Cummer’s 50th Anniversary Community Celebration | Community Spirit

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Cummer’s 50th Anniversary Community Celebration

 

The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens is celebrating 50 years of art, gardens and education by hosting the 50th Anniversary Community Celebration in honor of the Museum and its legacy. The event is Friday, November 11, 2011, from Noon to 8 p.m. and will feature fun and exciting things to do, including art-making, artist demonstrations, gallery activities, musical concerts, live radio broadcast and surprises all day. Admission is free all day and there will be Anniversary toasts at Noon and 6 p.m., followed by an evening concert in the gardens at 6:30 p.m. with the University of North Florida Jazz Ensemble 1 under the direction of J.B. Scott. They will play music ranging from the 40s to today’s hits. Guests are welcome to bring chairs and blankets for the garden concert. The Community Celebration will be a wonderful grand finale to the 50th Anniversary Year.

 The Cummer opened 50 years ago on November 11, 1961, when art collector, garden enthusiast and civic leader Ninah Cummer bequeathed the art collection and riverfront home, which she owned with her husband Arthur, to create an art museum. This year has been full of renovations, special events and new initiatives in honor of this milestone. The Tudor Room was restored, Museum galleries were renovated, The Wark Collection of Early Meissen Porcelain was reinstalled and the Eugene Savage Paintings, which are a recent addition to the Museum’s collection, were unveiled for the first time after undergoing extensive conservation.

“The Cummer family had a long history of philanthropy in Northeast Florida, and the creation of a museum was something that Ninah Cummer in particular had envisioned for years,” said Cummer Curator Holly Keris. Mrs. Cummer wanted to partake in the education and culture of the people of Jacksonville and wanted the community to take an interest as well. “Undoubtedly, today’s Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens exemplifies Mrs. Cummer’s desire to take some small part in the cultural progress of Jacksonville,’” said Keris.

Fifty years after its dedication, The Cummer embarks on a renewed mission to “engage and inspire through the arts, gardens and education.” New additions will be made to the collection with input from the community. The Cummer Gardens will receive unprecedented attention through new initiatives, including the eventual restoration of the historic Olmsted Garden. Educational efforts will continue to reach broader audiences through innovative programming, impactful outreach and unparalleled partnerships.  A special emphasis will be placed on programs like the Weaver Academy of Art, which reaches thousands of children in Jacksonville’s urban core and VSA initiatives that will serve unprecedented numbers of adults and children with disabilities.  In addition, planning will continue to update the former Woman’s Club, now the Edward W. Lane Jr. Building, as the future social center for the Museum. Through a strengthened commitment to the core mission and broader community involvement, the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens will continue to build on the vision of Ninah Cummer and her family, and move forward into the next 50 years.

For more information on the 50th Anniversary Community Celebration, please call (904) 355-0630.

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