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Day Trip: Florida Museum of Photographic Arts

Located in “The Cube” along the Tampa Riverwalk, the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts occupies the 2nd and 3rd floors and presents collections from the cutting edge to the vintage.

The Cube itself is pretty fun. The lobby atrium soars six stories tall and has a ton of natural light.


Oh yeah, this area is considered Tampa’s Waterfront Arts District. I suppose it is due to the number of cultural attractions located in this small area, such as the Tampa Museum of Art, Glazer Children’s Museum, and Henry B. Plant Museum. I saw a number of street performers in the area as well and there is at least one performing arts center nearby.

Once inside, take the elevator to the 2nd floor to enter the museum. The exhibits are located along the edges of the museum. My favorite exhibit had to do with old, panoramic photos ranging from the early 1900s to the 1930s.

Here’s an idea of what the exhibits look like:

I loved the historic photos the best. Below is Bayshore Blvd  from back in the day. Notice there are no rows of mansions along the road.


Last, but not least. Here is a picture of Ms. Florida representing the state at the 1949 Miss America pageant. I tried to look up who she was/is, but I wasn’t able to find out. Ms. Arizona won the competition that year.

Looking at all the old photos from 100 or so years ago, I kept wondering what it was like to be an actual subject in the photos. Did they wonder “perhaps a 100 years or so from now this photo of me will be hanging up in a museum?” Makes you think.

I wanted to like the other exhibits, but I didn’t. The main exhibit is the She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not exhibit, which is about female photographers’ take on males and masculinity. Some of the photos were a little interesting, but the further I went into the exhibit the more it just turned into cocks. I heard this phrase–and I kid you not–from one of the speakers: “stylized male genitalia.” First, that sounds painful. Second, give me a break. If I want to see big cocks I can go online.

So overall, the museum was somewhat interesting but other nearby museums are better. If you are a local you can definitely check it out. The best way to do it is via 4th Friday which is pay-as-you-will. If you are an Average Joe like me I wouldn’t recommend spending the $10.00 to get in. If you are a photographer or a super-fan of the arts you would probably get your money’s worth.

Doing it on the cheap…

The best way to do the photograph museum on the cheap is to take advantage of the pay-as-you-will 4th Friday celebration.

Location: 400 N Ashley Dr, Tampa, FL 33602
Admission: Adult $10.00 | Students/Military/Seniors $8.00
Hours: Mon – Thurs 11:00am – 6:00pm | Fri 11:00am – 7:00pm | Sat – Sun 12:00pm – 5:00pm
Phone: 813-221-2222
Website: http://fmopa.org/

Photo Credit: FMoPa at night by FMoPa | Rest of the photos are by me (Austin Scheeringa)

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