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Cofrin Gallery Archive

The Versatile Kimono: from the collection of Martin McKellar

Tuesday, Nov. 1 - Friday, Dec. 9, 2016 
The Japanese ornamented their clothing with subtle sophistication. Their exceptional techniques for figurative art allowed them to express their status, their beliefs and their hopes for the future...all on the clothes that they wore. Please join us to view a collection of Japanese kimono made for men, women, boys and girls that spans a period of 100 years. We’d love to hear what they might say to you!
Please Join us for a public reception honoring the collector on Friday, Nov. 11 from 7-9 p.m. The reception will also feature a performance by Oak Hall’s own Taiko ensemble, “Tsubasa."


Nancy Reyes Suarez was born in Cuba. She studied at the Higher Polytechnic Institute of Architecture where she studied photography and painting. Nancy has been a freelance photographer since 1993, mainly working in the areas of ballet, theater, dance, architecture and commercial photography. Her work has been published important print and digital media in Cuba and Spain. Currently she is the principal photographer for the Cuban National Ballet.

The paintings of Nancy Reyes Suarez are colorful depiction of Afro-Cuban folklore. Using vivid color and line she creates work that is similar in composition to stained glass windows. The art of Nancy Reyes Suarez has been exhibited in Cuba, France, England, Spain, and the southwestern United States. Her work is currently in the collections of art museums around the world.
We are pleased and excited to present her photography and paintings in the exhibition: CUBANISTA: THE ART OF NANCY REYES SUAREZ in the Cofrin Gallery.
Please join us for an artist reception with Nancy Reyes Suarez in the Cofrin Gallery on Friday, Jan. 6, 2017, 7-9 PM featuring SPECIAL GUEST Jessie Dominguez, her daughter and principal ballerina for the Cuban National Ballet and guest dancer for Dance Alive National Ballet Company.

CUBANISTA: THE ART OF NANCY REYES SUAREZ exhibition runs Jan. 6- Feb. 10, 2017 as part of the BULLA CUBANA art collaboration throughout the city of Gainesville. 

Kate Barnes: The Road Home
 Jan. 8 - Feb. 12, 2016

The Road Home is one we all travel in our search for the physical and spiritual places where we feel a sense of belonging. On my own life’s journey, I’ve tried to be an observant and inquisitive traveler, leaving artistic trail markers along the way as I seek unexplored pathways. I’ve always kept sketchbooks and journals to sharpen my awareness, and when I paint, I’ve tried to bring my experiences to life.
Among the many artworks that make up my life’s work have emerged intriguing themes that have developed over time: the touch of water over stone; the edge of the sea; the images left by the Ancients in sacred places; the abstractions of natural forms; the landscapes of dreams. In this collection of sketches, notebooks, and paintings, I’ve explored the road less taken, where I’ve found homelands of the heart in unexpected places.
Please join us in the Cofrin Gallery for an artists reception honoring Kate Barnes on Friday, Jan. 8 from 6-9 p.m.

August 21 - October 6, 2016
Molten glass is pulled from a glowing furnace pliable and full of potential. With simple tools and air forced through a blowpipe, colors flow and organic shapes come to life. Metal is pounded into graceful curves. Glass and metal merge to reveal the beautifully unique vision of Somewhere Glassworks
Please join us for a reception honoring the artists on Friday, Sept. 9, from 7-9 p.m. 

Join us for an all-day workshop with Artist David Edgar, on Thursday, October 29 from 9-3 p.m. There will be a lunch time gallery talk and artist reception from 11:30-12:30 p.m.

Artist David Edgar is pioneering environmentally friendly artwork made from post-consumer recyclable plastics and has exhibited his Plastiquarium artwork at over 50 museums and cultural venues across the United States and in Europe. A graduate of the prestigious Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan, Edgar previously worked as an Artist Preparator with the Imagineering division of the Walt Disney World Company and as Executive Director of the Armory Art Center in West Palm Beach, Florida. Edgar's Plastiquarium artwork is represented internationally in corporate, institutional, and notable private collections.
David and his wife Robin have published Fantastic Recycled Plastic a book on the creation of contemporary craft art made using recyclable plastics. As an experienced art educator, Edgar also teaches recycled plastic art making workshops across the US.

Learn more about David Edgar
The show runs Oct. 29-Dec. 18, 2015


Feb. 19 - March 18, 2016
Focused on the energy and spiritual essence of the landscape, Gary Borse’s award-winning work has been featured in the Florida State Capitol Building, public art, museums, art galleries, books, magazine covers and feature articles, and is included locally in the permanent art collection of The State of Florida, The University of Florida and many other prestigious collections worldwide.
"Capturing the soul, or spiritual essence and energy of the landscape is a challenge. Painting what you see and what you feel at the same time is like walking the fence. If you fall one way you will have what everyone sees, if you fall the other, you will have what everyone feels. Therefore, you must stay on the edge of the fence.I am fascinated by the Florida landscape and strive to paint it in a different way than any other artist. While I stay on the edge of the fence I can still create images that are representational, but have the essence of mystery and excitement that reality does not permit some imaginations to perceive. With powerful color vibration I try to create an image that can be seen by the soul."
Painting Plein Air for over thirty years in Florida, Peter Carolin’s style most recently resonates with the French Impressionist Movement. Peter is currently an adjunct professor at Santa Fe College, Gainesville, FL. Private collections exceed 500 paintings in over 14 states nationally, and 9 countries, internationally.
"Artists are heralds. They have something to communicate, either about the physical world around them, the conceptual/emotional world within them, or the social world among them, to criticize or celebrate, sometimes to make more noise, and sometimes to make more peace and quiet. Like modern journalists, artists may attempt to be objective, (or not), and tell stories for shock and impact, drama and even disgust. The critical artist attacks or challenges us to stop living senselessly and be more attentive and act more alive. Art may also celebrate and examine life, from a more sensitive perspective, and bring a sense of vitality, and information to the viewer, often translated as good feelings and healthier attitude. The statement may be less loud, but more detailed. As diverse as life is, it may take even more diverse angles and perspectives to understand and examine it, logically, scientifically, poetic and mystically."
Please join us in the Cofrin Gallery for an artists reception honoring Gary Borse and Peter Carolin on Friday, Feb. 19 from 6-9 p.m.


Metal Show: Forged, Poured, Welded

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Aug. 20 - Oct. 1, 2015

featuring artwork by area metal artists:

Leslie Tharp 
Juan Holbrook 
Nathan Grimes 
John Patterson 
Mark Armbrecht 
Jasper North 
Jordan Borstelmann 
Darin Hillman 
Samantha Kirkland 
Ian Skinner 
Lexi Braun 
Dave Peck 
Michael Kummer 
Kirk Sullens 
Danny Lore 
Sky Campbell 
Sarah Joy 
Rebecca Thompson 
Sean Lofton 
Kevin Dotson 
Joshua Dennard

Please join us for a reception honoring these artists and watch live Blacksmith forging demonstrations on Friday, Aug. 28, from 7-9 p.m.

Collected by Debra Trione

March 13 - April 3, 2015

The perfect world theme has inspired artists and writers for centuries. But what does it actually look like? The Garden of Eden, the Peaceable Kingdom, or Thomas Moore’s Utopia? Never-Never-Land or a UNICEF Christmas card? How do you picture your perfect world? Debra Trione asked American leaders like Nancy Pelosi, General Norman Schwarzkopf, and Neil deGrasse Tyson to answer that question in words AND in paint. Here’s what she found.
Please join us in the Cofrin Gallery for a reception and book signing
with author Debra Trione
on Friday, March 13, 2015 from 6-8 p.m.

WACOTA CLAY: The Art of Colquitt Tanner


Jan. 23 - March 6, 2015
I have always derived great satisfaction from working with my hands. I centered my first piece of clay in 1975 and fell in love with the process of creating beautiful and useful forms. My creative energy comes from many sources, most notably, from my dreams, the beautiful Florida landscape, Native American culture and spirituality and our wonderful Gainesville art community.
Please join us in the Cofrin Gallery for an artists reception and an evening of storytelling honoring the artist, Colquitt Tanner, on Friday, Jan. 23 from 6-8 p.m.

William Schaaf: Icons and Artifacts


Icons and Artifacts
Nov. 7 - Dec. 19, 2014  

Come to find out, I’ve been rubbing these art sticks together for 50 years now. I was led to this vocation, to the theme of the equine, and as time passes by me, I find that I am still enthralled at the way of it.   

What have I learned? I use my art and craft to fix myself up, to subsume myself to something larger. I have learned that I am the best artist when I serve as a midwife for that magic which comes through me. I love the mystery and live for the creative process itself, and from that, learn to see it in all things. It is that which grounds and heals me, and in that meditation I am forever grateful to travel this artist’s path.

Please join us in the Cofrin Gallery for a reception 
honoring the artist, William Schaaf 
on Friday, Nov. 7 from 7-9 p.m.

¡Celebrate the Santeros!
September 17 – October 17, 2014

The Cofrin Gallery is proud to be part of a community collaboration of exhibitions, which simultaneously celebrates an outstanding collection of Puerto Rican art! Represented are a variety of Puerto Rican art forms, most notably a collection of small wooden sculptures created in the Santos Tradition. These carved wooden Saints held tremendous historic and spiritual value for the people of Puerto Rico since the 16th century, and have been particularly important for use in rural home altars.

We are also pleased to welcome guest artists, José Luis Peña Burgos, Orlando Luque, Xavier Colón Marrero, and Eric Saunders to our gallery where these "Santeros" will demonstrate their carving processes and discuss their work on Thursday, Sept. 25 from 12:30-2:30 p.m.

Please join us for a reception honoring these artists and Mr. Puig on Friday, Sept. 26 from 5-7 p.m.

“Creative Capital: A Gathering of Innovative Artists"
March 7 – April 11, 2014

The citizens of Gainesville have gained a national reputation for their vital, creative culture. Our city is blessed with individuals in many fields whose knowledge, professionalism and innovative pursuits make up our  “Creative Class”.  This exhibition features an eclectic group of visual and performing artists who came together to share their skills and experience during the UF sponsored, “Creative Capital” workshop in Oct. 2013. Creative Capital is an organization that supports innovative and adventurous artists across the country.   
This exhibition also celebrates and recognizes these artists for their cultural contributions, which help make our community such a vibrant place to live and work.  
Please join us for a reception honoring the artists Friday, March 7, 2014, 7-9pm  
Elif Akcali - Mixed Media
Dave Becker - Music
Tony Berry - Clay
Quintina Crawford - Music
Erin Curry - Visual Art
Joan Frosch - Video
Dawn Gaietto - graphite on paper and photography
Giang L Pham - Photography
Nicole Gugliotti - Sculpture
Rob Kolhouse - Ceramics
Dylan Klempner - Mixed Media
Logan Marconi - Painting
Tony Offerle - Music
Robert Ponzio - Painting
Tiffany Rhynard - Video
Cheyenne Rudolph - Sculpture

Look Up

Look Up is a show about the sensation of flying. Kites are instruments of the wind. They are sensors that can connect us directly to our atmosphere. These are artifacts of playing, dancing, and sculpting in the sky. This work is both retrospective, and a look to the future. Showing more than 20 years of development, these original designs inspired by the natural world have evolved around Elverston's and Whiting's constant studies of the wind.
After long apprenticeships with two top kite design studios, Jordan Air Kites in Gainesville FL, and GuildWorks Flight Studio in Beverly MA,Tim Elverston met artist Ruth Whiting. Together Elverston & Whiting founded WindFire Designs, a handmade technology company and fine arts studio. Their innovations in wind arts have been recognized and shown around the globe for their beautiful styles, unique designs and refined systems that make their work possible.  
The show runs February 22 – March 22, 2013



Stetson Kennedy: A Life of Purpose

An exhibition on the life work of Stetson Kennedy is presented in collaboration with the Civic Media Center. 
Stetson Kennedy: A Life of Purpose follows the arc of Stetson’s life of accomplishment and the people that he collaborated with as he spoke truth to power. He was the author of eight books, among them Palmetto Country, Klan Unmasked, The Jim Crow Guide, Southern Exposure and After Appomattox: How the South Won the War.
He collaborated with a diverse universe of people such as Zora Neale Hurston, Woody Guthrie, Simone de Beauvoir, Jean-Paul Sarte and Alan Lomax. Kennedy was an author, folklorist, environmentalist, labor activist and human rights activist who won numerous national and international awards. He was active in all of these areas until his death in 2011 at the age of 94.
Stetson Kennedy: A Life of Purpose opens Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 at the Cofrin Arts Center from 7-9 pm. The reception features Sandra Parks, Kennedy’s widow speaking about his life, Professor Paul Ortiz and Florida folk musicians Frank Thomas, Dale Crider and blues musician Willie Green.

Soul of a People: Writing America’s Story movie screening
Join us for a screening of the Smithsonian produced movie Soul of a People: Writing America’s Story in the Edith D. Cofrin theater on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 7:00 p.m. This documentary offers a compelling window into the experience of the Great Depression and the WPA Writer’s Project.