Artist Marty Kledzik has turned his office at the University of South Florida into a bit of a personal art gallery.
“They are great conversation pieces for people who come in,” said Kledzik, who works as a financial manager in the Department of Child and Family Studies at USF. “They are good conversation starters.”
Although he has been drawing most of his life, Kledzik said he didn’t get into acrylic painting until about 10 years ago when he took a class at the Life Enrichment Center in Carrollwood.
Kledzik’s eclectic art is on display through March 29 at The Bunker, 1907 N. 19th St., Tampa. His art exhibit is simply called, “My First Solo.”
Kledzik and his wife, Peggy, are empty-nesters who have raised four children. They now have seven grandchildren. Kledzik grew up in Orlando, but spent his married life in the Tampa area.
“When your kids grow up and take off you have more time for yourself,” he said, adding it’s been fun to try different styles of art.
They live in Egypt Lake, just south of Carrollwood.
“Growing up, I drew mostly landscapes and cityscapes,” he said. “With painting, it gives me an outlet to express myself and see the effect of decisions I make with colors and styles and how they work with each other. I always learn something with every painting I do.”
Kledzik also displays his artwork in his wife’s office at USF where she is a coordinator for Students with Disabilities Services.
Tim Gibbons of Seminole Heights, who coordinates the art show shows at The Bunker, said Kledzik is a natural artist without formal training other than what he has received at the Life Enrichment Center.
“His acrylic paintings are richly painted landscapes which lure the viewer into the painting,” Gibbons said. “His perspectives provide unusual views of the landscapes in his imagination and vision: ghostly trees, isolated mysterious forests, joyous daisies, highway man style beaches and umbrella-filled resorts are just a few examples of his work in the show.”
Gibbons said Kledzik’s art work has received ribbons at the Florida State Fair.
“Marty continues to grow and explore other artistic areas in his imagination, currently expressing thought imagery which stirs the viewer to their own interpretations in his work,” Gibbons said.
The Bunker, which serves sandwiches, salads, desserts, coffee, teas, wine and beer, is open Mondays through Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Thursdays 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. for Live Music Night and Fridays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Bunker is also open Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.