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Water’s Margins

Over the last four decades, Gainesville-based multimedia artist Margaret Ross Tolbert has traveled extensively throughout areas of Florida and many international destinations that boast exceptional springs, waterways and caves.

“Water’s Margins” brings together a selection of Tolbert’s paintings created following visits and plunges into these waters, including some in Marion, Levy and Citrus counties. The idea of the margins between humans and water reflects the interactive fluidity of the crystal-clear waters that flow from the Floridan aquifer.

From large-scale paintings to more intimate works created underwater on pieces of slate, Tolbert uses an array of kaleidoscopic blues and earth tones to express her passion for and understanding of these unique subaquatic environments.

Tolbert says, “The paradisiacal Springs of North Florida are my paintings’ subject and metaphor. The springs paintings begin on site at the water’s edge and often in the water. I swim in the springs, I sketch underwater; I am inspired to write when I am beside them.”

Ranging from the great religious traditions of the world to philosophical treatises to scientific discoveries to Florida spring’s kayaking, the importance of water is never far from reach. Water composes over half the earth’s surface and atmosphere which is approximately the amount in each human’s body. As such, the exhibition invites you to come on in as the water’s fine.

(pictured) Margaret Ross Tolbert, “Lost Springs,” 2017, Oil on canvas, 72 x 48 in. Collection of Stathe Karahalios. Photo by Randy Batista


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Take a virtual tour of “Water’s Margins: Painting of Florida’s Springs by Margaret Ross Tolbert.”


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