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Art Show tells ‘Untold Stories’

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In the vast and exciting world of the arts, every artistic masterwork tells a unique story. Now, coming this week at the Brooksville Gallery 201, guests will witness the stirring visual representations of stories untold–and of people only now being granted their opportunity to shine. The Brooksville Gallery 201 presents “Untold Stories,” opening January 13, 2023, at the gallery, 201 Howell Ave, Brooksville.

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This show, set to run from January 13, 2023, through March 24, 2023, tells stories traditionally omitted from historical chronicles. “The show is about diversity, about black history,” said Gallery Coordinator Pedram Moghaddam. “Above all, this is about their stories.”

Amidst the beauty of the artwork presented will be a compelling statement about learning from the past. Moghaddam shared, “We can’t deny or censor history. We can look at how far we have come while still admitting that–in some ways–not much has changed.”

Also, in the interest of diversity, Moghaddam and gallery organizers have cast the net far and wide in engaging with artists from as far away as New York and Ukraine–and from as nearby as Hernando and Pasco counties. The themes you’ll see at the gallery will range from life in Africa to famous figures in black history; media will include photographs, watercolors, oils, sculptures, and more.

“Untold Stories” is hosted in conjunction with the Hernando County Fine Arts Council, where Moghaddam now presides as the vice chair. “In our joint efforts to reach out to artists in Brooksville and beyond,” said Moghaddam. “A show about diversity is the ideal way to begin.”

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Allisa Babor, the newly appointed chairperson of the Hernando County Fine Arts Council, agrees. She stated, “As the theme states, this show was created with the means to honor Black History Month in a more significant way by sharing these stories in Brooksville and beyond.

Babor sees a bright and beautiful future ahead for the Hernando arts scene. “Pedram does an incredible job preparing for the shows, and we are lucky to work beside him at Brooksville Gallery 201. We value our partnership with the City of Brooksville and look forward to strengthening our relationship with even more projects, like our newly established ‘Art on Fire, ’ which is also done in partnership with the city and the Brooksville Fire Department.”

Also enthused about “Untold Stories” are participating artists, including multifaceted multimedia Spring Hill Artist Janelle Ferber, who has submitted a colorful, introspective piece for the show. “This is my first time participating in an art exhibit,” Ferber stated. “As they say, a picture says 1,000 words, and this exhibit strives to tell so many stories, bringing them to the surface. It feels wonderful to be a part of this.”

Also participating is Brooksville Artist Yolanda Barreto, who has submitted a pair of mixed-media pieces to the show; works of oils, acrylics, and fabrics depicting exotic subjects that Barreto discovered during an international cruise. Subjects range from a drummer to basket carriers in distant lands. “As I learn more and more about these people’s lives and why they do things, I love telling their stories. There are so many untold stories in history,” stated Barreto.

Award-winning Spring Hill Photographer Joan LoBianco submitted an array of glistening, tropical photos for the exhibit–including a candid shot of a child Civil War reenactor. Joan shared, “As a teacher, I love anything to do with kids. And as a fan of reenactments, I love looking into the lives of the reenactors and their characters.”

Above all, LoBianco acknowledges the sheer power of artistic storytelling. “If we don’t learn from history,” she said. “It is doomed to repeat itself. That’s why I’m so excited to be a part of this powerful exhibit.”

Artist Giuseppe Solito contributes a portrait of a legend to this exhibit.
“I’m from Italy. I chose to make the portrait of Jean Michel Basquait because he is one of the most important American painters of pop art. His beginning started from living on the streets to become one of the best artists,” he said. “The composition of my painting is his portrait in a normal position, with a paintbrush in the hand to make what he loves to do, Art. And the artwork behind him is one of his paintings named Plato, his reflection on history. In my work, I always use the culture of fashion. As you can see, the style is from the 80s.”

“I am proud and honored to be part of the Brooksville art gallery because I found people to believe in art, culture,” said Solito. “They give opportunities to artists to discover a new theme. I am honored to be part of the creativity in the community.”

Artist, Photographer, and Gallery Owner Tana Brackins of Lutz contributed a few samples of her polished black and white photography to the exhibit. These include shots depicting a saxophone player in Central Park and a stately lady in the Dominican Republic who lived to the age of 106.

“All of the photos convey a different feeling, a spectrum, and variety,” said Brackins. “Each photo conveys an emotion.”

Another photographer featured in Untold Stories, Diane Terry, submitted two images of a music legend. Terry Lutz has met and photographed superstars that range from Sting to U2.

“I had the opportunity to meet Jimi (Hendrix), and though I didn’t know him well, he seemed a most unique man,” said Terry. “I feel this image typifies him at his relaxed best. It captures his true spirit of being comfortable, unassuming, and while not overtly happy, a contented man.”

Terry felt a deep and powerful connection to her subject. Terry continued, “For me, in this image of Jimi (blue), there are numerous emotions he’s feeling, sharing, and questioning. These emotions are in many of us. He follows me in my thoughts, and I can relate to feelings that can be shared. He’s saying, ‘you’re looking at me, and I see you.’”

“Because we are all connected.”

To see the art of “Untold Stories,” attend the opening reception at 6 pm on January 13, 2023. For questions and comments, email [email protected] or call 352-540-3810 X-37168.

Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey is a features journalist and author who is the winner of Florida Press Association honors and a certificate of appreciation from LINCS (Family Support Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force) and Sunrise Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center for her newspaper coverage of these issues. She graduated cum laude from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., with a journalism major and English/sociology minor, and previously wrote for publications that include the Pasco editions of The Tampa Tribune and Tampa Bay Times. A native of Indiana, she lives in Florida.
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