The KidzCreate Gallery of the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County brings children and professional artists together to create art. Here, children created Horses Horses Horses, the original of which is now on display in New South Wales Australia.
The KidzCreate Gallery is an outreach program of the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County. Art is created with children from the human services community, the county school system and the exceptional education system. More than1,000 children are served each year though exhibit programs.
This travelling art gallery is the first gallery in Tampa designed to specifically showcase and value children’s art. According to Paula Allen, with the Children’s Board, “The KidzCreate Gallery is unique in the United States. Hillsborough County has a gallery that creates large exhibits with professional artists and children that focuses on messages that need to get out to the community.” Allen added, “Through the children’s experiences, it draws people in and they learn the message.”
The KidzCreate Gallery is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture. Allen said, “The state recognized that we do something unique.”
Much of the focus on the creation of the art is through an emphasis on literacy. Allen said, “Art is more than a show. It is a way to teach everything from literacy to math.”
The public can see the exhibits at the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County, located at 1002 E. Palm Ave. in Tampa, or as it travels around to surrounding counties and even to other countries. One of the current exhibits Horses Horses Horses is currently on display in New South Wales, Australia.
When the Children’s Board building was built in 2004, it was designed in such a way that the artwork could be displayed throughout the ground level. It is an inspiring site to see art created by children and professionally displayed in a gallery-like setting.
Dan Casseday, of the Children’s Board, said, “The KidzCreate Gallery is an extension of the main goal of the Children’s Board which is helping children succeed in school.” The Children’s Board goals are healthy births, development and success in school.