OMAM to open 'Wings of Splendor' exhibit on Thursday

The exhibition will feature 50 of Tampa artist John Costin's works.

  • By
  • | 1:00 p.m. June 4, 2024
John Costin. Courtesy photo
John Costin. Courtesy photo
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A new exhibition at Ormond Memorial Art Museum celebrates summer by featuring the works of Tampa artist John Costin.

The exhibit, "Wings of Splendor," is composed of Costin's detailed bird portraits, created through multi-plate etching which are then individually hand-painted. This solo exhibition, according to a press release, showcases 50 of his works and a small etching press from his studio.

"Pensive Great Blue" by John Costin. Courtesy photo

"I consider my work bird portraits," Costin said in his artist statement. "Most of my subjects are depicted life size. I go out in the field and take hundreds of photos of whatever bird I want to work on. The photos are taken back to my studio for me to study them and are then put away. I then draw from memory, creating the backgrounds and posing the subject. I never use photographs while drawing because I do not want my subjects to look photographic. That is extremely important to me." 

Costin has been a professional artist since 1979. Though he began working as an electrician in his early 20s, he studied art history and printmaking in college. One of his goals, the press release states, "is to transform the traditional perception of birds in nature, 'traditional realism,' that people are most familiar with and give it more of a contemporary familiarity."

The exhibition will open on Thursday, June 6 and will run through Sept. 22. A free opening reception with live music by guitarist Howard Post and bassist Ron Gilotti will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, June 6.


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