to welcome everyone in the community to the Cultural Council to experience our upcoming exhibitions,” said Dave Lawrence, the Council’s president and CEO. “Our new season kicks off with our Main Gallery exhibition ‘Whimsy & Wonder’ this fall, an enchanting exhibition celebrating quirky and magnificent visual creations. In January, we will present ‘She. Her. Hers,’ an exhibition that focuses exclusively on the work of women artists, followed by ‘Beyond Blossoms: The Power of Pollinators’ that will feature work that represents the flora that attracts pollinators to our region.”

 

Eleven other vibrant exhibitions will also be featured throughout the season in the Cultural Council’s Solo Gallery and Donald M. Ephraim Family Gallery. Discussions and special events with artists and members of the community will also be offered alongside the three Main Gallery exhibitions, starting with kinetic sculpture performances with artist Dave Blair on select Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. during Whimsy & Wonder. All exhibitions and their related programs are free and open to the public. The Council will also host a free series of Culture Talks in partnership with The ArtsPaper, a monthly arts-focused publication distributed inside The Coastal Star newspaper.

 

Upcoming programming highlights include:

Main Gallery: From November 17 to January 13, visitors are invited to experience Whimsy & Wonder, highlighting enchanting, engaging and enthralling visual creations. Florida’s flamingos will be represented in all their glory along with a wide array of quirky and beautiful visual creations. With specific installations that will evolve throughout the show’s run, visitors are encouraged to return again and again. One artist, whose self-created machine projects images, will offer showings for guests on select Saturdays.

 

Solo Gallery Exhibitions: Celebrate the work of individual artists, starting with Lauren Bertelson: Like Mother, Like Daughter, featuring self-portraiture combined with a variety of domestic crafts to create a feminist body of work, October 6 through December 2. Next up is an exhibition of artist Kristin Miller’s mixed-media “wall-life” works on paper and sculptural installations from December 8 through January 20.

 

Exhibitions in the Donald M. Ephraim Family Gallery: Visitors can take in Veterans of Palm Beach County, an exhibition in honor of Veteran’s Day that will feature the work of seven artists who are also veterans or have family members that are veterans, on display November 3 through December 9. Next up is Palm Beach County Photographers: iPhone Photography, juried by renowned digital imagery expert Jack Davis and celebrating the work of Palm Beach County-based photographers created via iPhone, on display from December 15 through January 27. This exhibition is a collaboration with the Palm Beach Photographic Centre.

 

The ArtsPaper Culture Talks: The ArtsPaper, a publication founded in 2008 by a group of Palm Beach County-based arts journalists, will host their second annual discussion series at the Cultural Council in January and February 2024. Guests include Ahmad Mayes, executive director of the Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach, in conversation with Greg Stepanich (January 13); and Marilynn Wick, executive producer and CEO of The Wick Theatre & Costume Museum, in conversation with Hap Erstein (January 20). All Culture Talks will take place at 2 p.m. Free admission; registration recommended by visiting www.palmbeachculture.com/council-events.

 

Other programs this season include: a Summer Jazz Series at the Cultural Council, featuring a series of intimate jazz concerts at the Cultural Council’s downtown Lake Worth Beach headquarters; Palm Beach County Open Studios and the annual MOSAIC (“Month of Shows, Art, Ideas and Culture”) program in May; and free professional development opportunities for cultural organizations and creative professionals will also be offered all season through the Institute for Cultural Advancement, the Council’s signature professional development program.

 

The Cultural Council’s popular Culture & Cocktails series returns for its 19th season at The Ben in West Palm Beach, with fun and fascinating conversations scheduled for January through April. And save the date for the Cultural Council’s annual fundraising event An A-MUSE-ing Evening: a not-to-be-missed evening that will dazzle with creatively-crafted food on Thursday, March 7, at The Hangar in Riviera Beach.

 

Additional events will be offered by invitation to members of the Cultural Council. The Council offers opportunities to individuals, creative professionals, small businesses and large corporations to get involved in the local arts community through its membership and sponsorship programs. To celebrate supporters who champion arts and culture in Palm Beach County, the Council offers “thank you’s” depending on giving levels, such as a subscription to the Cultural Council’s award-winning magazine art&culture, an exclusive member discount card offering savings to museums across the U.S. and VIP passes for art and antique fairs.

 

Sponsors for Whimsy & Wonder include Ellen Liman, Publix Super Market Charities, Florida Weekly, The ArtsPaper (The Coastal Star) and Flamingo magazine, and Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society is the exhibition’s community partnerSponsors for She. Her. Hers. include Ellen Liman, Florida Weekly, Palm Beach Media Group, WLRNThe ArtsPaper (The Coastal Star) and Habitat for Humanity is the exhibition’s community partner. Beyond Blossoms: The Power of Pollinators is sponsored by Ellen Liman,Florida Weekly, WLRN and Flamingo magazine.

 

For more information on upcoming events or to become a member or sponsor of the Cultural Council and its programs, please visit www.palmbeachculture.com or call (561) 471-2901.

 

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store and offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center. During the summer months and through October 31st, the Council is open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. and the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. Starting on November 1, the Council will be open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

 

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673

A photographer whose work incorporates found objects, Bertelson’s ‘Like Mother, Like Daughter’ combines self-portraiture with a variety of domestic crafts to create a feminist body of workA collection of profound photographic work about love, anger and the struggles experienced by generations of women will soon be on display in a striking art exhibition in downtown Lake Worth Beach.

The exhibition Lauren Bertelson: Like Mother, Like Daughter will take place October 6 through December 2 at the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County’s Solo Gallery at its Lake Worth Beach headquarters. Free and open to the public, exhibition hours during October are Tuesday through Friday from noon to 5 p.m., as well as Saturday, October 14 from noon to 5 p.m. In November and December, exhibition hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m.

Bertelson’s mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother have left literal and metaphorical scars in her family archive. Their photos document their struggles in wanting to be seen and appreciated for the intensive domestic labor they participated in while also displaying palpable trauma from rejection and dismissal of their accomplishments. Bertelson’s work emerges from their desires to both create and destroy, combining self-portraiture with a variety of domestic crafts to create a feminist body of work that simultaneously recognizes her matrilineage and elevates domestic work to contemporary art. Her practice is about love and anger and the transfer of these sentiments through generations of women.

“Lauren’s exhibition is particularly focused on family histories, the experiences of women in her family, and their responses to their roles as women and in the family,” said Jessica Ransom, the council’s director of artist services and the exhibition’s curator. “I love the way she incorporates found objects that are often associated with female roles into her work.”

Selected through a highly competitive application process, Bertelson is one of six Palm Beach County-based professional artists whose work was chosen by a committee for one of the Council’s coveted Solo Gallery exhibition spots. All the artists chosen this year are women, Ransom said.

“In addition to all of the Solo Gallery artists being women, all of their work responds in some respect to the fact that women artists have been systematically overlooked and minimized throughout recorded art history,” she said. “Despite this, women artists have helped shaped every era and art movement and have persevered against bias with unique perspectives and use of mediums. This group of artists continues to record their lives and experiences and make art that uniquely represents them.”

Currently based in Palm Beach Gardens, Bertelson is a photographer originally from Boulder, Colorado, who uses photography and domestic craft to explore themes of domesticity, femininity, labor, and the multigenerational transfer of these concepts.

“This work is deeply personal for me, but it can also be interpreted more broadly,” she said. “I hope that it touches people and illuminates some of the many roles and emotions seen in their own families.”

Her work has previously been featured at Light Work, Colorado Photographic Arts Center, Studio 1608, the Biblio Gallery and the Schine Student Center at Syracuse University. Bertelson was a recipient of a SOURCE Grant in Spring 2022 to pursue Like Mother, Like Daughter. With a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Photography from Syracuse University, past projects include a crochet tapestry, Eighty Seasons: A Summary, that visually represents the relationships that have been an integral part of her life, as well as a series of images As the Shadows Lengthen, that explored an 8-month bout with chronic insomnia.

Lauren Bertelson: Like Mother, Like Daughter will run from October 6 through December 2 at the Cultural Council’s headquarters in Lake Worth Beach. Exhibition hours during October are Tuesday through Friday from noon to 5 p.m., as well as Saturday, October 14 from noon to 5 p.m. In November and December, exhibition hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. Visit www.palmbeachculture.com/council-events/ for more information or to register for the opening artist reception on Thursday, October 5, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

 

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store and offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center. During the summer months and through October 31st, the Council is open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. and the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. Starting on November 1, the Council will be open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

 

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673
pr@palmbeachculture.com

The Cultural Council is currently looking for creative professionals to serve as paid ambassadors for a two-year term from 2023 to 2025The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is seeking Palm Beach County-based creative professionals who are interested in becoming Artist Ambassadors for the sector.

 

The Cultural Council is accepting applications for four creative professionals within the disciplines of dance, music, theater and literature (including poets and spoken word artists) to serve as ambassadors for a two-year term from September 15, 2023 to September 15, 2025. Each will receive a $1,000 per year stipend (made in two installments) and will be featured on the Cultural Council’s new website launching in the fall.

 

Ambassadors will research resources in their respective fields and keep the Cultural Council apprised of news, calls to artists, and other important information that can be shared with the field, as well as serve as a resource to the professionals in their respective genre. The deadline to apply is August 25, 2023, by 11:59 pm.

 

“We’re delighted to launch our inaugural Artist Ambassadors program with a specific focus on performing artists,” said Jessica Ransom, the Cultural Council’s director of artist services. “We have a lot of support for visual artists through the Cultural Council’s galleries, and we wanted to make sure that we’re also supporting our other creative professionals in as many ways as we can.”

 

As Palm Beach County’s arts agency, the Cultural Council offers free, ongoing professional development opportunities for all Palm Beach County-based creative professionals through its Institute for Cultural Advancement and strives to support artists of all genres.

 

With an estimated commitment of four hours per month, the work will include serving as a subject matter expert for the Cultural Council and as a liaison between creative professionals in the industry and cultural organizations that support their discipline. Other tasks may include creating a discipline-specific toolkit of links to articles, blogs and other resources (such as where to purchase/rent equipment, rehearsal space, practice venues, and studios) to be included on the Cultural Council’s website; organizing one Institute for Cultural Advancement workshop per year; and contributing one article on a relevant topic for the Cultural Council’s blog and social media channels per year.

 

Interested creative professionals should have at least 10 years cumulative expertise in their field; be a current Palm Beach County resident and have resided in the county for three consecutive years; and have a demonstrated biographical history that indicates a sustained pursuit of a career in their field.

 

The Artist Ambassadors will be chosen by a committee comprised of Cultural Council staff and board members and Artist Innovation Fellowship recipients.

 

To apply and for additional information, visit https://www.palmbeachculture.com/artist-news/call-for-artist-ambassadors/.

 

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store, offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center and hosts frequent events in its outdoor Project Space, offering views of the building’s iconic Martin Luther King Jr. mural by renowned Brazilian artist Eduardo Kobra. During the summer, the council is open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., as well as the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

 

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673

All-female exhibition will feature new work, photographs, videos and other artistic expressions from the six recipients of the 2022 Artist Innovation Fellowship Program
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is honoring the work of its 2022 Artist Innovation Fellowship recipients with a luminous showcase and exhibition this summer. The Cultural Council created the Artist Innovation Fellowship Program to support the creative individuals who form the core of Palm Beach County’s cultural sector. A program for professional artists across all disciplines, the 2022 fellows are Elizabeth Dimon (actor, West Palm Beach), Kianga Jinaki (visual artist, Riviera Beach), Henriett Michel (visual artist, Palm Beach Gardens), Yvette Norwood-Tiger (musician, Wellington), Shanique Scott (choreographer, South Bay), and Carin Wagner (visual artist, Palm Beach Gardens, who is also one of two 2022-2023 South Florida Cultural Consortium grantees for Palm Beach County). 

Slated for Thursday, July 20, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., the free, one-of-a-kind showcase and reception will celebrate each of the six artists’ journeys over the past year and include live performances and the chance to meet the artists. The all-female exhibition will feature new work, photographs, videos and other artistic expressions. The exhibition will remain on display in the Cultural Council’s Main Gallery through September 9.

 

“Supporting professional artists is absolutely essential to our work,” said Dave Lawrence, the Cultural Council’s president and CEO. “The Artist Innovation Fellowship program is a journey of discovery, creativity, and innovation. The fellowship offers an opportunity for artists to breathe and think outside daily constraints, and to celebrate creativity and the act of making. The showcase provides our audiences with a glimpse of that journey and the creative process.”

 

The Artist Innovation Fellowship is unique among professional development opportunities as it focuses on personal creative growth and the belief that an entire community will benefit through investments in creative individuals. The program is designed to address the pursuit of innovation in either existing avenues of creative expression or through the pursuit of new ideas and projects without the constraints of budgets or specific project outcomes.

 

“This is an opportunity for mid-career artists who are established and want to take the next step in their development,” said Jessica Ransom, the Cultural Council’s director of artist services and curator of the exhibition. “This program has provided a chance for artists to fulfill dreams that they’ve had for a while and just haven’t had the chance to pursue.”

 

The Artist Innovation Fellowship Program included funding for six $7,500 fellowships in 2022. Each fellow spent the past year exploring new ideas, new or familiar avenues of artistic expression, apprenticeships, conducting research or receiving instruction, culminating in the exhibition and performance showcase.

 

Selected by a regional panel of discipline-specific arts professionals, applicants were evaluated according to the quality of the applicant’s artistic work, the strength of their proposed fellowship activities and its relation to their work, and the intended impact on the applicant and his/her work. Fellowships were awarded to applicants who demonstrate a sustained level of accomplishment, commitment, and artistic excellence.

 

The 2022 group was preceded by Palm Beach County-based professional artists Anthony Burks, Sr. (visual artist), Amy Gross (visual artist), Isabel Gouveia (visual artist), Joshua Lubben (musician) and Donna Murray (choreographer/dancer), who were awarded inaugural fellowships when the program launched in 2020.

 

The Artist Innovation Fellowship Showcase exhibition will take place in the Cultural Council’s Main Gallery at its downtown Lake Worth Beach headquarters; summer hours are Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m., as well as the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is free. To RSVP for the July 20 opening reception, visit https://www.palmbeachculture.com/council-events/.

 

About the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County is the official support agency for arts and culture in The Palm Beaches, Florida’s Cultural Capital®. Headquartered in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. building in Downtown Lake Worth Beach, the Council presents exciting year-round exhibitions and performances featuring artists who live or work in Palm Beach County. The Council features spectacular work by Palm Beach County-based professional artisans in its Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store, offers complimentary resources for visitors in its Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Information Center and hosts frequent events in its outdoor Project Space, offering views of the building’s iconic Martin Luther King Jr. mural by renowned Brazilian artist Eduardo Kobra. During the summer, the council is open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., as well as the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. For more information and a comprehensive calendar of cultural events in The Palm Beaches, visit palmbeachculture.com.

 

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Media Contact:
Linnea Bailey (561) 713-0673
pr@palmbeachculture.com

 

Calendar item:

Exhibition: Artist Innovation Fellowship Showcase — July 20 through September 9, 2023
The Cultural Council created the Artist Innovation Fellowship Program in 2020 to honor and support the creative individuals who form the core of Palm Beach County’s cultural sector. A program for professional artists across all disciplines, this all-female exhibition will feature new work, photographs, videos and other artistic expressions. The 2022 Artist Innovation Fellows are: Elizabeth Dimon (actor, West Palm Beach); Kianga Jinaki (visual artist, Riviera Beach); Henriett Michel (visual artist, Palm Beach Gardens); Yvette Norwood-Tiger (musician, Wellington); Shanique Scott (choreographer, South Bay); and Carin Wagner (visual artist, Palm Beach Gardens, who is also one of two 2022-2023 South Florida Cultural Consortium grantees for Palm Beach County). An opening reception is slated for Thursday, July 20, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. This free public exhibition is in the Main Gallery at the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County, located in The Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. Building at 601 Lake Avenue in Lake Worth Beach. Summer hours are Tuesdays through Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., as well as the second Saturday of each month from noon to 5 p.m. Call (561) 471-2901 or visit palmbeachculture.com.