Art Gallery 21 will be closed from July 9 til September 22, 2018 for building maintenance and upgrades. We will be working behind the scenes to get ready for the new season which kicks off with the 7th Annual Island City Juried Art Exhibition to be unveiled on Saturday, September 29 at 7 PM. Rules & Entry Form available here.

Hello, September!

artful paint brushes sept2016 calendar

Art Gallery 21 will kick off its new “season” with our fifth annual Island City Juried Art Exhibition this month! Art intake will take place on Saturday, the 24th, and the Rules & Entry Form are available here for download for those artists interested in entering. Cash prizes and a Winner’s Show in 2017!

Join us at 7 PM on Friday, the 30th, for the Art Opening & Awards Ceremony! We’ll have refreshments, lots and lots of art, and you’ll be able to meet the artists and share the vibe!

Art Gallery 21 is located in the former Woman’s Club of Wilton Manors at 600 NE 21 Court, next the Hagen Park volleyball court. You can’t miss it! Plenty of parking, too!


Around here …

It’s hard to believe that it’s been four years since Robert Gross, Celia Diaz and a group of devoted artists first hung art in the Woman’s Club of Wilton Manors! We have experienced a slew of successful art shows over these four years and we have made so many new friends along the way that share the joy of art!  The big question now has become, “How can we keep that going?”

In an effort to address sustainability for the gallery, I sought advice from a successful local businessman, Nick Berry. He provided us with a matching grant in January this year which allowed us to raise the $400 we needed to obtain 501(c)(3) status with the Internal Revenue Service. In the course of our meeting that December day, he asked if we had ever thought about using the Woman’s Club as the City’s “official” Visitor’s Center. He spoke of a physical place where visitor’s could go to and receive information about Wilton Manors’ businesses, parks and events. He went on to offer ideas about how to generate revenue that would keep the Visitor’s Center going over time. I thought Nick’s idea was a stroke of genius! What could be more warm and welcoming than a neighborhood art gallery in a historic mid-century modern building located in the heart of the arts and entertainment district of the City?

I wasted no time reaching out to the City Manager, Leigh Ann Henderson. If the City was  interested in such a venture, there was hope the gallery could go on! We were in need of a way to expand our hours of operation to maximize exposure for the artists and to fully participate as a small business, albeit a nonprofit organization. I was so grateful when Ms. Henderson embraced the idea and stated that she would inform her department heads and seek their support as well. It seemed we were on our way!

And, so, it is that I write this blog post to share with you what comes next.

Each year since 2011 when ownership of the building was transferred to the City of Wilton Manors, the Leisure Services Department has included a small amount of money in their budget for improvements to the building. The first couple of years, that money was spent to repair the roof and air conditioning system, purchase hurricane shutters and bring the building into compliance with current fire code and ADA requirements. Last year, they upgraded the electrical system which allowed for the installation of signage and track lighting for the gallery. THIS was a significant achievement for the gallery and created an environment of confidence for the many volunteers involved in this project. The City had demonstrated that they were intent on working with artists in a meaningful way.

Art Gallery 21 will be “dark” this summer, providing the City with the time needed for the next capital improvements project at the Woman’s Club … the redesign of the kitchen and storage areas. The groups that use the building on a regular basis, like the yoga classes and the Depression Era Glass Club as well as the gallery, are all in need of adequate storage. The kitchen itself, while minimally functional, is outdated and unappealing to building rental prospects. It’s been an honor that City staff have included the gallery in conversations and planning sessions since the idea for the Visitor’s Center emerged. They are as enthusiastic and excited as we are!

We are looking towards a late September/early October grand opening of the Visitor’s Center. While construction is in progress, we will be working to establish a business plan, identify potential volunteer opportunities and to develop a network of businesses and cultural organizations that could benefit from participation in the Visitor’s Center. It is truly a “work in progress” and I know I speak for all the artists when I say, “Thank You to the City for all the support!” If what we do here is successful, Art Gallery 21 will be able to increase its hours of operation and add economic and cultural value to the community in new ways. We will be able to share the joy of art with visitors AND residents and provide additional cultural opportunities to all.


Anyone interested in being a part of the development process for the “official” Wilton Manors Visitor’s Center, contact us! We are open to ideas and suggestions that will lead to success! Thanks for another great season of art and artists!

juried competition …

Just out of curiosity, I searched Wikipedia for “juried competition” and learned some very interesting things about their history.

The earliest juried competitions were held in Greece, under Aeschylus and his successors. During the Middle Ages in 1441, a public poetry competition called the Certame Coronario was held in Florence with the intention of proving that the spoken Italian language was not inferior to Latin. (Interesting reason for a juried competition, huh? LOL!)

Before the advent of the Internet, national and international juried competitions were (and still are) widely advertised in trade journals, newspapers and magazines, with jurists selected from among the artistic elite. Competitions of visual works accepted photographic slides from competitors to represent the work entered because of the cost-prohibitive nature of sending and receiving whole artworks. After judging, only the selected works were sent on for public viewing if the competition included such a venue for the selected works. 

Since the advent of the Internet, many competitions for visual works began accepting entries in digital form as well as slide form. The growth of the Internet also saw service firms appear offering organizational tools for juried competitions allowing for such conveniences as online storage and access of digital images. Some juried art competitions exist entirely online.

11-2015 bob & celia showThis Saturday, we will be accepting entries for our fourth annual Island City Juried Art Competition/Exhibit. We’re a little old fashioned in the way we operate. We’ve been advertising it in local publications, in Wilton Manors’ “official” city newsletter, Town Crier, and, of course, on our Facebook page. A couple of local art teachers have shared the information with their students and the Rules & Entry Form are available here on our web site. Now, we wait to see how many people come to Art Gallery 21 on Saturday to bring their art for consideration.

There IS a certain amount of anxiety involved in these final days leading up to the art intake. Will we get at least 25 people? What if we get 50? We have limited space, so that might mean we have to reject (dare I use that word) some artists. We don’t want to reject anyone! And, what about the weather? Sometimes people won’t come out for an event if the weather is crummy, so there’s anxiety about that, too!

The anticipation is the best part of doing the juried art competition! What new artists will we discover? And, oh! The new people we might meet! That’s the best kind of anticipation! Of course, we love seeing our long-time artist friends, too, so, it has that ‘home week’ quality as well!

So much excitement! Only a couple days to go!

Wish us luck!

NOTE: Art intake is Saturday, February 6 from 12 Noon until 3 PM. The winners will be announced at an art social on Friday, February 12 beginning at 7 PM. Cash prizes and ribbons will be awarded and the three winning artists will have their own show March 18 to April 8.

The Art of Collaborative Art

box of trees
One of the “box project” boxes, shot with a cell phone camera.

Art Gallery 21 is quite pleased to bring this exhibit to the community. It’s not quite like other art exhibitions. Oh, it’s very artsy fartsy. There’s lots of whimsy in the shared memorabilia, but, there is also a shared energy in the work that was curated by three talented women who call themselves “6 Hands Collaborative.” Deborah Gregg, Janet Gold and Andrea Huffman provide the six hands and these hands come with lots of teaching experience in the field of fine art. They seem to thrive on the coming together of different folks … their energy, their vision, their point of view … and like cosmic velcro, they inspire each other again and again.

Friday evening at 7 PM we will be unveiling the exhibit with an art social where you can meet the artists. There is a “box project” that’s alluring. There is a carefully curated collection of 25 small boxes, each created by a different artist, and the boxes tell different stories, expressing varied points of view. It will be fun to scrutinize each one and see what mystery lies within!

Art Gallery 21 is located at 600 NE 21 Court, just east of Wilton Drive. We’ll look forward to seeing you! Or, maybe, meeting you for the first time!


2015 in review is our “website,” started in 2015 via a learn as you go process! LOL! It began with the blog and, as our web skills grew, so did It now functions more like a website with the blog, where we can share what’s happening at Art Gallery 21, and the addition of menu items that includes a place for folks to sign up for a workshop and artists can download the rules and entry form for our juried show in February.

In today’s world, having an online presence appears to be essential to overall success of any enterprise. We are still learning, and, we hope you’ll follow along with us. Who knows? You might learn something, too! The WordPress report is interesting to us, and we thought it might be of interest to some of our readers! We’re looking forward to an exciting New Year at Art Gallery 21 and it will be fun to compare the data at the end of next year to see how much we have grown! 2016 is bringing much needed improvements to the Woman’s Club building and we’ve made some new friends that we hope will be sharing their talent with us! We wish you, reader, a Happy New Year! May it be filled with art!

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog at

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 710 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 12 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.