Boca Grande Resort will be filled with white tents with a myriad of artwork, live music, food vendors and a multitude of colors during the 6th annual Boca Grande Art and Wine Festival being held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on March 23 and 24.
The show will feature just 50 of the nation’s finest artists presenting one-of-a-kind pieces in categories including oil, acrylic and watercolor paintings, sculpture, ceramics, fine jewelry and blown glass. A majority of the artists have never displayed their artwork in Boca Grande before. Admission is free. Proceeds benefit The Harry Chapin Food Bank.
Among the artists is Nicholas Toth of Tarpon Springs, who has been creating copper and brass diving helmets in Tarpon Springs for more than 30 years. He continues a 100-year family tradition begun by his grandfather, legendary craftsman and master helmet maker Anthony Lerios, who arrived in Tarpon Springs in 1913. While helmets created by Toth and his grandfather were used by sponge divers in the area,Toth evolved and expanded his artistic focus, using the inspiration of his iconic diving helmets to create hand-hammered copper and brass art pieces.
Over the years, Toth has garnered many awards. He is a two-time Florida Individual Artist Fellowship recipient, first in 1998 and then again in 2012. In 2000 he represented the State of Florida in the 200th anniversary of the Library of Congress and that same year was awarded placement in the collection of the American Folklife Center in the Library of Congress. In 2006 he was presented the E.R. Cross Award by the Historical Diving Society. Toth is also a Florida Folk Heritage Award recipient presented by Gov. Charlie Crist and is a National Heritage Fellowship recipient presented by the National Endowment for the Arts in 2003.
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