The Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida is an oasis of calm, inspiration, and culture serving Gainesville since 1990. Its galleries highlight collections of Asian, African, modern and contemporary art and photography, creating an interactive, engaging public dialogue through education, exhibitions, and discussion. Developing and encouraging community involvement and participation is the mission of the museum – a multi-faceted local jewel waiting with open arms to be discovered.
An ongoing installation is “Florida Impressions: Gift of Samuel H. and Roberta T. Vickers”, a celebration of one of the most comprehensive collections of Florida art and artists in the state. The more than fifty paintings cover themes ranging from scenic coastlines and waterways to historic landmarks and events, revealing the diversity and vibrancy of the local culture in the Sunshine State. Carefully curated by the Vickers prior to gifting it to the Harn and featuring artists including Martin Johnson Heade, Herman Herzog, Margaret Zorach, and Louis Comfort Tiffany, the collection echoes the sense of anticipatory adventure that characterized the breaking dawn of a new century in the quiet beauty of Florida.
“The Harn being a part of the University campus was a large factor in Sam and Robbie’s decision to donate their works to us,” says Tami Wroath, Director of Marketing and Public Relations. “The educational aspect was very important to them, and they wanted students, faculty, scholars and the community to be able to study and enjoy these artists. They felt the Harn was the best place for that.”
“Florida Impressions” will be featured year-round, in addition to other installations and ongoing exhibitions. Wroath encourages Gainesville residents to come and explore everything the Harn has to offer.
“We have up to ten gallery spaces, some of which feature the permanent collection, and others showing traveling exhibitions we’ve brought to Gainesville,” Wroath explains. “Admission is free, and there’s so much to see with the diverse types of art and artists we have. I recommend visitors take in a few exhibits and then visit the Camellia Court Café for lunch. There’s a beautiful terrace and gardens where you can picnic and enjoy the outdoors. It’s right in the heart of Gainesville and a wonderful place to spend the day.” For more information about the Harn Museum of art, visit https://harn.ufl.edu/.
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