Art & Culture Scene

Art & Culture Scene


International influences, a laid-back atmosphere and unrivaled natural beauty have made the Florida Keys and Key West a magnet for creative spirits. The vibrant art scene here is constantly evolving and you’ll find numerous local galleries from Key West to Key Largo, as well as many cultural and performing arts venues.
Combine all of this with the Keys’ rich history, diverse culture and beautiful tropical locale, it’s no wonder that this small slice of paradise is now considered a world-class destination.

GALLERIES

Art On Duval Key West
A Procaccini Gallery

714 Duval St
Key West, Fl 33040
305-741-7001; ArtOnDuval.com
Showcasing the masterworks of Christian Bergeron
Key West’s premier Art Gallery showcases beautiful originals and limited edition works of art created by both local and international artists, including Canadian-born Christian Bergeron. Bergeron’s sumptuous Key West scenes, sea and landscapes reflect his unique classic or prismatic style that captures the light like no other. Renowned for the master use of his pallet knife and vibrant colors, Bergeron also exhibits throughout Canada, in Paris, Kennebunkport, and Boston. Art On Duval Key West will be hosting a series of shows to meet Bergeron and other artists throughout the season.

Gallery On Greene
600 Greene St
Key West, Fl 33040
305-294-1669; galleryongreene.com
Open Daily 10am-6pm
Key West’s Premier Art Gallery
“Miami has Art Basel; Key West has the Gallery on Greene.” This premier gallery showcases a mind-blowing collection of authentic, historic, museum-quality regional art. Gallery Director, Nance Frank, is a powerhouse curator and handpicks works from 37 listed artists including Pulitzer Prize-winners Jeff MacNelly and Annie Dillard; legendary painters and sculptors, Mario Sanchez and Suzie DePoo; master impressionist, Peter Vey and many other highly acclaimed Key West names. The works here span a wide variety of mediums and attract both casual buyers and serious art collectors. Frank also arranges art tours to Cuba.

Key West Art Center & Gallery
301 Front St
Key West, Fl 33040
305-294-1241; keywestartcenter.com
Open Daily 10am — 5pm
Home for Local Art & Artists
Key West’s oldest art gallery is a popular forum for local artists who showcase a variety of styles that capture the colors and mood of Key West. The Center also produces two of Key West’s biggest art events, including the upcoming Old Island Days Art Festival on February 22 – 23. Takes place from 10 – 5pm on Whitehead and Caroline Streets.

The Studios of Key West
533 Eaton St
Key West, Fl 33041
305-296-0458; tskw.org
Open Tu-Sa 10am — 4pm
Live The Creative Life
TSKW stages an extraordinary line-up of contemporary art and rotating gallery ex-hibits, workshops, classes, and performances and also provides in-house residency opportunities for artists worldwide. Many world-renowned artists, as well as Pulitzer Prize-winning authors, unite with local audiences and art practitioners at all stages of their creative careers. Be sure to check out their website for upcoming events and late-breaking updates.

ART OPENINGS

February 6 – 27
Coastlines
Key West: Cristiane Mohallem, Isabelle Hayeur, Dimitra Skandali are a trio of internationally recognized artists who reflect on the delicate balance of flora, fauna, and humanity that share the space where ocean meets land. Opens on Thur, Feb 6 from 6 – 8pm at The Studios of Key West, 533 Eaton St. Info: 305-296-0458; tskw.org.

February 6 – 27
Atmospheric Conditions
Key West: Lynne Bentley-Kemp captures the water and sky surrounding her home each morning. Here she culls a few hundred images from the thousands she’s collected into a photographic installation that forms its own atmosphere. See her amazing work at The Studios of Key West, 533 Eaton St. Info: 305-296-0458; tskw.org.

February 15
Peter Vey

Key West: Peter Vey’s poetic journal of canvases exude lush floral details, formal architectural patterns, and intricate, almost abstract flowery geometric forms. Catch his show from 5 – 8pm at The Gallery On Greene, 606 Greene St, Key West. Info: 305-294-1669; galleryongreene.com.

February 22
Priscilla Coote

Key West: Vignetting, lens flare, and color shifts are some of Pricilla Coote’s favorite tools and quite useful in the creation of mood. See her work from 5 – 8pm at The Gallery On Greene, 606 Greene St, Key West. Info: 305-294-1669; galleryongreene.com.

March 5 – 26
Familla: Fabelo & Sons

Key West: Roberto Fabelo is among Cuba’s most revered and prolific artists, known for large scale paintings and sculptures that are sensual, surreal and haunting. For the first time, he exhibits alongside his classically trained sons, Roberto and Gabriel, both burgeoning art stars in their own right. Opens on Thursday, March 5 from 6 – 8pm at The Studios of Key West, 533 Eaton St. Info: 305-296-0458; tskw.org.

March 5 – 26
The School of Mario Sanchez

Key West: With his distinctive paintings of old Key West scenes, Key West Folk Art legend, Mario Sanchez passed down a tradition that lives on today. This amazing exhibit showcases the work of Wayne Garcia, Danny Roberts, Danny Soldano, and Andy Thurber. Takes place at The Studios of Key West, 533 Eaton St. Info: 305-296-0458; tskw.org.

March 7
Mike Rooney

Key West: Rooney’s Inspiration comes from The Cape Cod School of Art, America’s first outdoor school of figure painting, founded in Provincetown in1898. Rooney’s subject matter varies, but the theme is capturing what he loves the most, water, boats, and the beach. Takes place from 5 – 7pm at The Gallery On Greene, 606 Greene St, Key West. Info: 305-294-1669; galleryongreene.com.

March 14
Plein Air Key West with John Clayton

Key West: This all-inclusive, paint-on-location event features Master Impressionist, John Clayton, of the acclaimed Cape School of Art, who will help you understand the landscape through light and color. Pre-registration and Welcome Party on Friday, March 13 at 4pm where Clayton will create a demo to get you ready and excited to paint plein air. Paintings will be displayed through March 20 at the Key West Art Center & Gallery, 301 Front St. Info: 305-294-1241; keywestartcenter.com.

March 21
Mike Marrero

Key West: An award-winning photographer, playwright, and film & theatrical director, Key West native, Mike Marrero has a sharp eye for both the micro and the macro. He has dealt with the volatile and the delicate always finding the compassion, humor and humanity of his subjects. Takes place from 5 – 8pm at The Gallery On Greene, 606 Greene St, Key West. Info: 305-294-1669; galleryongreene.com.

April 2 – 30
Liminal

Key West: Amanda Church, Paula De Luccia, Beth Kaminstein, Leslie Parke, and Lauren Olitski are five female artists who had connections to Bennington College in the ‘60s and ‘70s and also, more recently, to the Florida Keys. As essentially abstract artists, they share a relationship with a common core of a visual language. The opening show on Thurs, April 2, from 6 – 8pm. Takes place at The Studios of Key West, 533 Eaton St. Info: 305-296-0458; tskw.org.

MUSEUMS

East Martello Museum & Gallery
3301 South Roosevelt Blvd
Key West, FL 33040
305-296-3913; kwahs.com
Open Daily 9:30am — 5pm
Home Of Robert The Haunted Doll
Built in 1862 by the US Army to protect Key West’s Ft. Zachary Taylor from Con-federate attack, this historic military fort is filled with unique artifacts and memora-bilia. You can tour the grounds and see displays of Florida Keys’ history, meet Rob-ert, the haunted doll, and view junkyard sculptures by Stanley Papio and the paint-ed wooden carvings of acclaimed artist Mario Sanchez.

Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum
907 Whitehead Street
Key West, FL 33040
305-294-1136; hemingwayhome.com
Open Daily 9am-5pm
Retrace The Footsteps Of Hemingway
A registered Historic Landmark and one of Key West’s most historic and unique legacies where the late Nobel Prize winner, Ernest Hemingway was motivated to write some of his best works including “To Have and Have Not,” a novel about Key West during the Great Depression. Take a leisurely stroll through his studio, home, and gardens and meet some furry descendants of Hemingway’s legendary six-toed cat.

Florida Keys History & Discovery Center
On the Property of the Islander Resort
MM 82 Oceanside
Islamorada, Fl 33036
305-922-2237; keysdiscovery.com
Open W – Su 10am — 5pm
Where the “Old Keys” Come to Life
This fascinating educational attraction encapsulates what living in the “Old Keys” was really like through a series of engaging exhibits that include the infamous Labor Day Hurricane of 1935, Henry Flagler’s Railroad, the Overseas Highway, legendary anglers and fishing guides along with a host of other special displays.

Key West Custom House
281 Front Street
Key West, FL 33040
305-295-6616; kwahs.org
Open Daily 9:30am — 4:30pm
National Landmark & Museum
Originally home to the island’s customs office, postal service, and district courts, this
architectural marvel was built to keep pace with the increasing population and wealth
generated by Key West’s lucrative trade routes and maritime industries. Today, this beautifully restored national landmark is home to an award-winning museum and the official headquarters of the Key West Art & Historical Society.

Key West Lighthouse & Keeper’s Quarters
938 Whitehead Street
Key West, FL 33040
305-294-0012; kwahs.org
Open Daily 9:30am — 4:30pm
A Tribute To Key West’s Maritime Heritage
Originally “manned” by a woman Keeper when it opened in 1848, the Key West Lighthouse is now one of the island’s most iconic attractions where you can walk up 88 steps to the top of the light for a birds-eye view of Key West and explore the belongings, photographs, and words of the lighthouse Keepers who bravely kept the light burning through threats of war and weather.

Mel Fisher Maritime Museum
200 Greene Street
KeyWest, FL 33040
305-294-2633; melfisher.org
Open M – Su 8:30am – 5pm;
Sa & Su 9:30 am – 5 pm
A Bounty Of Shipwreck Treasures
The legendary Mel Fisher and his team of treasure hunters come to life at this fas-cinating maritime museum that displays a bounty of precious loot salvaged from the Spanish Galleon, Atocha, which sunk off of Key West over 400 years ago. Treasure coins, gold, emeralds, swords, and more are all on display here, along with special historical exhibits that explore maritime history.

Oldest House Museum
322 Duval St
Key West, FL 33040
305-294-9501; oldesthousemuseum.com
Open 10am — 4pm; Closed Weds & Sun
Built in 1829, Key West’s oldest house was home to the wrecker Captain Francis B. Watlington, his wife Emeline, and their nine daughters. The former estate includes three buildings: the main house, the kitchen house, and the exhibit pavilion. The property showcases a treasure trove of family portraits, original furnishings, many maritime artifacts, and a gift shop, as well as works by Key West’s famous Cuban-American Folk Artist, Mario Sanchez. In the rear of the house is the spacious, peaceful “Lily’s Garden,” where you can see the only surviving Cook House in South Florida.

Truman Little White House
111 Front Street
Key West, Fl 33040
305-294-9988; trumanlittlewhitehouse.com
Open M-Su 9am – 5pm;
Guided Tours until 4:30pm
Florida’s Only Presidential Site
Originally constructed in 1890 as naval officers housing, this historical compound became the winter White House for President Harry S. Truman, who spent 175 days of his Presidency here from 1946 to 1952. It has also been used by six other Presidents including William Howard Taft, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. Tours take place every 15 – 20 minutes throughout the day.

Key West Turtle Museum
200 Margaret Street
Key West, Fl 33040
305-294-0209; keywestturtlemuseum.org
Open Th-Sa 11am – 5pm
A Piece of Key West History
Located next to a former turtle cannery building, this former fish house is now home to the Key West Turtle Museum. Here you can explore the history of the green sea turtle fishing industry and see a burgeoning collection of archeological objects and turtle bones. Opened by Mel Fisher Maritime Museum, the Turtle Museum focuses on turtle conservation efforts, including promoting awareness, protecting habits, and tagging for research and study.

FOOTLIGHTS

The Florida Keys and Key West are home to a thriving performing arts community that stages world class theater, dance and concert productions from Key West to Key Largo. Historical luminaries including playwright Tennessee Williams, novelist, Ernest Hemingway and poet Robert Frost, created some of their best works here and that tradition continues today as more and more writers, artists, musicians, dancers and performers flock to our small piece of paradise from all over the world.

The Aquanettes: Reality Is A Drag
Key West: Prepare yourself for some amazing costumes, great music and lots of laughs when the world famous Aquanettes take to the stage. This outrageous troupe of lip-synching, wise-cracking drag queens prance, dance, shimmy and shake to the hoots and howls of a packed house. No two shows are ever the same so you never know what’s going to happen. FYI: Bring lots of dollar bills for tipping the performers — the more you tip, the more they play. Showtimes: Sun – Weds at 9pm; Th at 7 & 9pm; Fri & Sat at 7, 9 &11pm. Reservations recommended. See them at Aqua Nightclub, 711 Duval St., Key West. Info: 305-294-0555; aquakeywest.com.

Christopher Peterson’s Eyecons
Key West: Often compared to the legendary Jim Baily, master of impersonations, Christopher Peterson is, without a doubt, one of North America’s foremost female impressionists – both visually and vocally. His hit show, EYECONS, is one of the hottest tickets in town and you’ll be totally amazed by the way he transforms himself into more than a dozen famous women right before your very eyes with the help of his “magic closet.” Catch him in the Crystal Room Cabaret at La Te Da, 1125 Duval St, Key West. Info: 305-296-6706; lateda.com.

Fringe Theater Of Key West
Key West: Key West is uniquely rich in historical and unusual venues and this “immersion theater” troupe literally “takes you places,” by performing unconventional shows in intimate settings that suit each play. On Thur, Feb 6 and Fri, Feb 7, ambition and music collide during a special reading of August Wilson’s award winning drama, “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” which plays at American Legion Post 168, 803 Emma St, Key West. “Desdemona,” by Nobel Prize-winning novelist, Toni Morrison, gives voice to one of Shakespeare’s most mys-terious characters in this inventive and lyrical retelling of Desdemona’s life and murder by Othello. Plays on Wed, Feb 19 through Sun, Feb 23 at the Side Bar of Aqua Nightclub, 504 Angela Street. “Bloomsday,” traces a professor’s journey to Dublin to find his “almost love of a lifetime” from 35 years ago when a shift in time provides him more than just an opportunity to reminisce. Opens Tues, March 17 and continues through Sat, March 28 at B&CG, Bayview Park on the corner of Virginia and Pearl Streets. Three actors present 37 Shake-speare plays in just 97 minutes during “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged.” Takes to the stage on Tues, April 21 through Sat, April 25 at The Tower at East Martello Fort. “Five Lesbians Eating a Quiche,” a comedy about what happens when a Communist attack in 1956 threatens a group of women’s idyllic way of life, opens on Tues, June 2 and plays through Sat, June 6 at the Key West Armory, 600 White St. Info: 305-707-4053; FringeTheater.org.

Impromptu Concerts
Key West: The Canellakis-Brown Duo, with pianist and composer, Michael Brown and cellist, Nicholas Canellakis, perform a captivating and innovative program on Feb 9. Hailed as the “Uncrowned Kings of the Saxophone,” “The Raschèr Saxophone Quartet” dazzles on February 23 followed by Natalia Kazaryan, pianist and Impromptu’s 2020 “Rising Star”on March 8. “The Calidore String Quartet,” considered to be one of the finest chamber music ensembles performing today, wraps up the season on March 22. The 4pm Sunday after-noon concert series takes place at St Paul’s Episcopal Church, 401 Duval St, Key West. Tickets available at the door or at keystix.com. Info: keywestimpromptu.org.

Randy Roberts Live!
Key West: Spotlighted on television’s hit series “America’s Got Talent,” Randy Roberts
absolutely shines in this live, multi-media tribute to some of the world’s most beloved performers. His uncanny impersonations of Cher, Better Midler and Mae West are spot-on and he’ll have you rolling in the aisles when he performs a titillating strip tease as the bawdy Gypsy Rose Lee. But nothing compares to “Consuela,” Roberts’ own self-created character which can only be described as Ann-Margaret, Liza Minnelli and Joan Rivers all rolled into one powerhouse performer. Catch this amazing show at La Te Da’s Crystal Room Cabaret, 1125 Duval St, Key West. Info: 305-296-6706; lateda.com.

Red Barn Theatre
Key West: The Red Barn Theatre continues its 40th season on Tues, Feb 18 with “Short Attention Span: Twilight Zone,”an evening of quirky, out-of-the-ordinary short plays. Catch it through Sat, March 14. Raconteur extraordinaire, John Wells, returns, guitar in hand, with songs and stories to reacquaint you with the old days of Key West in this two night special event on Sun, March 8 and Mon, March 9. “Frankie & Johnnie in the Clair De Lune,” a timeless story about a waitress and a short order cook’s one night stand, opens on Tues, March 24 and plays through Sat, April 18. Located at 319 Duval St, Key West. Info and tickets at 305-296-9911; redbarntheatre.com.

Waterfront Playhouse
Key West: The Waterfront Playhouse continues its 80th season on Wed, Feb 12 through Sat, Feb 15 with “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill,” a poignant story about one of Billie Holiday’s last performances in 1959, just four months before her death. The international hit musical, “Priscilla Queen of the Desert,” a heartwarming, uplifting adventure about three friends searching for love and friendship opens on Thur, March 5 and plays through Sat, March 28 with a special preview on Tues, March 3 and Weds, March 4. On Sun, March 8, the Waterfront Playhouse officially celebrates its 80th season with a formal, red carpet Gala that includes a very special evening of songs highlighting the last 8 decades of musical theater, followed by a fabulous dinner in the garden catered by Key West’s Iron Chefs. Located at 310 Wall St, Key West. Tickets and info: 305-294-5015; waterfrontplayhouse.org.