Discover Artists

Shown below is a list of area artists who are members of United Arts Collier.
Please note: All images are copyrighted by the artist. Reproduction of them is illegal without written permission from the artist.

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contemporary abstract painter – headed to our new art studio in Tanzania, East Africa, to paint with a whole new set of inspirations! Also developing art safari workshops

Cynthia Taft looks for human connections in her street and urban scenes, celebrating moments of shared emotions.  Whether in Naples or New York City or other cities, her photographs capture interesting light, urban design, and architecture to highlight the beauty of the scene and convey the emotion of people connecting and living their lives.

My work is influenced by painters I’ve admired for years from Holbein to Koons. Van Eyck to Freud.I’m also very fond of the painters that I studied as a young man. Painters like Motherwell, Stella, Riley, Johns, and Rothko.In some ways their type of painting is much more honest and the essence of painting. Rather than a fake attempt to suggest a three dimensional world on a two dimensional canvas.

Deborah Martin‘s current medium of choice is Encaustic. My encaustic surfaces are labored and develop over time. I try to preserve what’s underneath while creating something new with each layer. By scraping wax away, my process turns into an excavation, discovering colors, textures and images.

After moving to Florida from NY,  I began adding florals and nature into my repertoire but my style varies with my mood and what’s happening in and around me.    Lack of a consistent style and subject matter has been an obstacle in the past, now I see it as an asset.”

Donna Babcock‘s painting styles range from the most conservative, traditional landscapes, still lifes and portraits, to the most contemporary, non-objective interpretation of life and our lovely world. She also designs posters, logos and promotional materials.

Dora Knuteson is a Naples artist specializing in tropical, floral and coastal themes. Her work – inspired by the sunshine and beautiful beaches of southwest Florida – is characterized by its lively brushwork and complex layering of unique color. Artwork can be purchased online at or in person by appointment.

My photography journey has taken me from a simple hobby as a kid to the present digital age and social media outlets where I can share my photography vision with others to enjoy.

As I travel and shoot I work to create photographic Fine Art works that elicit a visceral reaction with my audience.This "Wow" factor opens the door to conversations raising the awareness of environmental and worldwide issues.As a Master Naturalist, my dream is to get people to respect and be moved to action by my work.. To join with others and  get  involved in saving the Ecosystems and wildlife that surround us before it is too late.

The importance of light and composition are two skills I am always working to improve. As well as capturing birds in flight. These take continuous practice and evaluation.

Dusty Holmes works with stoneware clay. Her pieces are hand built, using a slab which she painstakingly molds and shapes using various tools and techniques, giving her pieces form, function and beauty. Dusty says ” my work is greatly influenced by Mother Nature. I find the lines and textures found in nature are very complimentary to the clay itself.”

I work in oils and although I paint primarily landscapes and florals, some of my favorite paintings have been of pet pups. As an octogenarian, I am so fortunate to have such a wonderful and challenging activity that adds such joy to my life.

A native Florida artist, Emily has received recognition of her talent through numerous awards and honors. She was selected as the official artist of the tournament for master golfers held in Georgia each Spring. Emily is the only artist in the United States selected by the top three fine art publishers, and two of her images have been among the top 50 selling prints worldwide. She has exhibited at the High Museum in Atlanta, and was selected as an Outstanding American Woman in the Arts. Emily is a signature member of the Florida Watercolor Society, accepted into Watercolor U.S.A., and featured in the book, The Best of Watercolor.

Emme Eve started painting like many of us, as a child. That is when she fell in love with the process of creating. “I have a hard time choosing one medium because they all excite me, I’d love to try glassblowing, and even something like metal sculpture.Primarily a self-taught artist, taking classes and workshops around the world: Tokyo, Italy, Seattle, Boston, San Francisco, Bali, France, Mexico, and spending a lot of time in museums. Emme loves an artistic challenge and is always pushing herself to be a better artist. Inspired by Andy Warhol, Basquiat, Lichtenstein, Frida Kahlo, Picasso, and so many unknown artists around the world.

Gail Trent Risner‘s newest passion explores shape, color and composition in bold abstract acrylic paintings. She spent years as a muralist in Chicago, then moved to Naples and began painting landscapes, seascapes and quaint cottages, along with large scale florals. You may see her in action during Third on Canvas in February 2019.For additional information or to schedule a visit to her private studio cal or email.

There is a distinctive style that threads its way through Gareth’s work which is a mix of both beauty and emotion and invites the viewer to that exact spot…that suspended magical moment in time.

Originality, fueled by imagination is an essential aspect of my creative work. I feel that art must speak of its age and time. My art does this through the repetition of layered forms, formative color interaction, circular shapes, technical accuracy, and the illusion of synthetic structures. Form, space and color regularly occupy my thought. My process is fabrication, where I economically build closed and open high and low relief forms. The material I work with is wood, acrylic or acrylic latex paint and a sundry of other materials like handmade paper, metal, catkins and other accessible found materials . My work is Intuitive, introspective and to the best of my ability deliberate.

Saxophonist Gerald Augustin was born in 1988 in Fort Myers. FL He graduated from Cypress Lake High School and went on to study saxophone at Edison State University with Dennis Hill. Gerald received jazz instruction from the renowned Southwest Florida-based trumpeter Dan Miller, then from Gary Campbell at Florida International University in Miami.Gerald's improvising style draws on many sources—Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Stan Getz, Miles Davis and Louis Armstrong. He started playing professionally at the age of 16 and has performed throughout Florida for functions for major corporations, events and weddings, then recently at Carnegie Hall in New York. He has also appeared on the Norwegian Star cruise line.

Gerald's performing credits include Bobby Watson, Wycliff Gordon, Barbara Morrison, and Curtis Lundy.

Known in the artistic world as Gerhpe, a plastic artist with more than 30 years of experience specializing in oil and acrylic on canvas with styles that range from abstract to impressionism Gerhpe’s technique with brushes and spatulas captures vibrant colors and movement that are felt in each artwork.

Giampaolo Curreri was born and lived in Milano, Italy, he frequented art schools concluding with advertising and marketing degrees his professional education and becoming an advertising executive. With his family, he resided in San Francisco, California for 37 years before relocating in 2018 to Naples, Florida.

Gilles Peltier was born in Chicoutimi, Quebec, on April 15, 1946. After High School he worked for 12 years as a jeweler/manufacturer and was selling his creations throughout the Province.

In 1980, while pursuing his work as goldsmith, he discovered by accident that the Acrylic could be sculptured.  (He dropped his electric  drill on a Plexiglas display and the scratch gave him the idea to work with this material).

After eight years of research and constant practice on the material, in 1988 he finally presented his work to the public.  His first public showing was in Montreal at the Botanical Garden.  It was a success. After many Art Shows, Gilles is now known throughout Canada and the USA.

Gilles Peltier is a self-taught Artist.  With a steady hand and being familiar in setting diamonds, to give them thousand of reflections, he found a new way to express himself  on Acrylic.  He has received recognition throughout North America and his work is appreciated by collectors from all over the world.  He has won many awards in Canada and in the USA  and is now invited to exhibit his work in the most prestigious Wildlife Art Shows in North America.  

He was featured Artist at PBS (Expressions) in April and August 2003.

His work is also included at the Roger Williams Park Zoo, in Providence, Rhode Island,  He has 27 pieces in permanent exhibit in their Education Center since 2004.  Zoo visitors can enjoy the beauty of 27 works of art, all depicting varieties of birds and tropical fish created with incredible naturalistic detail.

He was featured artist (cover page) in Sunshine Artist, December 2005 issue.

His commitment to the preservation of the natural environment was very important to him.  Among the subjects are songbirds, wildfowl, waterfowl, Wildlife, natural scenes and many others.

He was a member of Ducks Unlimited, Audubon Society, The Conservancy, National Wildlife Federation and many others.

He passed away on September 29, 2016 after fighting a brain tumor called GLIOBLASTOMA MULTIFORM after 5 months of illness.  He will be missed by the Art World and all his family and friends.

Gloria Cocco Topczynski enjoys using acrylics with sometimes loose or precise brushstrokes to interpret her subjects. She finds her inspiration from the beach, landscapes, flowers and sill life. Her goal is for the viewer to be excited by the color and subject matter.

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UAC is the heart of the arts in Collier County and suffuses life into our community. It serves as Collier's arts umbrella, like a chamber of commerce for the arts, and a uniting thread through all the arts in our community. UAC develops mutually beneficial collaborations and partnerships among people, organizations, and businesses from all arts disciplines, which positively impact opportunities and growth for all in Collier and beyond.
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