Florida wildlife painter Robert Mier and his wife live on three acres of land near the St. Johns River and the Black Bear Preserve. He doesn’t have far to go for inspiration. When he’s not exhibiting in art shows throughout the country, Mier paints and teaches classes from his studio at Gallery on First in historic downtown Sanford. The Gallery will present an exhibit of his work with an opening reception set for Friday, Aug. 26 from 6-9 p.m. The Gallery is at 211 E. First St., and the exhibit runs through Thursday, Sept. 22. Mier’s realistic scenes of wildlife and wetlands bring the viewer up close and personal with his view of the real Florida. The winner of numerous awards, Mier produces vibrant images of natural lands, birds and animals that remind us of a simpler time before gated communities and amusement parks. The opening is free. Call 407-323-2774 or visit galleryonfirst.com
Red Chair Affair
Central Florida’s cultural season has its “official kick-off” this Saturday, Aug. 27 at 8 p.m. when the Seventh Annual Red Chair Affair presents the official opening of the 2011-12 cultural season in Central Florida. This is the event that celebrates Central Florida performers and artists, and it’s our ticket to sample the incredible range of artistic offerings found throughout Central Florida. Visit RedChairProject.com or call 407-872-2382.
Disney princesses on ice
It’s time for the young ones to pull out those princess dresses they had to have at the Magic Kingdom as Disney On Ice presents the ultimate Disney princess event at the Amway Center. Called “Dare to Dream”, the show invites children of all ages to get tangled up in Disney’s newest ice show and the first Disney On Ice show to play the new Amway Center. In the hair-raising escapade “Tangled”, Rapunzel, along with her companions Flynn and Maximus, embark on a journey that takes adventure to new lengths. Then we “boogie to the beat of the bayou” with Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen from “The Princess and the Frog” in a musical journey. Then dreams become reality as Cinderella meets Prince Charming, with a special glass slipper. All your favorite princesses take to the ice in a spectacular finale at the ultimate Princess event. Experience the beauty and the magic when Disney On Ice comes to Orlando for five performances from Sept. 9-11. The new Amway Center is at 400 W. Church St. Visit DisneyOnIce.com or call 800-745-3000.
And not to be missed …
No one handles the combination of music and satirical comedy better than the wacky crew at the Winter Park Playhouse, making their current musical — “The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!)” — a not-to-be-missed performance. Running through Saturday, Sept. 17, “The Musical!” takes satirical shots at the styles of famous composers with a wildly talented cast who are graced with great voices and a gift for funny. Call 407-645-0145 or visit winterparkplayhouse.org
And speaking of witty looks at the world of theater, this is the final week to see the new comedy “The Understudy” presented by the Mad Cow Theatre. A Hollywood action hero, a Broadway setting and a jilted bride create an enjoyable collision of characters performed through Sunday, Aug. 28. Call 407-297-8788 or visit madcowtheatre.com
Tony Robbin: A Retrospective at the Orlando Museum of Art (running through Sunday, Oct. 30) is the real deal in computer-generated art. Including four-dimensional objects on canvas, brilliant watercolor prints and a sculpture, the works are complex (but oh-so-pleasing) layers of geometric forms. Call 407-896-4231 or visit omart.org
Who is Garrick?
Josh Garrick is a writer, photographer, educator, and fine art curator. He is a member of the Curatorial Council for the Museum of Florida Art. Garrick can be reached at [email protected] or 407-522-3906.