Past Grounds4Art Projects
Artist Tory Tepp
Location Visual Arts Building (YVAB), Ybor City Campus
In the fall of 2021 HCC commissioned artist Tory Tepp to create Fledgling, a mobile sculpture that would serve as a traveling platform for artistic activation and education focusing on issues such as sustainability, agriculture, food sovereignty and inclusion. The project was conceptualized as a way to build upon HCC’s NEST (Nourishment, Education, and Social Terraces) initiative, which resulted in socially-activated greenspaces on two campuses that feature a variety of fruiting trees as well as the infrastructure to support interdisciplinary programming. Fledgling, whose name references both HCC’s hawk mascot and the project’s ability to venture beyond the NEST sites, brings a creative sculpture directly into the community for diverse dialogue and engagement. A bespoke cart-and-tricycle equipped with customizable and interchangeable toolkits, Fledgling can be deployed into various neighborhoods or community centers to support performances, discussions and workshops.
Tory Tepp, who also created the NEST sites, was the creative lead for Fledgling. Tepp’s numerous public projects center on the exploration and reestablishment of the metaphysical connections between the social and environmental ecologies that shape urban communities. As a creative placemaking project, Fledgling was designed with broad public input and with support from a team of student interns from Hillsborough Community College, the University of South Florida and the University of Tampa.
Explore our photo album to learn more about the Fledgling and view examples of community deployments.
For more information about deploying Fledgling for your community event, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Artist:
Tory Tepp received his under-graduate BFA in painting from Parson’s, the New School for Design in New York City and an MFA in 2009 as part of the inaugural class of Suzanne Lacy’s Public Practice program at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. Tepp has completed projects all over the U.S., including New Orleans, Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Death Valley, the High Sierra Mountains, New Smyrna Beach, Tampa, and the Wormfarm Institute in Wisconsin.
This project is made possible with the support of: Arts Council of Hillsborough County and the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners, HCC Foundation, HCC Student Government Association, HCC Sustainability and Tempus Projects.
Project Partners: On behalf of the HCC Public Art Committee, Grounds4Art also recognizes our project partners: Feeding Tampa Bay, HCC Foundation, Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture & the Arts, and Tempus Projects.
TITLE HCC Dance: 20 Years of Life
ARTIST Bianca Russell
LOCATION Child Development Center Building (YCDC), Ybor City Campus
In 2021, alumna Bianca Russell was commissioned to create a mural commemorating the 20th anniversary of the HCC Dance program. The composition includes references to eleven different performances that occurred throughout the program’s history that highlight both the technical and cultural aspects of dance. During the project’s research phase, Russell worked with current HCC students to choreograph a movement they called “the in-between moments.” The artist then translated the choreography into fluid strokes of blue paint that visually and conceptually link the present to the history of the program
“I believe that public murals help to create community by radiating out stories and energy that touch everyone who passes by them… I hope that [this mural] will become a place where students can reflect in-between classes and talk about generations of past programs and those yet to come.” - Bianca Russell
This project was made possible with the support of HCC Ybor City Campus Student Government Association.
next to Science (DSCI) and Humanities (DHUM) buildings, Dale Mabry Campus
next to Visual Arts building (YVAB), Ybor City Campus
Nourishment, Education and Social Terraces (NEST) is a multi-campus public art initiative created by artist Tory Tepp that transformed sections of the HCC Dale Mabry and Ybor City Campuses into socially activated green spaces. Utilizing social practices while capitalizing on a local community’s assets and potential, NEST aims to empower creative solutions for addressing issues of food insecurity, sustainability and inclusion through the creation of accessible spaces to gather, interact, teach and entertain one another.
As a creative placemaking project, NEST included broad-spectrum public input during a research and design phase in the fall of 2020, leading to a fabrication phase the following spring with the support of nearly 100 community volunteers. The NEST site at the HCC Dale Mabry Campus features a distinct in-the-round design, with a central raised dais flanked by organically shaped earthen berms and circular tables tiled with the phases of the moon. At the HCC Ybor Campus, the NEST site re-imagines existing architectural features to create a proscenium stage, tiered earthen seating, and a mosaic of ceramic tiles designed by diverse Tampa Bay artists. At the project’s unveiling in April 2021, the NEST sites hosted performances by campus groups such as music, dance, and theatre as well as by local organizations like Tampa Homegrown. Today, the spaces are home to over 300 individual plants from more than forty different species—such as Muscadine Grape, African Blue Basil, Sunshine Mimosa, White Jade Pineapple, Butter Cream Mango, Pomegranate, and Tropical Milkweed, among others—and can be utilized as outdoor classrooms, performance venues, and gathering spaces.
Watch this video to learn more about the project.
For more information about reserving these public art sites for performances or events, please contact Amanda Poss (email@example.com).
About the Artist: Tory Tepp received his under-graduate BFA in painting from Parson’s, the New School for Design in New York City and an MFA in 2009 as part of the inaugural class of Suzanne Lacy’s Public Practice program at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. There he developed his practice around the exploration and reestablishment of the metaphysical connections between the social and environmental ecologies that shape urban communities. Tepp has completed projects all over the U.S., including New Orleans, Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Death Valley, the High Sierra Mountains, New Smyrna Beach, Tampa, and the Wormfarm Institute in Wisconsin.
Contributors: This project is made possible with the support of: The Gobioff Foundation Treasure Tampa Grant, The Stanton Storer Embrace the Arts Foundation, HCC Dale Mabry Campus Student Government Association, HCC Foundation, and Tempus Projects.
Project Partners: On behalf of the HCC Public Art Committee, Grounds4Art also recognizes our project partners: Hillsborough Arts Council, Feeding Tampa Bay, HCC Foundation, Rooted Resistance, Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture & the Arts, and Tempus Projects.
|Artist||Jay Giroux and Edgar Sanchez Cumbas|
|Location||Visual Arts Building (YVAB), Ybor City Campus|
Created by artists Jay Giroux and Edgar Sanchez Cumbas, Living Shades is HCC’s fifth public art project and the largest mural to-date for the Ybor City Campus. The mural is replete with references to Ybor City: a cast-iron street lamp, a close-up of trolley doors, the distinct medieval tower of the Castle nightclub, a portrait of Lady Columbia for the Columbia Restaurant (the oldest restaurant in Florida), and images of Ybor’s iconic roosters. Each symbol provides a colorful and layered view into the city’s distinctive attributes and history. The artists also celebrate the diverse cultural heritage of the district, found in imagery such as a portrait of Cuban poet José Martí (1853-1895), who gave many impassioned speeches for Cuban Independence to cigar workers in Ybor City, as well as a large blind contour drawing referencing the immigrant family sculpture (created by Steve Dickey in 1992) in Centennial Park. Floral and organic imagery found within the design likewise reference the nearby public art project NEST, also created in the spring of 2021, by artist Tory Tepp.
Woven together with a hexagonal pattern attributed to the pavers that line Ybor City’s sidewalks in the historic district, the mural’s composition also alludes to the legacy of the college’s visual arts program. Certain stylistic and symbolic elements layered within the mural were inspired in part by the creativity and passion of former HCC faculty and community artists who had a transformative influence on the visual arts at the HCC Ybor City Campus, especially Suzanne Camp Crosby (1948-2020), Carolyn Kossar (1949-2020), and Theo Wujcik (1936-2014).
Artists Jay Giroux and Edgar Sanchez Cumbas have each completed numerous projects in the public realm. Recent collaborative commissions include the Countable and Uncountable Stories of Rob City (2018) mural in Julian B. Lane Park created for the City of Tampa Public Arts Program. Jay Giroux (b. 1979 in Vermont) is an artist, designer, and educator whose paintings involve a continued exploration of incidental gestures and lowbrow symbolism culled from the urban streetscape. Giroux received his MFA in 2011 from the University of Houston and is a student of the late Theo Wucjik. Edgar Sanchez Cumbas (b. 1971 in Puerto Rico) is an artist and educator whose work explores themes of identity, cultural and visual transitions, and contemporary abstract expressionism. Cumbas received his MFA in 2013 from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.
This project was made possible with the support of: HCC Ybor City Campus Student Government Association and the HCC Ybor City Visual and Performing Arts Department.
|Location||Social Sciences Building (DSSC), Dale Mabry Campus|
Inspired in part by the creation of a food relief program for HCC’s campuses, Grounds4Art commissioned Argentine-American artist Cecilia Lueza to create a large-scale mural focused on addressing issues related to food insecurity, mental and emotional health, and social and cultural inclusion. Designed with community feedback, Exuberance projects an image of inner strength and well-being. Showcasing Lueza’s trademark exploration of the visual effects of color and geometric abstraction, the mural prominently features a portrait of a young woman in profile. With outstretched arms and her gaze lifted to the skies, the figure imparts a sense of dynamic energy and hopefulness that parallels the community’s desire for perpetual growth and positive social change.
Lueza has worked on a variety of site-specific and public art projects in cities throughout the United States since 2000. Her work has been exhibited at Art Miami, Arteamericas, and Scope Miami Beach, and she has completed public art pieces in Washington D.C., Jacksonville, FL, West Palm Beach, and St. Petersburg, FL, among others. Lueza’s artwork can be found in public and private collections throughout the United States, Europe and Latin America.
Contributors: This project was made possible with the support of: The Arts Council of Hillsborough County and The Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners, HCC Dale Mabry Campus Student Government Association, Bay Art Files, and an Anonymous donor (in memory of Mary F. and Herbert O. Brennan).
Project Partners: On behalf of the HCC Dale Mabry Public Art Committee, Grounds4Art also recognizes project partners: Bay Art Files, City of Tampa, Arts & Cultural Affairs, Feeding Tampa Bay, and HCC Food Education Depot (FED).
|Location||West side of the Humanities building (DHUM), Dale Mabry Campus|
Sponsored by the community organization Art2Action, Egyptian artist Aya Tarek’s mural is the second public art project to be completed at the Dale Mabry Campus. Over the course of two weeks, Tarek—a prolific artist who has created large-scale murals in Cairo, Berlin, São Paolo and Portland, among others—worked on campus with HCC students and community members to fabricate the mural.
As whole, the project Painting Ourselves Visible sought to celebrate and increase the visibility of Arab, Middle Eastern/North African (MENA) and Muslim communities in the Tampa area. In service of that goal, Tarek’s mural contains elements reminiscent of multiple artistic traditions, such as portraiture inspired by Fayum mummy portraits and iconographical elements drawn from Christian artwork made during the Byzantine and Roman Empires. The project culminated in a three-day celebration of MENA culture, including an official mural unveiling, a screening of the 2010 independent film Microphone featuring Tarek, and workshops led by Art2Action founder Andrea Assaf, Syrian stage director Kholoud Sawaf and visual artist Ameena Khan. Programming also included a panel on creative placemaking featuring Neil Gobioff, President of the Gobioff Foundation, Ashley Walden Davis, Managing Director of Alternate ROOTS, and Robin Nigh, Manager of Arts & Cultural Affairs for the City of Tampa.
This project was made possible with the support of the Gobioff Foundation Treasure Tampa Grant.
|Location||Learning Resources Center (DLRC), Dale Mabry Campus|
In honor of HCC’s 50th Anniversary, Grounds4Art commissioned Florida-based artist Michael Parker to complete the campus’ inaugural public art project. The result of Parker’s vision, which included a collaboration with the HCC community that empowered students to assist in conceptualizing and fabricating the mural, was a 67-foot-long mural titled Infinite Transitions.
Meant to honor the college’s unique history along with icons representing the campus itself, the mural features layered images that reflect upon the educational journey taken by HCC’s students. Embedded in the complex composition, one will find images such as the Social Sciences building (an homage to the first building constructed on the Dale Mabry Campus), aerial maps that recognize diversity of campus programs and infrastructure, campus pride reflected through two centrally located hawks, DNA strands noting the strength of the campus’ science and health programs, and portraits at either end of the mural noting the foundational and inspirational role of our students. The mural’s fabrication culminated in a public celebration in April of 2019 that brought together diverse student groups, including performances by Spoken Word and Hip-Hop Expression and documentation by the Film Club.
Major Contributors: George Anderton, Anonymous Donation in Honor of Katherine Gibson, The Dr. Lydia R. Daniel Honors Program, Deborah Leighty, Yann and Susana Weymouth
Contributors: Cecilia Carr, Herding Squirrels Writing Group, Debra Heysek, Joann Kakascik-Dye, Susann Kirchner, Karen Marra Nelson, Gayle Peterson-Palmberg, Connie and Jim Reed, Gina Ricard, Kathryn Smith, Dana Warner, Ann Menchen, Paula Porter-Smith, Gwendolyn Suarez, Beth Wyckoff