by David Warner
Luxury Living Tampa Bay
A to Z: The Ultimate Luxury Lifestyles List is duPont Registry Tampa Bay‘s annual compendium of the best our region has to offer. Each year we choose a different set of categories and then select businesses that are top-of-the-line in each category. This year: Art to Zinfandel (and everything luxurious in between).
Looking for art that’s thoughtful, moving or just plain gorgeous? Here’s where to look.
GALLERIES: Chad Mize made his mark as one of St. Pete’s top muralists and as the creator of the ubiquitous “Paris London Tokyo St. Pete” t-shirt. His MIZE Gallery in downtown St. Pete is tops for creative curating, affordability and packed-to-the-rafters opening receptions. CASS Contemporary in South Tampa has a similarly up-to-the-minute vibe, with an emphasis on haute street art from around the world. Syd Entel Galleries/Susan Benjamin Glass is a family-operated gallery complex in Safety Harbor with deep roots in the local arts scene; ARTicles/Leslie Curran Galleries in St. Pete’s EDGE District, owned by one of St. Pete’s pioneering arts supporters, is a hot spot for emerging and mid-career artists; the Gallery at Creative Pinellas is a hidden gem in Largo’s Pinewood Cultural Park; and Tempus Projects taps into the cutting-edge attitude of Tampa’s burgeoning Seminole Heights neighborhood.
MUSEUMS: As the Tampa Museum of Art enters its 100th anniversary year in 2020, look for eye-opening surveys of its permanent collection. Across the bay, the Museum of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg is as lively as ever, with shows on self-taught artists and origami. (Plus, there’s one of the treats of summertime, the MFA’s Marly Music Series.) The Dalí is entering the world of augmented reality with its Visual Magic show (and nowadays you can actually talk to Dalí himself via the miracle of technology). The museum with the most stunning interior in the Bay area, the James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art, is home to a fascinating collection that explores the Western frontier and Native American heritage. Another recent arrival on the scene, the Imagine Museum, confirms St. Pete’s status as a major center of glass art. And downtown Tampa’s iconic “Cube” building is an exquisite setting for the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts’ provocative exhibitions.
ART CENTERS: Beehives of art activity, the Dunedin Fine Art Center, the Morean Arts Center (which includes the Chihuly Collection) and the ArtsXchange in the Warehouse Arts District hold stimulating exhibitions, host classes and workshops, and enrich the cultural life of their communities.
STORAGE and TRANSPORT: If your visits to these A-list local arts emporia stir the urge to buy and buy some more, you’re going to need A-list assistance in transporting and storing your new artworks. Enter City-Wide Self Storage & Commercial Services, which combines expertise and elegance in a climate-controlled warehouse with the ability to receive and store anything from Portuguese tile to artwork from Africa, plus a nicely appointed showroom and a team of uniformed storage “valets.”