University of South Florida home page

USF Main Links: A-Z Index | Campus Directory | Calendars | Search

USF Home > College of The Arts > Institute for Research in Art


The USF Institute for Research in Art (IRA) is the umbrella organization for the Contemporary Art Museum, Graphicstudio, Public Art program, and Art in Health. Part of the University of South Florida College of The Arts, the IRA is dedicated to an international artists’ residency program that brings to the University and Tampa Bay community today’s most accomplished and influential artists working in the international art arena. Exhibitions, collection development, publication of limited edition graphics and sculpture multiples, commissioned public art works, interdisciplinary arts research, lectures, symposia, workshops and special events are designed to foster awareness about the role of contemporary artists in shaping our culture and society. Participating artists represent the full and diverse spectrum of contemporary art practice including, but not limited to, painting, sculpture, photography, electronic media, and performance.


Architecture of Power: A Story About Cuban Marble

Cuban marble has a rich and eclectic heritage that mirrors the country’s social and political past. Cities such as Havana were built following the 1573 Ordinance of Spanish King Philip II that required a Spanish style cathedral, administrative buildings, and a governor’s palace to line the central plaza. The Cuban builders and craftsman infused the classical Spanish architecture with regional designs and used local marble from the renowned quarries formed by Cuba’s unique geological structure.
Read More >

The Life of the Performer Behind the Scenes: Guest Post by Natalie Bohin

Hernan Bas, an artist from Miami that currently resides in Detroit, describes his work and interest in male adolescence as descended from his own journey in discovering his sexuality: “The whole idea of fag limbo to me begins with a character or an identity that doesn’t quite fit the clichés that one would expect for a young homosexual character. I wasn’t necessarily the young, flamboyant gay—I didn’t fit that cliché, but I didn’t fit the male, straight-boy cliché either”
Read More >

A Monumental Young Elvis Made Digital: Guest Post by Jeanie Ambrosio

For the David Claerbout exhibition at USF’s Contemporary Art Museum, the exhibition designer in conjunction with the artist’s studio has formed the space to incorporate four video installations by the artist. Three of these installations produce a large-scale immersive experience for the viewer, while the work displayed at the smallest scale, Radio Piece (Hong Kong) (2015), exists at the size of a standard flat screen to accommodate the intimate experience it produces.
Read More >

Cotton Comes to Harlem
Cotton Comes to Harlem

On June 22, 2017, USFCAM presented a free film screening of Cotton Comes to Harlem as part of its programming for Black Pulp! Noel Smith, USFCAM’s Curator of Latin American and Caribbean Art, provided a biographical sketch of Chester Himes, the author of the book on which the film was based, and Cheryl Rodriguez, Director of the USF Institute on Black Life, introduced and contextualized the film.
Read More >

Angel Acosta
Cuban Art Impressions: Guest Post by Eric Ondina

I am not a naturally talented artist. My talent was inherited from a privileged upbringing which granted me the time to selfishly pursue egotistic fancies such as the visual arts. Yet I am not a thief. I am the progeny of a society preoccupied by the fulfilment of middle class comfort, and permeated by a culture synonymous with cynicism, sensual excess, rootless cosmopolitism, and materialistic obsession. My culture is a dark one, which as an artist I strive to illuminate.
Read More >

Emory Douglas - The Black Panther Party Newspaper
Prints Providing a Catalyst for Change:
A Guest Post by Erin Hughes, MA Candidate

On June 2nd, two new exhibitions opened at USF’s Contemporary Art Museum, bringing with them a full schedule of events throughout their stay in Tampa. Black Pulp! and Woke! bring with them endless opportunities to engage with and discuss the current status of race relations in our nation. Black Pulp! contains over one hundred years of African-American representation in print works, while Woke! contains works by William Villalongo and Mark Thomas Gibson, the curators of Black Pulp!. Between the two galleries, all who enter are sure to be engaged by the striking works from over a century of print.
Read More >

Felandus Thames - I'm Neutral
To Be Faceless: Caricature & Racial Identity:
A Guest Post by Tyra Mishell

Whenever I see black face or any racist caricature of black people, I am reminded of how the world has perceived and continues to perceive black people. It does not shock me as much now as when I was small and was first made aware of my blackness as spectacle. Upon looking, I am usually greeted with the same feeling of grossness and humiliation as I would if someone were to catch me in the most unflattering position. However, when I went to see the Black Pulp! exhibition and came across Felandus Thames’ I'm Neutral, I felt the warmth that one experiences when they look upon the beautiful thing.
Read More >

Inside Art
InsideART: USFCAM’s Art and Social Studies Curriculum

As part of its mission, the USF Contemporary Art Museum (CAM) has developed an innovative web-based visual literacy program that integrates social studies and contemporary art in an examination and discussion of critical societal issues.
Read More >

Madeline Arrendale - Intern Perspective
Madeline Arrendale’s Graphicstudio Internship

My experience at Graphicstudio was amazing. Everyone welcomed me with open arms and I learned something new every day. Not only did I have the opportunity to meet a few artists and learn under professional printers, but I was given the liberty to work on a personal project of my own.
Read More >

Sandra Cinto
Sandra Cinto at Graphicstudio

While in New York City for the 2013 IFPDA Print Fair, Margaret Miller encountered the work of Sandra Cinto at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery. Piece of Silence included cellos and violins painted white and intricately decorated with black ink line drawings, mounted to the gallery walls that had been covered with music staves. Struck with the delicate beauty of the sculptures, drawings and paintings, Margaret invited Cinto to Graphicstudio to make prints.
Read More >

Robert Mapplethorpe, Tampa Orchid, 1986. photogravure/screenprint; 21-1/2 x 35-1/4 inches; Edition 60
Robert Mapplethorpe at Graphicstudio

Robert Mapplethorpe is the subject of much renewed interest as the J. Paul Getty Museum and LACMA present complementary exhibitions which form Robert Mapplethorpe: The Perfect Medium. This retrospective in two parts coincides with the release of HBO Pictures documentary Mapplethorpe: Look at the Pictures.
Read More >

College of The Arts

The College of The Arts is the creative center of the University of South Florida’s Tampa campus. Dedicated to preparing students for careers in architecture, community design, art, art history, music, theatre, and dance, the College provides students with a hands-on learning environment where real-world exhibition, performance, and practice opportunities abound. Situated in a culturally rich metropolitan area, students and faculty participate in Arts research through interdisciplinary work, global explorations, and local community engagement in Tampa Bay.

University of South Florida

The University of South Florida, established in 1956 and located in Tampa, is a high-impact, global research university dedicated to student success. The USF System includes three, separately accredited institutions: USF; USF St. Petersburg; and USF Sarasota-Manatee. Serving more than 49,000 students, the USF System has an annual budget of $1.6 billion and an annual economic impact of $4.4 billion. USF is ranked in the Top 30 nationally for research expenditures among public universities, according to the National Science Foundation. In 2016, the Florida Legislature designated USF as “Emerging Preeminent,” placing USF in an elite category among the state’s 12 public universities. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference.

Upcoming Events

Thursday, February 22 | 6pm
ART Thursday: ¡Salsa Social!
USF Contemporary Art Museum, CAM

Tuesday, February 27
6pm - Danay Suarez / Cuban American Student Association Reception
USF Contemporary Art Museum, CAM
7pm - Danay Suarez Talk
USF Marshall Student Center, MSC3707

Wednesday, February 28 | 10-10:30am
Pledges of Allegiance Flag-raising
USF Contemporary Art Museum, CAM

Learn More...

Art In Health
In partnership with USF Health, USFCAM's Art In Health program explores intersections between the arts and healthcare.

This innovative web-based visual literacy program integrates secondary school social studies and science with contemporary art in an examination and discussion of critical societal issues.

Interested in an internship at CAM or Graphicstudio? Find out how to apply and what deadlines you need to know.

Join the conversation!

Institute for Research in Art
Youtube | Instagram

Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Public Art


Graphicstudio Hours:
Monday–Friday 10am–5pm

Monday–Friday 10am–5pm
Thurs. 10am–8pm
Sat. 1–4pm
CAM is closed Sundays, all University and State of Florida holidays, and between exhibitions.

Groups and organizations interested in tours of the exhibition should contact CAM to schedule at least two weeks in advance at (813) 974-4133.

The University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum (USFCAM) is fully accessible to visitors with disabilities. There are disabled parking spaces outsde of the museum, an accessible entrance, good lighting and accessible restrooms.

The museum follows the USF guidelines regarding service animals.

USFCAM faculty and staff are pleased to work with organizations that provide cultural opportunities for disabled clients to tour the Museum. Please call (813) 974-4133 two weeks in advance to request specific tour information. For more accessibility information please call (813) 974-4133.

Copyright + Reproduction

The electronic images available on this site are subject to copyright and may be covered by other restrictions as well. The images are made available to the general public for the sole purpose of representing the USF Contemporary Art Museum’s programs and collection. Copying or redistribution of the images in any manner without the express written permission of the University of South Florida Institute for Research in Art is strictly prohibited.


(813) 974-4133
24-hour Info Line - (813) 974-2849

(813) 974-3503

Public Art
(813) 974-2203

Art in Health
(813) 974-4199