Verde: Poetics of Shade

On view February 9 through July 24, 2022

Nneka Jones Destroy the Myth
Nneka Jones (Trinidadian, b. 1998) Destroy the Myth. Embroidery. 16×20 inches. Tampa Museum of Art, 2021.035

New, fresh, calm, balance, growth, vitality, reliability, practical, nurturing, loyal, adaptable, harmony, safety, fertility, environment, finance, ambition, endurance.

The exhibition Verde: Poetics of Shade features five artists regional to the Tampa Bay area as an introduction and a celebration of their work in a variety of mediums, which include: painting, ceramics, sculpture, and embroidery on canvas. Artists, Nneka Jones, Kendra Frorup, Princess Smith, Shannon Elyse, and Jodi Minnis represent the local community through shared experiences and divergence in visual art. The artwork in Verde speaks to growth and expansion as well as timeless artistic expression. It speaks to feminine energy and artistic contributions.

Verde: Poetics of Shade is presented in partnership with the Tampa Chapter of The Links, Inc.

In creating this exhibition, the curators explored how shades of colors inspire different perceptions. Even within the color green, each shade can bring to mind different ideas. Take some time to reflect on the definitions of shades of green below. Explore the exhibition to see which works and which artists you think align with each shade. You will be surprised to find that even in shades, there are nuances. Did you find any works or artists that recall more than one of these shades? Which shades and why?

Provocation, politics, social justice, excitement. These works explore current as well as longstanding societal issues and norms. They represent excitement, change and joy amid the turbulence. Chartreuse begs us to dance in the storm.

These works speak to wisdom, self-awareness, healing, protection, and native cultures. They represent history and places of origin.

The symbolism here represents the beginning. We explore peace, promise, fertility, prosperity, immortality, and success. As well, the olive tree is linked with the renaissance and the light.

Serenity, quiet, shade and whimsy speak through these pieces. Here we imagine, dream, and explore mother earth and calm. Tranquility is represented as well as the whisper that is a smile and not laughter.


Shannon Elyse Curry was born in Carmel, California and currently resides in South Tampa, Florida. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Studio Art and Art History as an honors scholar at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, where she studied under Dr. Fahamu Pecou.

Kendra Frorup was born in the Bahamas and received a bachelor’s degree in Art from the University of Tampa and an MFA from Syracuse University. Frorup is an international artist with a research focus on the global conversation about connections and identity in art.

Nneka Jones was born in Port of Spain in Trinidad and Tobago. She is a multidisciplinary artist exploring both large- and small-scale pieces. Jones’ work comments on social and environmental injustice, advocating for the protection of women and girls of color. Jones holds a BFA in Art from the University of Tampa.

Jodi Minnis is a multidisciplinary artist investigating the intersection of gender, race, and culture, scrutinizing the traditional representations and tropes around Bahamian women as a reclamation of Black Caribbean womanhood. Minnis was born in Nassau, The Bahamas, and holds an associate degree in Fine Arts from the College of The Bahamas and a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree from the University of Tampa.

Princess Smith was born in Los Angeles, California. She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Tampa and a Master’s in Fine Arts from the University of South Florida. Smith’s work focuses heavily on portraiture that explores her culture, identity, encourages self-love and expression.