The Alliance for the Arts’ May exhibit, Along the Coast, will feature award winning painters from Tampa, Laura Waller and Sarah Hull. Experience a sunny state of mind with an exhibition that explores Florida’s coast. The show runs from May 4-26 at the Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers, FL 33919.

Laura’s large scale paintings serve as a metaphor and provide the narrative for her paintings. Sarah’s use of perspective, angles and shadows conveys tension and mood.

The opening reception will be held on May 4 from 5 – 7 p.m. and is open to the public. A conversational walk and talk with the exhibiting artists will be held on May 5 at 10 a.m. during Alliance for the Arts Weekly GreenMarket. Admission to the gallery is free, but a $5 suggested donation helps keep arts programming accessible.

About Laura Waller

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Laura Waller received her undergraduate and master’s degrees from Newcomb College and Tulane University in New Orleans, LA. Concurrent with studies in sociology, psychology and social work, she developed a passion for art and art history.

After an eleven-year career as a professional therapist, Laura Waller became a certified financial planner and founder of the successful Waller & Wax Advisors firm in Tampa, FL. Throughout her thirty-year career in finance, she continued to paint and study independently with prestigious artists in Arizona, Florida, and Maine. Waller was selected in 2013, 2014, 2015, and again for 2018, for artist residencies at the Vermont Studio Center.

As a full-time artist, Laura Waller works out of her two studios in Maine and Florida. Her Working Waterfront: Port Tampa Bay paintings were featured in a winter 2015 solo exhibition at the Clayton Galleries, Tampa, FL. Her Working Waterfront: New Work paintings were featured in a summer 2016 solo exhibition at Elizabeth Moss Galleries, Falmouth, ME. New paintings from the Port Side series were featured in a solo exhibition open from January 27, 2017 to March 11, 2017 at Clayton Galleries in Tampa, FL.

Waller was awarded the Arts Council of Hillsborough County 2016 Individual Artist Grant in 2016. Her paintings are collected by individuals and corporations nationwide.

About Sarah Hull

A few years ago, Sarah began to paint objects, figures and landscapes as they appear from an elevated point of view.

In 2015, Sarah began to focus specifically on beaches in Florida and New England. She first began to photo document beach scenes from the top floor of hotels, later in an airplane. She has also learned to use drones to  capture references for this high-elevation, bird’s eye perspective.

Her intent is to evoke a sense of isolation one might experience in a crowd; the juxtaposition of isolation and loneliness co-existing within a relaxed, leisurely recreational space, voyeuristically looking into, but not being part of the world below.

 Join fellow Alliance for the Arts members in a monthly exploration of literature focused on art, artists, art history and art appreciation. Alliance Member Gallery Book Club continues on May 15, 2018. Club members must purchase their own copy of each book, but an active Alliance membership is all that’s required. The group meets at 6:30 p.m. the third Thursday of every month in the gallery.

May 15 Meeting: The Yellow House: Van Gogh, Gauguin and the Nice Turbulent Weeks in Arles by Martin Gayford
Gallery Exhibition: Along the Coast

The Yellow House tells of how Paul Gauguin and Vincent van Gogh shared a home in Arles from October to December 1888, making them the Odd Couple of art history. Never, before or since have two such towering artistic talents been penned up in so small a space. Despite their cohabitation being short lived, as Van Gogh suffered a psychological crisis two months after Gauguin arrived in Arles, a stream of masterpieces was created within the studio they shared during the period they worked together.

June 19 Meeting: The Lady and the Unicorn by Tracy Chevalier
Gallery Exhibition:
Augmented Reality

A tour de force of history and imagination, The Lady and the Unicorn is Tracy Chevalier’s answer to the mystery behind the making of a set of bewitching medieval tapestries that hangs today in the Cluny Museum in Paris. Six lavish tapestries, commissioned by a shrewd French nobleman to celebrate his rising status at Court, designed by a charismatic, arrogant, sublimely talented artist, and woven in the Brussels workshop by a master weaver who will risk everything he has to finish the tapestries on time for his exacting French client. The results change all their lives—lives that have been captured in the tapestries, for those who know where to look.

July 17 Meeting: Reading Like a Writer by Francine
Gallery Exhibition: Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America

Take a guided tour of the tools and the tricks of the masters to discover why their work has endured. Written with passion, humor, and wisdom, Reading Like a Writer will inspire readers to return to literature with a fresh eye and an eager heart. Francine analyzes the long and magnificent sentences of Philip Roth, the breathtaking paragraphs of Isaac Babel, the brilliant characterization in George Eliot’s Middlemarch, John Le Carré’s lessons in how to advance plot through dialogue, Flannery O’Connor’s cunning use of the telling detail, and, most important, how Prose cautions readers to slow down and pay attention to words, the raw material out of which all literature is crafted.

The Alliance for the Arts offers summer arts classes for infants and preschoolers, beginning in June. These courses are designed to provide young children opportunities to learn, experiment and eventually master the skill at their own rate.

School of Rock begins June 5 and runs on Tuesdays through June 26. The course offers students the opportunity to learn how to create songs and record them, rock out on an instrument and play music while making friends. Dance in Color begins June 7 and runs on Thursdays through June 28. Fundamentals and form for hip hop, dancing, ballet, lyrical and jazz are taught. Both classes are for preschool ages 4 and 5 and cost $90 for Alliance members or $115 for nonmembers. Classes are instructed by April Cox.

April Cox has been a general education teacher for Lee County Schools for the past 11 years and was a preschool director in southwest Florida. Cox was a summer arts camp instructor for the Alliance for the Arts and has directed numerous drama productions in the past five years.

Music and Movement is a 30 minute interactive musical experience, led by San Francisco Bay Area’s beloved children’s musician Megan Schoenbohm. Infants, toddlers and preschoolers (ages infant-5) are accompanied in the class by a parent, grandparent or caregiver. Rhythmic and tonal patterns will be practiced encouraging growth in both babies’ and grown-ups’ musical understanding. Movement and dance will provide a visual and visceral musical lesson in addition to being fun and engaging.

Music and Movement runs Mondays, beginning July 2 through July 23. The cost is $60 for Alliance members or $75 for nonmembers.

Alliance membership saves 20 percent on classes and workshops. To become a member, Visit

For more information or to register visit, visit or call 239-939-2787.

The Alliance for the Arts has limited space available for visual and performing arts summer camps for grades 1-6. The program is coupled with a one-of-a-kind, family-friendly summer gallery exhibitions.

Summer Arts Camps allow children to discover their creative abilities by taking part in visual and performing arts with a different theme each week. Alliance camps focus on painting and visual arts, theatre, music and dance instruction, which come together for an art exhibition and performance each Friday afternoon. Camp is held at the Alliance located at 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers, FL. Camp runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with extended care available from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. for a fee. Summer Arts Camp is $160 per week for Alliance Members or $200 per week for non-members. You may become a member to receive a 20% discount.

Themes include:

  • June 4 – June 8: Once Upon A Time
  • June 11 – June 15: Trapped in a Video Game
  • June 18 – June 22: Robot Mayhem
  • June 25 – June 29: The Search for Yellow Beard’s Hidden Treasure
  • July 9 – July 13: Are You Game?
  • July 16 – July 20: Broadway: Another Opening, Another Show!
  • July 23 – July 27: Super Heroes
  • July 30 – August 3: Let’s Rock Out!

For the duration of the summer, the Alliance will present two educational gallery exhibitions to enrich camper experiences.

From June 1 – June 30, the Alliance invites campers to explore historical spaces and artifacts in new ways through its exhibition, Augmented Reality. With Augmented Reality, the Alliance will superimpose virtual world over what’s actually in front of you through cutting-edge technology.

The traveling Smithsonian Exhibition Hometown Teams: Sports in American Communities is on display from June 30 – Aug. 4. This project gives patrons an opportunity to share these stories, celebrate local legends and collect memorabilia from the community. The show provides educational initiatives about sports and ideals such as team work, fair play, leadership and respect.

For students in grades 6 -12, the Alliance also presents Musical Theatre Intensive, held at Broadway Palm’s rehearsal space in Royal Palm Plaza and offers students the unique opportunity to work with Broadway Palm’s resident Choreographer Amy McCleary and with actors from current Broadway Palm shows. Camp runs 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Daily arrival time 8:45 – 9 a.m. with no extended care available. There is a final performance each Friday at 3:00 p.m. Each week is $175 for Alliance Members or $220 for non-members. Camps run June 4 – 8 and July 9 – Aug. 3.

For more information on Summer Arts Camp or Musical Theatre Intensive Camp, visit or call 239-939-2787. You may become a member at to take advantage of discounts.

Teen volunteer and scholarship applications are also available. Volunteer positions are offered to students at least 14 years of age who want to gain experience and confidence through assisting the Summer Arts Camp Education Team. Scholarship applications are awarded on need and based on availability of funds. They are due by April 30 and rewarded by May 14.

Summer Arts Camp is kindly sponsored by Family Thrift Center in Fort Myers.