Big Bend Cares raises money through Artopia

Tallahassee Democrat Published 5:14 p.m. ET June 26, 2017 | Updated 5:16 p.m. ET June 26, 2017 The auction is silent but the impact of Artopia 2017 is immense. Local and regional artists donate their artwork, including a few signed and numbered limited editions. Money raised from the annual event held at the Tucker Civic Center on Saturday benefits Big Bend Cares. The Tallahassee-based nonprofit provides education and comprehensive support to people infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS, serving Gadsden, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Franklin, Taylor, and Wakulla Counties. Artist Torrey Ella, 20, crafts wire sculptures while attendees of Artopia 2017 file in and out of the venue. (Photo: CD Davidson-Hiers/...

Artopia 2017

Artopia is a charity art fundraising event that benefits Big Bend Cares. Over 300 pieces of art in all mediums: paintings, sculptures, jewelry, and more.

Meet an Artopian – Kellie Martin

Who would you consider you biggest inspiration? In the beginning of early age that I’ve been admire Salvador Dali for his surreal works, and especially his melting clock is that what I am usually use this symbolic as my battling anxiety and my lifetime hate and love relationship with the time. Daniel Katz-Hernandez, my art friend and former classmate in mural class at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. I admire his figure bodies drawing and graffiti/ mural paintings. He have a mad skill in his art. Wendy Oritz (for her higher spiritual surreal power and reflections of melancholy in the forms), and Stef Azevedo (for her empowering strength towards womyn, and her glacatic fierceness.) What is your favorite color? It is a possible for me to pick ONE color.  I will tell you what my favorite colors are; Black, Purple, Turquoise, Dark Lavender and maroon.  How has art changed your life? The more time you spend with art, the more it improves your focus. Looking at art is a form of meditation and the more you do it, the longer you can focus. It’s like working out muscles in your body. The more you work out, the stronger you get, the longer your endurance and greater your productivity. It is a mediation for me and helps me to get through my daily struggles. It is reminds that I can overcome with everything. What is the scariest movie you have ever seen? I am a huge horror movie fan, but the movie called, “The Conjuring 2” gave a really terrifying nightmare while I was at one of my friend’s gay...

Meet an Artopian: Dean Gioia

When did you first fall in love with creating art? 8th grade. Art class. Suddenly there was a voice for all the mystical feelings floating in me since early childhood.  What can new artists do to help themselves start their own journey? Listen to your own voice. Do what is important to you (and you know). Then push it out there. Show it.  Dogs or cats? Had many of both. Loved them all. Late in life… leaning dogs.  If you could paint a book or album cover, what would it be? I have done many covers For albums and books. Would like to do one for Pat Metheny. But. Probably won’t. Oh well.  How has helping others impacted your life? It reminds me to let go of my self absorption, an affliction that haunts many artist.  Learn more about Dean’s work at his...