FREE Classes for NEW Students

Thanks to a grant from Manatee Cares, ArtCenter Manatee is pleased to offer programs to help you reduce stress, isolation, and boredom brought on by COVID. We’ll provide you with a safe, creative environment where you can interact with others and destress for a few hours a week. The arts have been proven to facilitate the healing process and we have selected these classes to help you learn and have fun while you destress.

  • All classes are FREE.
  • Supplies are included (you will need to bring your own yogo mat).
  • Registration is limited to Manatee County residents NEW to ACM.
  • No experience needed.
  • Seating is limited so register now by calling 941-746-2862.
  • Masks are required-no exceptions.

Jewelry Making with Wendy Thurlow
Thursdays 6:00-9:00
October 8, 15, 22, 27
Learn the basic skills needed to make your own jewelry such as soldering, sawing, and forming metal. You’ll have fun as you create your own works of wearable art! Closed toe shoes required for safety. Limited to 9 students.

Learn the Potter’s Wheel with Seth Barendse
Fridays 1:00-4:00
October 16, 23, 30, Nov 6
Learn how to center, pull walls, and give shape to your pots. You’ll also learn how to trim and glaze. Limited to 6 students.

Yoga in the Gallery with Sarah Boler
Mondays 5:30-6:30
Oct 19, 26, Nov 2, 9
Give yourself the rejuvenating and relaxing gift of yoga. All poses are designed to increase your strength, balance and flexibility. Plus, it gives your nervous system a boost! If you have never tried yoga or have a regular practice this class is for you in the beautiful gallery atmosphere. Bring your own mat. Limited to 9 students.

Make Glass Beads with a Torch with Liana Martin
Saturdays 9:00-12:00
Oct 10, 17, 24, 31
Learn about safety, lampworking equipment, glass properties, bead making techniques and annealing. Students will learn to make beads of various shapes; how to use shaping, raking and poking tools; surface decoration; pulling stringers; basic encasing, frit work and making twisties. Limited to 9 students.

Qing Wang

My name is Qing Wang. I grew up under the nurturing OrientaI culture and art. But I took a fancy to sketching and Western Art in middle school.  I started to draw billboards for stores when I was 15 and studied art design and fine art while in college. After college, I had my own Advertising design company for a few years and worked for three galleries as a contract artist. During that time my artworks was sold to Russia, Arabia, Korea, and US. 

My work is very diversified. I create paintings in different mediums such as oil, acrylic, watercolor and resin and also enjoy resin pouring – even painting in resin. Yes, I’m still exploring my art style. 

I know there are more and more people and kids who love to paint and create – I’d love to share my skills and fun with everyone. I taught 155 students when I was in North Carolina. 

I love beaches so I create a lot of sea life and seascapes. In Feb 2020, I moved to Florida to explore my art career further. I’m looking forward to meeting new people and hope I can have more students join with me on my creative journey.

Classes with Qing Wang

Fishing For Diamonds Call For Artists

On Display: Oct 13 – Nov 20
Online Entry by Oct 1, 5:00pm
In-person receiving: Oct 10, 9:00-3:00pm

An open, all media juried exhibit with a twist (or two), sponsored by Jess Jewelers. First, the subject matter must be of a sea creature or a seascape, the second is that said creature needs to be wearing a diamond earring or the seascape must include a diamond earring. Why the specific guidelines? Jess Jewelers will present the top three award winners with a pair of genuine diamond earrings, as well as large cash prizes. So challenge yourself to think outside the tackle box and bring us your best whimsical sea creatures wearing some bling! 

First Place: $1000 and diamond earrings valued at $1000
Second Place: $750 and diamond earrings valued at $750
Third Place: $500 and diamond earrings valued at $500
Merit: $200
Best in 3D: $250
Best in Jewelry: $250
Honorable Mentions (3): $50 each

Youth Exhibit

Calling all young artists ages 6-15.  We would like to invite you to participate in an exciting exhibit we are planning for October to show alongside the adult “Fishing For Diamonds” exhibit. This unique exhibit has a few specific requirements that all work must adhere to, namely the subject matter needs to be a sea creature or a seascape, and either the sea creature needs to be wearing a “diamond” earring or the seascape needs to include a “diamond” earring in the picture.  Kids are invited to create new work or modify a piece created this past year. Awards will be given for First, Second and Third place and will include fun prizes.  The ArtCenter will take care of matting any 2D work received and there is no cost to enter this fun exhibit.  The work will be displayed in the galleries for the length of the exhibit.  So challenge yourself to think outside the tackle box and bring us your best whimsical sea creatures wearing some bling!  Call Angie for more information: 941-746-2862.

Exhibition Requirements

Entry Fees: Entry fees are nonrefundable and support the exhibition program at ArtCenter Manatee and help to keep the arts alive and vibrant in our community. If you are not currently a member, an individual membership is available for $60 for one full year.

1 piece – members $20, non-members $30
2 pieces – members $30, non-members $50
3 pieces – members $35, non-members $65
Diptych –members add $5, non-members add $10
Triptych –members add $15, non-members add $30


Artist Info


Payment Options


Rules & Signature




In the Making Exhibit

In the Making
is an open, all media, juried exhibit
On Display: Sep 9 – Oct 9
Pick up Date Oct 10, 9:00-4:00

Shown: A Bird In The Hand by Renee Benson, 1st place

Juror: Ryan Buyssens:
Ryan Buyssens received his MFA at Cranbrook Academy of Art, is a recipient of the North Carolina Artist Fellowship and has exhibited his work nationally and internationally. Ryan is currently an Assistant Professor of Art at New College of Florida. As an artist, inventor and maker, he expresses his commentary on logic and progress through the manipulation of various media. Ryan creates with the use of electronic sensors and microcontrollers, computer design, 3D printing, laser-cutting, deft hand skills and good-old-fashioned-patience.


Gallery Collection 2

Original Art & Accessories for Where You Live & Work.

Enjoy original art by local artists and support our community.

Stop by the ArtCenter to view these and other works from the In the Making Exhibit and LiveArtfully Artisan Boutique. To arrange a private tour of our galleries and artisan market, call ArtCenter Manatee, 941-746-2862. To purchase original art by a local artist, give us a call!

Call For Artists: Ornament Extravaganza

Help us deck our halls for the 2nd Annual Ornament Extravaganza!

On Display: Nov 24 – Dec 31

Register by: Sep 8
Receiving: Nov 11 & 20, by appointment only
Pick up: Jan 1-8

Call or email Heather to register:

Free Class & Project Demos

ArtCenter Manatee is offering a series of free demo videos to introduce you to select classes and instructors, as well as to bring you a few art projects for children. All the demos and projects will be posted to our YouTube Channel where you may view them as many times as you’re like.

Create Exhibition

On Display: June 16 – August 6 (Thursday) in all galleries

Pick up: Friday, August 7, 9:00-4:00pm

This open, all media, juried exhibit is sponsored by the Bradenton Area Arts & Culture.

Juror’s Statement
First of all, what a pleasure and honor it is to be welcomed into ArtCenter Manatee, in the middle of June of 2020, as uncertainty swirls around us. What I came to find in the impressive entries submitted to “Create,” was the very spirit that sustains us when we struggle. Over and over again, the work spoke of universal ideas and shared experience witnessed and reported in a lyrical use of varied media. The themes that emerge after a sustained look: memory, tenderness, frustration, fragility and resilience. My selections reflect the ability of the chosen work, an apparent core desire, to communicate clearly. I can see the labor in my selections and the intention of the artist reaches me in a way that feels surprising, insightful, and memorable. The bravery and innovation I walk away remembering is a welcome gift. Thank you.

Katherine Bzura Gallery Director, Assistant Professor State College of Florida

Juror: Katherine Bzura
Bzura has been a photographer (and the Vice President of a multi-million dollar woman-owned aerial photography company), an art consultant for painters and sculptors in New York, and an award-winning gallery owner in Ybor City.  She is now committed to showcasing art in Bradenton, and bringing examples of creativity and resilience into the lives of students at State College of Florida. In her current roles as Gallery Director of the Gallery @ SCF, the curator of the Art Collection @ SCF and an Assistant Professor teaching art history and art appreciation, Bzura continues to focus on the connections that exist between artists of all types and the communities and audiences they seek to reach. Katherine Bzura is a Florida native, the first National Merit Scholar to ever sign a four-year athletic scholarship at the University of South Florida who went on earn her Master’s Degree in Art History there.

Digital Art Quilt

We thank all the artists who participated in our digital art quilt for the 2020 Giving Challenge to help show the power of art to heal. We received 79 pieces of art. All we can say is WOW! and Thanks!

Digital Art Quilt Images

Sorry, but this form is no longer accepting submissions.

Watercolor Works: Kathy Simon-McDonald: Kellogg Gallery & Online Exhibit

Kellogg Gallery
May 11-June 12
Pickup: June 13, 9:00-4:00

View the watercolor works of Kathy Simon-McDonald in the Kellogg Gallery and online. Our Galleries will be open M-Sat beginning May 11 from 9:00-4:00. We will be wearing masks and ask that you do as well, and we’ll comply with the CDC guideline of 6 ft social distancing.

“What inspires me to paint is the challenge of translating a visual image I have seen through the lens of my camera to paper while trying to capture the intensity of what attracted me to that image in the first place. The ‘I want to capture that image on paper’ challenge is what always starts the painting. Then, the bigger challenge is whether I can convey in my painting the emotional intensity that attracted me to that image in the first place.”

Kathy Simon-McDonald

Exhibit Program PDF

Points Of View Exhibit

Searle & Reid Hodges Galleries
May 11-June 12
Pickup: June 13, 9:00-4:00

An open, all media, juried exhibit
View the all media works online or in our Galleries. Our Galleries will be open M-Sat beginning May 11 from 9:00-4:00. We will be wearing masks and ask that you do as well, and we’ll comply with the CDC guideline of 6 ft social distancing.

Exhibit Program PDF

Feb Open Pottery Studio

Sterling Edwards

Sterling Edwards is a contemporary watermedia master who is originally from Kansas City, Missouri. He has been a resident of North Carolina since 1973.

In 2007 Sterling was honored to be awarded signature member status in the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour (CSPWC) and in 2010 he was awarded signature membership status in the Transparent Watercolor Society of America (TWSA).

Sterling was a featured artist in the fall 2001 issue of Watercolor Magic Magazine’s Ones to Watch” and has been featured in numerous other magazine and newspaper articles. In 2009 he was a featured artist in the book, Best of America Watermedia Artists”. He is the author of the best selling North Light book Creating Luminous Watercolor Landscapes, a Four Step Process” and is a featured artist in numerous  other books by various national and international publishers including, “Masters of Watercolor”, published in 2015 by Russian artist and author, Konstantin Sterkhov. Sterling is also the designer of a signature line of multi-media paint brushes and a watercolor palette that are marketed internationally.

In 2013 Sterling was proudly accepted by invitation into the International Watercolor Society (IWS) and in 2015 was awarded a lifetime signature membership into the internationally renowned Whiskey Painters of America (WPA), the most unique and exclusive miniature painting society in the world.  In 2017 he was awarded signature membership status in the National Watercolor Society (NWS).

Highly respected among his peers, Sterling is often commissioned to jury national and international art competitions. His award-winning paintings are in private and corporate collections worldwide. Sterling works from his home studio in Lewisville, North Carolina.

AGAMI Boundaries Erased

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Pick up is 3:00-6:00 on Friday Feb 7


Artists’ Guild Of Anna Maria Island (AGAMI), 11th Annual Juried Art Exhibition, Boundaries Erased. An open, all media, juried exhibit curated by AGAMI, whose mission is to promote and support creative processes by bringing together all Artists – visual and performing and writers – to share experiences, expertise and work together to develop and promote the artistic community.

Juror: Dean Mitchell, a national and internationally acclaimed artist whose work can be found in corporate and museum collections across the country. He is celebrated for his figurative works, landscapes and still lifes and has received more than 400 awards.


Best of Show $500
Susanna Spann “Friday on Frenchmen Street”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

First Place $400
Cheryl Jorgensen “Busy Day in Thailand”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Second Place $300
Doreen Renner “Cardinal Rule”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Third Place $200
Lu Ann Widergren “Morning View from Rod-n-Reel”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Excellence in Photography $100
Cathy Tobias “Great Migration!”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Cathy Tobias “Flamingo Delight”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Merit Awards $50
Patricia Kness “In the Breeze”
Sponsor: Jo Anne Curtan, A Paradise Realty

Sandy Staley “Market Baskets”
Sponsor: Jo Anne Curtan, A Paradise Realty

Roger Rockefeller “Autumn Market”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Karen de Leon Stuart “Mark Had Always Wanted to Travel”
Sponsor: Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Honorable Mentions $25
Rick Dziak “Anna Maria Beach”
Sponsor: Rosebay International, Inc., Katharine Pepper

Kathy Simon-McDonald “Chalk Artist VI”
Sponsor: Rosebay International, Inc., Katharine Pepper

George Fischer “Kim”
Sponsor: Rosebay International, Inc., Katharine Pepper

Donna Grossman “Midsummer’s Night Dream”
Sponsor: Rosebay International, Inc., Katharine Pepper

Pickup Saturday, Feb 8th, 9:00-Noon

For more information, contact AGAMI

Agami sponsors

Three Modern Masters

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Kellogg Gallery

February 11, 2020- March 13, 2020

Opening Reception February 13, 5:00-7:00

A curated exhibit featuring three world-class watercolor masters: Dean Mitchell AWS, NWS, TWSA; John Salminen, AWS, NWS, TWSA; and Thomas Schaller, AWS, NWS, TWSA.

Also on display will be the Annual Aqueous Show by the Florida Suncoast Watercolor Society.

The artists will be at the Opening Reception.

Images from top left: Urban America or Broken Wealth by Dean Mitchell, Bridge – China by Thomas Schaller, Setting Up by John Salminen

Dean Mitchell:

Florida artist Dean Mitchell is a graduate of the Columbus College of Art & Design in Columbus, Ohio. Mitchell is well known for his figurative works, landscapes and still lifes. In addition to watercolors, he is accomplished in other media, including egg tempera, oil and pastel.

Mitchell has been featured in numerous publications, including The New York TimesChristian Science MonitorAmerican ArtistArtist MagazineFine Art International and Art News.

His art can be found in corporate and museum collections across the country, including: Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri; Mississippi Museum of Art, Jackson, Mississippi; Saint Louis Art Museum, Saint Louis, Missouri; Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, Missouri; Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, Missouri; Beach Museum of Art, Manhattan, Kansas; The Autry National Center, Los Angeles; The Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock, Arkansas; Gadsden Art Center Quincy, Florida; Canton Museum of Art, Canton, Ohio and the Library of Congress.

He has received the American Watercolor Society Gold Medal, Allied Artist of American Gold Medal in Watercolor and Oil, Thomas Moran Award from the Salmagundi Club in New York, Remington Professional League, and for three years in a row the Best in Show Award from the Mississippi Watercolor Society Grand National Competition. In 2004 and 2007, he received the Autry National Center Award for Watercolor at the Masters of the American West Fine Art Exhibition and sale. Mitchell is a member of several professional societies, including the American Watercolor Society and the National Watercolor Society.

“I am always searching for a sense of place—a sense of intimacy in my work,” he says.

John Salminen:

Salminen had won more than 195 awards in national and international watercolor art exhibitions and competitions. These include the American Watercolor Society Gold Medal, the First Place Silver Star Award in the National Watercolor Society Exhibition, the 2009 Silver Medal With Honor from Allied Artistand the Biennial Award in the Shanghai Zhujiajiao International Biennial Exhibition. He was invited to China in 2010 to receive this Biennial Award in person and was invited back to China a second time to represent the United States in the Lushan International Watercolor Festival. Salminen has also gained recognition for his mixed-medium abstract paintings. One of his experimental paintings won first place in The Artist’s Magazine’s 2000 art competition.

Salminen’s paintings have been featured in national and international magazines such as the American Artist’s Watercolor MagazineThe Artist’s MagazineWatercolor MagicInternational ArtistL’Art de L’Aquarelle and Chinese Watercolor Quarterly. His work has also been featured in many books, including L’Art de L’Aquarelle Le Libre, Splash and the North Light publication Art Journey America: Landscapes.

Salminen is included in Who’s Who In American Art and Who’s Who in America. “John Salminen is one of America’s most highly recognized watercolorists.” – quote from the Artist’s Magazine.

Thomas Schaller:

Thomas W. Schaller is an award-winning artist, architect, and author based in Los Angeles. As a renowned architectural artist, he received a Graham Foundation Grant and was a two-time recipient of the Hugh Ferris Memorial Prize. He has authored three books; the best-selling, and AIA award winner, Architecture in Watercolor (VNR – McGraw Hill) The Art of Architectural Drawing (J.Wiley and Sons)and  Thomas W. Schaller, Architect of Light : Watercolor Paintings by a Master – a retrospective of his recent artwork released by North Light Books / F+W Media and now Penguin / Random House, NYC  in 2018.

His work is collected world-wide and is part of a number of permanent collections including The Johhan Museum: Shanghai: The Watermark Museum; Fabriano: The Tchoban Foundation; Berlin: The Pacific Arts Foundation; Newport Beach, The Museum of Watercolor, Mexico City. His artwork has been featured in prestigious International Watercolor Masters exhibitions in over twenty countries including:  Universal Watercolor Maestro Biennale 2019 -Shanghai: “Cities in Motion” Exhibition, Moscow;  First International World of High Watercolor Exposition : Moscow; “Geniuses of Watercolor” Exhibition , New Delhi, India; Fabriano in Aquarello ,Italy 2016,17,18; The Masters Exhibition at the Salmagundi Club NYC: Master Exhibition of Watercolor; Johhan Museum of Art; Shanghai, Lake-Blue Heaven – Qingdao, China:  Silk Road International Exposition, Xi’an; Shenzhen Watercolor Biennial, National Watercolor Society/China Exchange Exhibition, Masters of Watercolor; St Petersburg. and in the USA in exhibitions of The American Watercolor Society, The National Watercolor Society, The Transparent Watercolor Society of America, Architecture in Perspective, among many others. He has been a featured presenter at the Plein-Air  Conference PACE in San Diego, the Roman Watercolor Society, Rome, The National Watercolor Society, the California Art Club, and the Pushkin Museum of Art, Moscow.

Admission $5.00

Gallery Hours: M/F/S 9-5, T/W/Th 9-6. Closed Sunday.

Not So Big Art Blowout, August 8, 2020


To view and purchase an original piece of art , check out our web gallery. Work in the blowout gallery can be purchased beginning on Aug 1 by calling 941-746-2862

Not So Big Art Blowout Online Sale

ACM Members Show 2020

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Pick up is 3:00-6:00 on Friday Feb 7

A member only all media, juried exhibit.
Searle & Reid Hodges Galleries
Jan 14-Feb 7

Opening Reception Thursday, Jan 16, 5-7pm

They come from as far away as Quebec and as close as next door. Some are painters, some are sculptors, some are potters, some are jewelers, and some are wood workers. Though their tools vary, they share a talent and passion for creating something from nothing, for seeing the world from a different perspective. Every year, we celebrate them and their work in our Members Exhibit.

1st Place: Mom Loved to Sew by Larry Felder.

Juror: Cassia Kite is an interdisciplinary artist who created Soundstitching, a multimedia project that transforms color from a hand-stitched image into a musical composition that can be interpreted by a musician and/or performance artist. Kite has collaboratively produced large-scale work for chamber ensemble and dancers using color-coded graphic scores derived from her hand-stitched tapestries. Kite’s work was premiered at the KANEKO in Omaha, Nebraska in July of 2017. She has been featured as an experimental composer and visual artist in music festivals, museums and universities. Kite has been awarded artist in residence at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts in 2018 and The Hambidge Creative Residency Program in 2019. She is the recipient of the Paul J. Smith Excellence in Fibers Award from the Fiber Art Network 2018.

Kite was born in Auburn, Nebraska. She earned a B.F.A in painting and sculpture, and a B.S. in Art Education from Northwest Missouri State University in 2003. She completed her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Florida in 2010. Currently, Kite is a Visual Art Instructor in the fine arts program at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida and resides in Sarasota, FL.

Kite is represented by Anderson O’Brien Fine Art in Omaha, Nebraska and State of the Arts Gallery in Sarasota, FL.

Member 2020 awards


A Walk in the Woods

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December 17, 2019 – January 10, 2020
Opening Reception, December 19, 2019, 5 pm – 7 pm

A four person exhibit with whimsical horse sculptures surrounded by three talented landscape artists who each interpret the forest in their own style.

Participating Artists:
Mindy Colton – 3D
Approximately 15 – 20 sculptures
Cheryl Moody – 2D
Evelyn McCorristin Peters – 2D
Cecile Moran – 2D

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