Cummer Resources

The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens is committed to engage and inspire through the arts, gardens and education. A permanent collection of nearly 5,000 works of art on a riverfront campus offers more than 95,000 annual visitors a truly unique experience on the First Coast. Nationally recognized education programs serve adults and children of all abilities.

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Engaging Local Schools Through Cummer in the Classroom




Each year, the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens partners with underserved urban core elementary schools to promote its mission to engage and inspire through the arts, gardens, and education. Cummer in the Classroom provides PreK3 through 5th grade students with cultural experiences that fully integrate art, creativity, literacy, play, music, and parental involvement, and reflects the belief that the arts are an essential part of school readiness and success. Cummer in the Classroom is the largest educational program that the Museum offers. Students receive four to nine interactions per year, with either Museum staff visiting the school or students visiting the Museum.

“Many of my students wouldn’t have the opportunity to visit the Museum without this partnership” – Denyse Cohen, Sallye B. Mathis Elementary School Teacher

Through the program, participating classes receive at least two field trips to the Museum. The first visit connects students’ grade level curriculum to the Museum’s collection. The second is focused on either a tour of the gardens or a special exhibition. Both of these options offer students an enriching experience. Touring the gardens teaches students about the environment, landscape design, and sculpture through hands-on activities and discussion, while touring the special exhibitions provides a unique experience for students, linking art from various times and cultures to the learning objectives already in place with the Cummer in the Classroom curriculum.

In addition to field trips to the Cummer Museum, participating classes receive outreach visits from Museum Educators, which include language-building exercises, art projects using a variety of media, and appropriately chosen literary and musical components. All curricula used in these visits are developed by Museum Educators in alignment with the Next Generation Sunshine State standards, as well as Duval County STEAM standards (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math). Cummer in the Classroom helps students build critical thinking skills which are useful in all school subjects.

The Cummer in the Classroom program also offers assistance to classrooms, schools, and teachers in the form of donation of art materials, lesson plans, and vocabulary lists. Principals, teachers, and administrators from all schools are also offered development workshops, education credits, and a stipend to further art education.

Additional resources are provided to students and families to enrich their experience and build a stronger community impact, including the ability to take free art classes, as well as access to scholarships that can be used towards Camp Cummer enrollment. All students are also gifted with a free Family Membership to the Museum, which gives Museum access to families who may otherwise not have it.

”We are very thankful to participate in this program. Our students feel as if the Cummer is THEIR museum. Students talked about visiting the Museum on weekends and how happy they were to take their entire family at no cost.” – Dinah Stewart, Central Riverside Elementary School Principal

Cummer in the Classroom is highly beneficial not only to the Museum, but also to thousands of children and families throughout Duval County. The program has created a relationship with students that is sure to stay with them for years, as many students identify the Museum as “their museum”, a place outside of their home and school that connects them to their community. This initiative is helping to engage and inspire children from all backgrounds in the arts.

Cummer in the Classroom would not be possible without donations from generous sponsors. Many thanks to EverBank, The Main Street America Group, Dianne T. & Charles E. Rice Family Foundation, J. Wayne and Delores Barr Weaver, Holland & Knight, and The Rea Charitable Trust for their contributions.

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Middle School Camp Cummer!




Help your middle schooler become the next great artist and sign them up for Middle School Camp Cummer! This is the only comprehensive, fine arts camp in town for middle school students.

For students entering grades six through nine, this camp takes inspiration and creativity to the next level. Students will have the opportunity to explore objects across art history and create original works of art, with techniques and projects that are more advanced and perfect for increasing knowledge, honing skills, and building confidence.

Educators, trained in the fields of art history, fine arts, education, and science, develop lesson plans and support students during their creative process, giving students a deeper look into the art concepts and genres they are learning. This summer, students will work with ceramics and printmaking, specifically making their very own ceramic animal and a lino block print. Camp Cummer offers an authentic experience by providing a hands-on learning that immerses the students into the use of the tools and techniques of the trade.

Middle School Camp Cummer is great for students who want to dive deeper into the arts and learn about advanced techniques and forms. Learn more on the Museum’s website and sign your middle schooler up while there are still spots left.

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Donor Highlight – Sally Barnett and Mary Watson and the Garden Conservancy’s Open Days Program



Mary Watson and Sally Barnett (rear, standing) and Judith Tankard (seated), author of “Legacy in Bloom: Celebrating a Century of Gardens at the Cummer”

Since 2014 Sally Barnett and Mary Watson have spent hundreds of tireless hours dedicated to the success of bringing The Garden Conservancy’s Open Days program to Jacksonville each year.

Open Days unlock the gates to local private gardens, fueling the public’s passion for gardens and gardening through self-guided tours and special programs presented by experts in many fields.

Because of their leadership, Sally and Mary have raised nearly $20,000 and welcomed more than 650 guests in the 5 years this program has been in Jacksonville.

This year’s event was held on Saturday, April 14. It raised more than $7,000 and welcomed nearly 250 visitors, seeing more than 50% increase in both dollars raised and participation. This increase was due in part to the Southern Garden History Society holding their 36th Annual Meeting in Jacksonville this year. Guests toured four beautiful private home gardens and enjoyed gorgeous Jacksonville weather.

The same weekend the Museum was surprised to be gifted two significant donations from national garden organizations, The Garden Conservancy and The Garden Club of America. These gifts, totaling $30,000, will help fund the reconstruction of the historic Cummer Gardens, which were severely damaged during Hurricane Irma.

Left to right: James Brayton Hall from The Garden Conservancy, Rick Morales, and Holly Keris

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Grandpa’s Cough Medicine Updates Name Ahead of Garden Concert




David Bowie once said “Every time I’ve made a radical change it’s helped me feel buoyant as an artist,” and we are sure Brett Bass and Melted Plectrum would agree with Bowie on this. The band, formerly known as Grandpa’s Cough Medicine, has changed their name and is moving back to their musical roots in Florida.

Via Brett Bass and Melted Plectrum’s Facebook page.

In the words of the group’s founder and flat picking front man, Brett Bass, the inspiration behind the name change came from wanting to “step out on [his] own and separate [himself] from the outlaw persona required for Grandpa’s Cough Medicine.” Bass, part of the band for more than ten years, has decided now to use his “platform as a musician to spread positivity and joy,” and changing the name allows him to stray away from “the darker material Grandpa’s Cough Medicine [was] known for.” The ‘Melted Plectrum’ portion of the group’s new name stems from the proper name for a guitar pick, “plectrum”, and the group intends to “melt a few.” While the band’s style will be similar, their music will be more family friendly, influenced by high energy bluegrass tunes from Bass’s time in North Carolina and Tennessee.

Whatever name they choose to go by, we are looking forward to our June 23 Garden Concert with Brett Bass and Melted Plectrum, and hope everyone is excited to enjoy their new tunes!

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The Cummer Museum Lends Artwork to New Exhibition at Norman Rockwell Museum




The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens is thrilled to be part of an upcoming exhibition at the Norman Rockwell Museum, located in Stockwell, Massachusetts. The exhibition, titled Keepers of the Flame: Parrish, Wyeth, Rockwell and the Narrative Tradition, examines the influence of European painting styles on great American illustrators such as Norman Rockwell, N.C. Wyeth, and Maxfield Parrish. The Cummer Museum has lent its painting Première Rêverie [Young Love] by French artist William-Adolphe Bouguereau to Keepers of the Flame.

William-Adolphe Bouguereau (French, 1825-1905) Première Rêverie [Young Love], 1889, Oil on canvas, 62” x 36 ½”.

The pieces on display in this exhibition aim to trace European influences across several artistic time periods and connect the many teachers who passed “the wisdom, knowledge, and techniques of the ages to the next generation of creators”. Keepers of the Flame traces the evolution of painting styles from Renaissance Italy to the opulence of Baroque and Rococo styles, to the famed French academies of the 19th century, into the works of groundbreaking American painters of the 20th century.

By uniting more than 85 works spanning 500 years of artistic development across America and Europe, Keepers of the Flame is an extraordinary exhibition cataloging how even the most progressive art from mid-20th century America has its roots in the classical styles of Europe.

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The Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens Welcomes Bob Colacello for a Lecture on the Pope of Pop




Did you know that Bob Colacello, one of New York’s most eccentric and interesting personalities, will be presenting a lecture at the Museum on July 19 about Andy Warhol? Born in 1947 in Brooklyn, New York, Colacello started his career while still a student at Columbia University’s Graduate School of the Arts by writing film reviews for “The Village Voice,” at which time his review of the Andy Warhol film Trash caught the eye of the artist, and the rest is history.

Colacello became the editor of Warhol’s “Interview” magazine and from 1971 to 1983 it was one of the most popular lifestyle magazines of the era. Colacello’s monthly column “OUT” was notorious for showing off the shenanigans of his social life and often included candid images of famous friends, taken using his small Minox 35mm camera.

In 1990, Colacello published “Holy Terror: Andy Warhol Close Up,” which revealed the inner workings of Warhol’s famed studio, The Factory. The book offers intimate insights into Warhol’s work and life — allowing readers the opportunity to see the many sides of one of the most influential men in pop culture. “The New York Times” noted that “Of the reminiscences that have appeared to date, Colacello’s ‘Holy Terror’ is certainly the best-written and most killingly observed,” and George Plimpton deemed the book “a must for anyone even vaguely interested in Andy’s life and times.”

Since 1984, Colacello has been a special correspondent for “Vanity Fair”, and can more recently add museum curator to his extensive repertoire. In a “Vogue” interview regarding his first exhibition, he explains why he chose the title Age of Ambiguity, noting that “We live in a very mixed-up, confused, even chaotic time” and that artists “tend to echo the times or even predict the times.” The exhibition features both abstract and figurative works from artists whom Colacello has met throughout his career (including a piece by Warhol).

Andy Warhol (American, 1928 – 1987), Ten Portraits of Jews of the Twentieth Century, 1980, Silkscreen on paper, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel M. Edelman, AG.2012.4.1 – 10

The July 19 lecture at the Cummer Museum is sure to inspire and entertain, while simultaneously providing a peek into the colorful life of New York socialites. Learn more about Portrait of the Pope of Pop: Andy Warhol with Bob Colacello.

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