Friends Of Loxahatchee Invite You To Plein Air Exhibit At Visitor Center And Call For Photo Contest

The Friends of Loxahatchee continue to show the many sides of this National Wildlife Refuge that is right in our own backyard.  The Plein Air Palm Beach Artists hosted a paint-out at Loxahatchee and are exhibiting 33 paintings until April 14th at the Visitor’s Center.  Beginning on May 1st, the Exhibit will focus on Photography at Loxahatchee. The Rickie Report shares the details of the Plein Air Exhibit, the Photography Contest and Exhibit at this National treasure, to which everyone is invited. 





Friends of the Arthur R. Marshall


National Wildlife Refuge

Invite You:


Plein Air Paintings:  

Now through April 14, 2016



Photography Exhibit: 

Opening Reception/Awards

Sunday, May 1, 2016

1 PM

Wine and cheese reception to follow


The Visitor Center

Open daily 9-4

The Loxahatchee NWR is at 10216 Lee Road Boynton Beach 33473

The main entrance and Visitor Center are located at:

10216 Lee Road      Boynton Beach, FL 33473



Main entrance: 2 miles south of Boynton Beach Blvd, West off US 441/SR7

Plein Air at Loxahatchee



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Organized by Ralph Papa, Donna Walsh and Plein Air Palm Beach Artists



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The Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge preserves a portion of the once vast northern Everglades.





It provides habitat and protection for endangered wildlife such as the snail kite and the wood stork and the formerly endangered American alligator.


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It is 143,954 acres of northern Everglades and cypress swamp, protecting the integrity of the remaining Everglades ecosystem.







“There are no other Everglades in the world. They are, they have always been, one of the unique regions of the earth; remote, never wholly known. Nothing anywhere else is like them.” – Marjory Stoneman Douglas





Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge 33rd Annual Photography Contest

Sponsored by The Friends of the Loxahatchee Refuge


 Photo contest coordinator is Cathy Patterson, and photo judge panel from the Everglades Photo Society.

For additional information AND MODEL RELEASE FORM

please visit

Deadline: Entries will be accepted from Saturday, January 9, 2016 to Sunday, April 17, 2016. Entries can be dropped off or mailed to the Refuge Visitor Center. Entries sent by mail must be received no later than Saturday, April 16, 2016.

Rules: Entries that do not comply with the rules will be disqualified.

  • ß  The contest is open to all photographers except members of the Everglades Photographic Society.
  • ß  All entries must be taken within boundaries of the Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge (LNWR), StormwaterTreatment Area 1 (STA-1W and STA-1E), Wellington Environmental Park, Strazzulla Tract Wetlands, and Water Conservation Area 2(WCA 2A and WCA 2B).
  • ß  Each submission is limited to a total of no more than 5 images.  No more than 2 submissions per photographer.
  • ß  Submitted entries must be the original work of the photographer, and the photographer must own the copyright to the image. The photographer retains the copyright of the submitted images but must agree to allow the LNWR to use and publish the submitted entries without further compensation to the copyright holder.
  • ß  Photos that have won awards in previous LNWR photo contests may not be resubmitted. Photos that have been published or sold may not be submitted.
  • ß  Photos containing recognizable images of people must be accompanied by a model release. More information about the model release and the release form can be obtained at the contest web site:
  • ß  Submissions must be digital, and they must be submitted on a CD, DVD, or USB flash drive. Photos that were taken with a film camera must be scanned in and submitted on a CD, DVD, or USB flash drive. Digital support is available if needed by contacting the EvergladesPhotographic Society at
  • ß  High-resolution JPEG images, measuring at least 2000 pixels on the longest side, may be copied on as many CDs, DVDs, or USB flash drives as needed. These will be the images used for final judging and publication/exhibition. If you prefer, you may simply submit the original JPEG image as taken by the camera.
  • ß  Each image must be labeled with your first and last name, image title, and category it is to enter. For example: FirstLast-Title-Category.jpg. If you know the common name of the species photographed, please include it in your title.
  • ß  Each CD, DVD, or USB flash drive must bear the photographer’s name, phone number, and e-mail address. Media used to submit entries will not be returned.All photographs, except those submitted as Artistic, should accurately reflect the subject matter and the scene as it appeared. Photos that have been digitally altered beyond standard optimization will be disqualified. Acceptable: adjustments to color, contrast, brightness and sharpness; removal of dust and scratches; cropping; black and white conversions. High Dynamic Range imaging is acceptable in all categories. Stitching is acceptable in Landscapes. Unacceptable, except for Artistic: composites (combination of two or more photos, not of the same scene); the addition, duplication, deletion or moving of objects in the photos; digital effects that do not show the scene in its natural way.1 People may be included in photos in all categories except Avian, Fauna, and Flora.

Categories: Entries will be judged on technical excellence, originality, creativity, visual impact, and artistic merit. All decisions of the judges are final.
ß Avian – Birds in their natural habitat.

ß Fauna – Animals (other than Birds) in their natural habitat, including close-ups of invertebrates.

ß Flora – Plants in their natural habitat, including close-ups of flowers, fungi, lichen, and algae.

ß Landscapes – Expansive and dramatic views of the land and its features.

ß Artistic – Artistic compositions in nature both natural and manipulated in post processing (infrared, unlimited digital manipulation).

ß Youth – Any entry of up to 5 photographs by photographers under 18 years of age. Each photograph must fit into one of the categories above.

Entry Fee: A check or money order in the amount of $20 (US) must be included with your entry and made out to Friends of the Loxahatchee Refuge. Friends of the Loxahatchee Refuge members and Refuge Staff may enter the contest for $10 (US). Participants in the youth category may enter the contest for free.

Entry Form: Each submission MUST be accompanied by a completed entry form with ALL information clearly filled out.

Submission: Entries can be dropped off or mailed to the Refuge Visitor Center at:

Prizes: If there are less than ten entries in any category, the judges may choose not to award prizes in that category. One grand prize of $150 (US) will be awarded. Awards for each category:

ß 1st Place – $75 ß 2nd Place – $50 ß 3rd Place – $25

Winning images may be cropped to 8×10 or other sizes for exhibition at the Refuge Visitor Center and other venues.

1 As stated by the National Wildlife Federation Photo Contest, with small modifications.

Loxahatchee Photo Contest
Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge 10216 Lee Road
Boynton Beach, Florida 33473-4797

Entry Information:

Sponsored by The Friends of the Loxahatchee Refuge

Contest Entry Form




Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge 33rd Annual Photography Contest


Title or Species Name






Categories: Artistic, Avian, Fauna, Flora, Landscape, Youth



I am a Friends Member, Refuge Volunteer, or Refuge Staff Member (Entry Fee $10)

I am entering in the Youth (Under 18) category (FREE)

None of the above (Entry Fee $20)


Entering the 2016 contest grants the Friends of the Loxahatchee Refuge and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service the right to reproduce, modify, publish, and publicly display the submitted photographs in print or electronic form for educational and promotional purposes without compensation and without notice to the photographer. The submitted photographs will become the property of the Refuge. All other rights to these images will be retained by the photographer. Photos containing recognizable images of people must be accompanied by a model release.



More information about the model release and the release form can be obtained at the contest web site:



Entries will be accepted at the Refuge Visitor Center on Lee Road between January 9, 2016 and April 17, 2016. Entries sent by mail must be received no later than April 16, 2016. Please note: The contest ends on a Sunday.

I understand and agree to the contest rules and conditions and certify that all photo entries were produced by me. Signature: Date:

For additional information please visit

For participants under the age of 18, a parent or legal guardian must complete the following:

I have read the contest rules and his/her participation is with my permission.

Print Name  __________________

Signature _________________________

Date _______________



The Refuge is open from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. every day.

The Visitor Center is open every day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is closed on Christmas Day and Thanksgiving.

Pedestrian …….. $1.00
Several kinds of entrance passes can be purchased for those who frequently visit National Wildlife Refuges and other federal recreational fee areas.
An annual pass to this Refuge can be purchased for $12.

No pets or camping are allowed on the Refuge.

Contact Information

Friends of the Loxahatchee Refuge
P.O. Box 6777
Delray Beach, FL 33482-6777
Email Us –
Visitor Center, Gift Shop, General Information:
Tel: (561) 734-8303





For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


OSGS Presents Special Jimmy Lee Sudduth Exhibit

OSGS continues to stretch its wings and bring a wide variety of artwork to its walls.  The Rickie Report urges you not to miss the current exhibit of Jimmy Lee Sudduth’s work at this Northwood gallery.  Jimmy Lee’s paintings bring us back to a genre most would call Folk Art.  In fact, his work was prominent at the Smithsonian Institution’s Bicentennial Festival of American Folk Life.  His Alabama roots are intertwined with those of OSGS owners, Evelyn Ortiz-Smykla and Jonathon Ortiz Smykla.  His message is universal.  Paint, create, celebrate life!  Here are the details and a sneak peek.









Presents Paintings by

Jimmy Lee Sudduth


500 Northwood Road    W.Palm Beach, FL




This Jimmy Lee Sudduth Exhibition is different from your previous ones.  Please tell our readers more about its significance.


We recently have had some conversations with a private art collector about a collaboration with OSGS.  The conversation went well enough that we’ve been offered three Jimmy Lee Sudduth paintings to exhibit here at OSGS. The name may not ring a bell (as there are many artists in the world) but he’s an artist that not only hits close to home for myself but also with the trending art market for ‘outsider art’, ‘folk art’, and ‘self-taught Southern artists’.  Jimmy Lee is no longer living as he passed away in 2007 (in his 90s). His connection with OSGS is that we have roots in Alabama and Jimmy Lee was born and raised in Fayette, Alabama which is where he spent his entire life.  Also, our exhibited pieces will not be for sale. 






Jimmy Lee Sudduth's "Three Boys"

Jimmy Lee Sudduth’s “Three Boys”




Art lovers will have an unexpected opportunity to see this historically significant artwork at OSGS.   Please share some of the highlights of Sudduth’s contributions to the art world


Jimmy Lee began collecting pigments from clay, earth, rocks and plants for use in his finger paintings. He used his fingers because “they never wore out.” His numerous works were typically executed on found surfaces such as plywood, doors and boards from demolished buildings. He experimented with mixing his pigments with various binders to make them adhere better, including sugar, soft drinks, instant coffee, and caulk.






Jimmy Lee Sudduth's "African Princess"

Jimmy Lee Sudduth’s “African Princess”


Notable Exhibitions:

1968 – Stillman College (Tuscaloosa, AL) *first exhibition
1971 – Kentuck Festival of the Arts (Northport, AL)
1976 – Smithsonian Institution’s Bicentennial Festival of American Folk Life
*Jimmy Lee played harmonica along with exhibition
1980 – The Today Show & 60 Minutes feature
1995 – Alabama Art Award
1995 – New Orleans Museum of Art (Artist In Residence)
2005 – Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts (Montgomery, AL)
Current Collections:
Smithsonian Institution
High Museum of Art
Corcoran Gallery
Birmingham Museum of Art
House of Blues



We will reference in writing some highlights and are providing a link to the Smithsonian’s website/collection of Jimmy Lee Sudduth’s work:




 Many people consider “recycling” and “up-cycling”  a recent phenomenon.  Clearly, this is not the case.


He was one of the early masters of southern self-taught art. Jimmy Lee painted with his finger which he called his brush. That ‘brush’ would never wear out and would die along with him. Although it is commonly believed that Sudduth’s early paintings were executed exclusively in mud and found pigments, such as motor oil or plant juices, in fact, his earliest known paintings contain large amounts of house paint. Anything he could find or get from his helpful neighbors right across the railroad tracks where he worked as a gardener to the Moore family. No one knew, but it was them who really supported Jimmy Lee. His next-door-neighbor, Jack Black, helped Jimmy Lee become the artist he is today through his love and commitment of Alabama art. As his fame grew, dealers advised Sudduth on ways to make his works more permanent and more colorful, and by the 1990s, no longer able to collect his own materials, he began using commercially-sold acrylic paints applied with sponge brushes onto wood panels prepared with a flat black ground.





Jimmy Lee Sudduth's, "The Barn"

Jimmy Lee Sudduth’s, “The Barn”



We understand there is some personal history with Jimmy Lee Sudduth.


Jimmy Lee’s roots and path are all too familiar with both Jonathon and Evelyn’s experiences over the course of 30+ years living in the state of Alabama. Meeting, studying and being a part of Alabama’s fine arts provided first hand insight into the Southern vernacular of life, art and design while engaging in direct relationships with those that were rooted in rural Alabama. The OSGS family was schooled, lived and worked in Northport, Tuscaloosa, Birmingham, Auburn, and Montgomery, Alabama for around 20 years.



Jonathon shares, “I was six years old when my Mom was in graduate school at the University of Alabama and she took me to meet Jimmy Lee Sudduth at his home in Fayette, Alabama. I do recall the visit well and remember the home, the dirt roads and his paintings. For me, at that age, it was an experience that was solidified because of the deeply rooted rural Alabama area where he lived and his enthusiasm about his work and our interest in his work.  We are very excited about this opportunity to share art that reflects places and experiences we hold near our hearts”.


**some information gathered from the Smithsonian American Art Museum and Wikipedia.



For more information about this exhibit or other art being shown at OSGS, please contact Evelyn Ortiz Smykla & Jonathon Ortiz-Smykla at

OSGS Ortiz-Smykla|Gallery-Studio

p: 561-833-2223



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For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


Global Call for Endangered Art Exhibit at Art Basel

What is “endangered”?  Ecosystems, animals, plants and the environment.  This is your opportunity to share your concern in the world of Art Basel – an International Art Fair in Miami.  The Rickie Report shared a Call to Artists last year, for Art Basel and the Endangered Art Show which benefits the Center for Great Apes.  The response was tremendous.  This year, we share this GLOBAL Call which has been expanded to Artwork, Photography and Wearable Art!  We urge everyone to respond and keep us posted so we can share your good news!  If your artwork does not relate to this subject and you know other artists who work does, please share this Call!











ApedAd Call to Artists Aug 2014



Apes2014Call to Artists Aug 2014


Please see full details at









Meet Knuckles:

My Character:  Special, Inspirational, Engaging

My Birthday: October 4, 1999

My Story

Knuckles arrived at the Center for Great Apes from a California entertainment compound when he was only two years old. He was believed to have been affected with cerebral palsy due to a lack of oxygen during his birth. His challenges were motor and muscle control, a weakness on the left side, and a lazy eye that didn’t allow him to focus on things.




Most two-year-old chimpanzees swing around actively and climb to tall heights, but Knuckles could not climb and barely walked when he arrived. When he was placed somewhere, he would just sit there until someone moved him. Although he couldn’t easily feed himself, he would eat if someone fed him.



Early MRI tests and EEG scans suggested that he was not likely to advance much and would stay the same or get worse. However, Knuckles has made steady progress and our expectations for him are all good.




Center for Great Apes Sanctuary

Center for Great Apes Sanctuary


After years of help from several dedicated volunteers and staff… as well as therapy from occupational and physical therapists who donated their time to help Knuckles, he has learned to feed himself, climb up and down steps, and pull himself up on special swings to hang upside down and play. He walks wherever he wants to go and occasionally runs when playing games of chase with other chimpanzees. He is very aware and cognizant of activities around him, likes to play and be tickled, and is very affectionate.



From the time of his arrival, he was introduced to Grub’s group through the mesh while still an infant. Grub, Toddy, Kenya, Brooks, and Noelle seemed to know Knuckles was “special” and have always been gentle with him. He eventually began having play sessions one-on-one inside the habitat with each of these chimpanzees, and can now tolerate about an hour of play, grooming, and running before he is exhausted. Every day, Knuckles spends time with Grub’s group standing outside the habitat where they can see him and touch him. Grub and Noelle are especially good with Knuckles and spend sitting next to him frequently grooming him. When the little female chimpanzee Kodua arrived from Hollywood at age two, she was introduced to the then 5-year-old Knuckles, and she also became one of his frequent playmates.



Three-Story Chimp Habitat

Three-Story Chimp Habitat


Our goal has always been to get Knuckles to the point where he can have the companionship of other chimpanzees. Now an adolescent (and is more than 120 pounds), his therapy from staff is limited. But with the recent construction of a special indoor/outdoor enclosure suited to the needs of handicapped and geriatric apes, Knuckles has the opportunity to live in his own habitat where the other chimpanzees can spend all day next to him, or short periods inside the enclosure playing with him… or even overnight visits in Knuckles’ nighthouse.


Taking on the challenge of raising a severely handicapped chimpanzee had to be carefully considered when we were approached to take Knuckles at the sanctuary. But, he has continued to exceed most expectations of his potential and abilities and has enriched the lives of not only the chimpanzees he interacts with, but also the staff, volunteers, and visitors who have been inspired by him.



Orangutans play in 25 foot tall arch with far reaching view



All proceeds, including entry fee, will go directly to the Center for Great Apes, a sanctuary for orangutans and chimpanzees . This is a great opportunity for artists to highlight what they feel is ENDANGERED, be a part of the excitement of Art Basel week and support a wonderful sanctuary.


The Center for Great Apes’ mission is to provide a permanent sanctuary for orangutans and chimpanzees who have been rescued or retired from the entertainment industry, from research, or who are no longer wanted as pets. The Center provides care with dignity in a safe, healthy, and enriching environment for great apes in need of lifetime care. The Center for Great Apes is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and all contributions are tax deductible as allowed by law.




For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420