South Florida’s top artists showcase colossal new works — including giant paintings, towering textiles, massive sculptures, and photography and glassworks 36” in size or larger — as ArtServe presents the “BIG: Big Bold Art” exhibition through Friday, November 4. A free gallery reception will be open to the public Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. “Go ‘Big’ and don’t stay home because this is not one to miss,” said ArtServe president and CEO Jaye Abbate. “We challenged our artists to think big, and they have come through with works that amaze and inspire.” “BIG” also pays big dividends as on the night of the reception, all of the work on display will be available for purchase at 15% savings, with sales supporting the individual artists and local cultural programming. “To keep it fun, the BIG theme will play out into the evening’s entertainment and other arenas during the reception,” adds Abbate. The event will also give out an Online People’s Choice Award based on popular vote, which is taking place now through Wednesday at http://www.artserve.org/online-voting. Also featured will be Goldstein Schechter Koch CPAS & Wealth Advisors Gallery, filled with paintings and mixed media arts from Catherine Wichmann. ArtServe is located at 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale, and admission to the gallery is free. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. More information is available at artserve.org or 954-462-8190.
Given our sometimes-harsh realities, we welcome a filtered overlay of something beautiful, magical, or even hilarious. Just think of how much Snapchat's puppy filter was employed during the last presidential debate. For contemporary artist Sarah Stieber, amplified, popping color palettes (à la Lisa Frank) and saturated hues raise her characters off the canvas. Stieber's latest painting series, Glow With the Flow, features bold and playful characters in glimmering waterscapes populated by mylar balloons, glitter, and gemstones. Not only do these elements give texture to her pieces, but Steiber's hope is that they also reflect the negativity, letting in room for the good in life. It's what she calls "wishful seeing," where unexpected beauty can often be hiding right in front of us. See Stieber's works in the exhibit "Glow With the Flow" at Parisian lounge Le Rendez-Vous (221 Datura St., West Palm Beach) Friday from 7 to 10 p.m. Complimentary drinks, macarons, and French pastries will round out the free affair. Call 561-273-5441 or visit sarahstieber.com. Free tickets are available at sarahstiebersoloshow.eventbrite.com.
It's hard to believe Miami Beach was once a no-man's land of cheap rent, sun-drenched weirdness framed by Hasidism, coked-out kids chasing someone else's dreams, and the hovering shadow of the Angel of Death's wings over a forgotten grandparent. Today's South Beach is the zonked-out swill of a developer's vomitorium — a soulless shell of overpriced nothing. That old Miami Beach was a scary place — an island visited on a whim with the security of the mainland nearby. Naturally, the inhabitants then were colorful characters, and as modern South Florida's original fringe arts scene, South Beach was home to many artists who've achieved varying degrees of success since the tempestuous days of the early '80s. Don Shearer, known for his HIV-positive blood paintings, was the first resident of the Española Way Art Center, and in the couple of years he worked on the Beach, he left an indelible mark on the nascent scene. As a companion to his retrospective at the Box Gallery, the "Unofficial Mayor of Miami Beach" Louis Canales, Pulitzer Prize-winning journo and author Liz Balmaseda, tastemaker Manny Hernandez, and curator Sandra Schulman will present "Art and Culture of the South Beach Renaissance: The American Riviera," bearing witness and providing context to a time in South Florida that was the polar opposite of today's reality. Tales and facts are sure to entertain and astonish. Outlandish? Maybe. Factual? More than likely. The exhibition will open at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Box Gallery (811-B Belvedere Road, West Palm Beach). Tickets cost $10. Call 786-521-1199 or visit theboxgallery.info.
Versatile singer-actress Avery Sommers has appeared in Broadway productions of musicals like Ain’t Misbehavin’ and Showboat, but her home remains South Florida. She’s been a linchpin of the tri-county theater for decades, usually in Palm Beach County: She first appeared at West Palm Beach’s Kravis Center nearly 20 years ago in a production of Chicago, and her cabaret sets have delighted audiences at Maltz Jupiter Theatre and Palm Beach’s Colony Theater, where she’s enjoyed frequent bookings since 2008. Most recently, she portrayed pioneering blues siren Bessie Smith at Arts Garage’s sensational musical The Devil’s Music in Delray Beach, allowing audiences to discover the vulnerability behind the boisterous, brassy star. It’s about time she commuted south, and the Tennis Club’s monthly Cabaret du Jour series has offered her just the opportunity. With accompanist Phil Hinton tinkling the ivories, Sommers will perform a cabaret set of her favorite soul, pop and musical-theater traditions: “Feeling Good,” “Without a Song,” “Just One of the Those Things” and the tune that gives this performance its name, “I Love Being Here With You.” We think the feeling will be mutual. Check out her set at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Tennis Club, located at 600 Tennis Club Dr. in Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $20 with a two-drink minimum. For information, call 954-547-2819 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You hear that a craft fair is being held at Due South Brewing, and you automatically think beer. But that's not quite accurate. Other than being the purveyor of delicious local craft suds, the brewery is holding an arts and crafts fair featuring more than a dozen local artists and crafters who will display their wares, including pottery, jewelry, photography, and wood crafts. And there will be food. Piggy's BBQ & Seafood will be onsite all day. You'll still be able to sip beer, of course. Due South Brewing will keep its regular tour schedule at 1 p.m. for a free tour and then at 2 p.m. for a $10 VIP tour and tasting. Reservations for tours are suggested. The craft fair will be held Saturday from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at Due South Brewing Company (2900 High Ridge Rd., Boynton Beach). It's a free indoor event that will be held rain or shine. Call 561-463-2337 or visit duesouthbrewing.com.