Opening of the “American Pickers” exhibition in the Atrium

Opening of the “American Pickers” exhibition in the Atrium

An exhibition of twelve paintings embodying the working spirit of a Florida orange orchard has opened at the Atrium Gallery inside the Orange County Administration Building in Orlando. Tony Rosa is the artist who created the works and created the “American Pickers” group tile. He’s a huge fan of the TV show of the same name, and feels the show has at least one thing in common: they both feature searching back roads that have led to the discovery of hidden treasures.

Tony Rosa lives in the heart of Florida. In the spring of 2019, he stopped at an orange grove a mile from his home and asked permission to spend time among the workers. “From that short visit, I sensed something extraordinary was happening,” Rosa says. Drawing scenes became a necessity for him. “I was inspired, energized, and worked like a madman for ten straight weeks. I am convinced that the whole process was a magical moment and the proof was in the effort and motivation that drove me to tell the story.”

Ultimately, I chose the title ‘American Pickers’ because I felt it was the best description. My intention wasn’t to be any kind of political statement, but I hope it will make some viewers pause to think about what is being filmed and how accurate and appropriate the title is. In limited Spanish, I understood the phrase ‘Muchas Naranjas.’ I was greeted with phrase and smiling faces as I walked around the grove. It was fitting to use it as a title for a number of paintings.”

For three consecutive years, Tony Rosa’s paintings have received first prize, “Jury’s Choice” at Tampa Bay Lightning’s annual celebration of the arts. More than 500 participants were received each year and reviewed by a blind jury that included representatives from the Tampa Museum of Art, Ringling Museum of Art, St Pete’s Museum of Fine Arts, and the Daly Museum. His other work, “Bayonets and Bougainvillea” currently hangs in the mural plaza at the AE Backus Museum and Gallery in Fort Pierce, Florida. His works have been judged in national exhibitions.

“American Pickers” will be on display at the Atrium Gallery inside the Orange County Administration Building at 201 S. Rosalind Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801 through November 30, 2021.

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