The Arts Alliance’s sixth annual MUSE Awards fundraising benefit for the arts on February 8 recognizes on the breadth and beauty of art and culture in our City of the Arts, and pays tribute to those who continue to inspire and guide St. Petersburg to its standing as an international arts destination.
This year the St. Petersburg Arts Alliance is proud to announce our Visual Arts Recipient, sculptor Mark Aeling.
Mark earned his Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture at Washington University in 1993 and opened MGA Sculpture Studio LLC in St. Louis, where he became well-known for design, fabrication and architectural industries in the Midwest region.
Mark relocated to St. Petersburg in 2005 and set up MGA Sculpture Studio in the Warehouse Arts District. His work has been commissioned by BayCare Health Services, The Florida Aquarium and the City of St. Petersburg. In 2013 MGA was awarded a private commission to create six life-sized bronze dolphins for Sundial, the shopping and movie complex in the heart of downtown.
This past summer Mark was awarded public art commissions for large-scale work in both the interior and exterior of the new St. Petersburg Police Headquarters. This fall he was asked to create a monument that commemorates the events of 9/11 called Rise, that will be placed at the ArtsXchange in the Warehouse Arts District.
Mark’s sculpture is inspired by objects and focuses on the deeper conceptualization of form. He works in a variety of materials and uses many techniques for his creative process. Much of his work is representational but he would consider his focus to be on process.
He is often as inspired by how something is made, as what he is making. He spent many years studying the subtle nuances of form and texture and how they are translated through materials. The fine-tuning of this process is a life-long pursuit.
You can listen to an in-depth conversation with Mark Aeling on the Creative Pinellas podcast series, Arts In.
The MUSE Awards will honor Mark Aeling and celebrate our city’s artistic inspiration on Friday, February 8 at 7 p.m. at the Museum of Fine Arts.
Proceeds benefit artists, arts businesses, and arts and cultural organizations through our Arts Alliance programs and services.
Tickets to the MUSE Awards and Sponsorship Opportunities are on our website.