The arts community in St. Petersburg, Florida is undoubtedly growing just like the beautiful city itself. From the street murals, world-renowned museums, unique artists and noteworthy galleries there is certainly creativity around every corner. One gallery in particular sets itself apart from the rest for it’s one-of-a-kind showroom displaying only American made pieces and how charming the close-knit family who owns it is. Shapiro’s Gallery, located at 300 Beach Drive Northeast, (727) 894-2111, is recognized as a favorite by many locals and is most definitely worth the visit if you are shopping for a gift for someone (or looking to treat yourself!).
Hours of Operation:
Sunday: 11:00 am – 7:00 pm
Monday – Thursday: 10:00 am – 9:00 pm
Friday – Saturday: 10:00 am – 10:00 pm
In the 80s, Mike and Sue Shapiro made St. Pete their home after falling in love with the area during vacation from Boston. Sue was a talented clay artist who packed up her hubby and their two children, Matt and Alena, to travel from art show to art show around the country during the summers. Realizing they had enough of the show circuit, in 1998, the Shapiro’s opened their first gallery in Downtown St. Pete. (It was itty-bitty, only measuring twelve feet by fifteen feet). As many began showing interest in Sue’s pieces and appreciating what the family was doing, they decided to bring in more artists into the showroom.
Overtime the Shapiro’s grew out of the tiny gallery and after a few location changes, they are now located on brilliant Beach Drive right across from The Museum of Fine Arts. Taking pride in showcasing handmade American products, Shapiro’s now displays and sells over 300 various artists! With that many art styles, you will discover a piece that speaks to you.
What can you expect when you visit Shapiro’s Gallery in Downtown St. Pete? Easily put: uniqueness. You will spot delicate jewelry pieces, stunning home décor, mesmerizing blown glass sculptures and other quirky (and corky) gifts. A favorite of Alena’s is Patricia Locke’s handmade and distinctive jewelry (she even received a custom piece from Patricia to wear on her wedding day). The Shapiro’s like to keep the gallery fresh by rotating through different artists from time to time, but there are always staples that you will see. Of course, Sue Shapiro’s decorative clay wall pieces hang beautifully on the walls of the shop (and would look great in your home!).
Beyond the actual merchandise in the store, you will immediately notice the sweet family dynamic of the Shapiro’s. As you browse, chances are that you may meet one of the family members. After Matt and Alena graduated from college, they returned home to St. Pete to work with their parents.
“We are a very close family,” Matt explained, “we work together, we drink together and we go out to eat together.” Each of the Shapiros have their own role within the business from marketing to choosing the artists they feature and the dynamic has come together perfectly.
There is no better time than now to support a local, family-owned and American made gallery in Downtown St. Pete. Visit Shapiro’s the next time you are looking for a gift for someone or have the desire to treat yourself to a well-deserved impulse buy.
While you are at Shapiro’s, take a photo of your favorite piece and post it onto Downtown Now on DowntownStPete.com (after you have created your profile). Remember, we only share the best of the best places to go, those unique personalities you’ve gotta meet, and the 5 star things to do in DTSP.