According to Jacksonville artist Kathy Stark, the First Coast is home to one of the largest urban park systems in the United States, yet many people in the area are unaware of the parks’ existence. So, she decided to use her talents to change that and educate the community.
Stark launched in February 2017 the “Wilderness of North Florida’s Parks,” a 120-page, full color book that features a series of large-scale watercolor paintings illustrating the wildness and beauty of city, state and national parks and preserves within one hour of Jacksonville. She presented her work on the parks to the Rotary Club of Ponte Vedra Beach on Thursday, Jan. 25.
“We live in a beautiful area,” Stark told the local Rotary club at Marsh Landing Country Club. “I love painting it.”
The Jacksonville artist features all 60 area parks in her book, including Timucuan Preserve, Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park, Little Talbot Island State Park, Cedar Point and more. Stark includes 19 watercolor park paintings in the project, as well as several sketchbook journal pages that incorporate each park’s history, features, nonprofit associations and trail map.
“A unique blend of art and education resulting in a family-oriented book and traveling exhibit,” said Stark on her book’s Facebook page. “Both will show the quality of life in Northeast Florida to business investors, visitors and locals.”
Stark has displayed her park project at Jacksonville’s Museum of Science & History (MOSH) and the Thrasher Horne-Center on the campus of St. Johns River State College-Orange Park. The work will also be exhibited at the Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach and The Bolles School in the near future.
The “Wilderness of North Florida’s Parks” book is $25 in paperback and $40 in hardback. Individual prints of paintings are also for sale. Visit http://www.kathystark.com/#home for more information.