Carolyn Frohsin Heller


   Carolyn F. Heller was a Florida artist who created works of bold shape and vivid color.

   She was influenced by abstract expression early in her 60-year career, yet her style evolved to embrace an unambiguous       and playful vitality that mirrored her personality.

   She started drawing and painting in the 1950s. Beginning with print-making, wood-cuts and acrylics on canvas, she             expanded into mixed-media on fabric, furniture and other everyday items. She crafted jewelry and silk scarves. In every

   context, her work was sensual and full of energy.

   An Alabama native, Carolyn studied fine arts at Sophie Newcomb College at Tulane University in New Orleans and

   continued her training at the University of South Florida in Tampa, where she lived for more than 50 years. She also
   studied at the Tampa Museum of Art. 
She was drawn to the abstract, its free form and vibrancy in artists she admired,
   such as Ida Kohlmeyer, Elaine de Kooning, Syd Solomon and other abstract expressionists.

   Later in life, Carolyn looked to the natural, tropical world for inspiration. Her intention was  irreverent and flirtatious: fruit,       flowers and insects were depicted with elegance and humor. She gave her fish sly expressions and bright lipstick. She           endowed her blushing pears with full-figured rear ends. Her wide-ranging works are held in private and public collections

   across the United States and have been featured in galleries, art shows and exhibitions in Florida and the Southeast.

   She was passionate about gardening and public art. She was a long-serving member of the Arts Council of Hillsborough

   County, which funds cultural services. She also helped establish the county’s Public Art Committee, which selects and

   purchases artwork for public display. She also was a human rights advocate. In 1997, the Tampa AIDS Network

   commissioned her to create its annual signature piece of art for its Art for Life benefit.

   Carolyn’s family seeks to honor her memory in an online gallery, permanently exhibiting works from her collection.

About the Carolyn F. Heller Grant Award

   The Carolyn F. Heller Grant, a permanent award supported by a fund created by donations to Hillsborough Arts, is

   presented annually to the top-scoring artist in the Council’s Individual Artist Grant Program. The program funds

   accomplished artists or those with promising potential, providing support for specific projects that would further advance

   the artists’ professional growth. Passionate about public art, Carolyn F. Heller was a long-serving member of the Arts

   Council of Hillsborough County. She also helped establish the county’s Public Art Committee, which selects and purchases

   artwork for public display.

   CAROLYN F. HELLER GRANT WINNERS:                                                     

   2018 – Rebecca Sexton Larson
   2017 – Michael Parker
   2016 – Laura Waller
   2015 – Susan Gott
   2014 – Michael Covello
   2013 – Michael Parker
   2012 – Arnolkis Turro




                             To make a donation in Carolyn’s honor:

Arts Council of Hillsborough County
1000 N. Ashley Drive, Suite 105
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 276-8250