A Florida Gallery
March 07, 2007 through August 05, 2007
This fictional gallery—a shop specializing in Florida art and objets d’art—contains a variety of objects collected by Jeannette and Hugh McKean. It is loosely based on Winter Park’s Center Street Gallery, which Mrs. McKean created in 1945 both to celebrate local art and to make works of art available to everyone in the community. The Center Street Gallery closed in 1994, five years after Jeannette’s death.
The McKeans were artists as well as philanthropists and felt deeply about their work and that of other Florida artists and craftsmen. It was their hope that the Florida collections they assembled would be enhanced and eventually exhibited on a permanent basis, although separately from the Morse and its collections. For now, the Morse offers this glimpse into the part of their legacy that is uniquely “Florida.”
Some of the work shown here—including paintings by Lois Bartlett Tracy, Lucien Harris III, and Andre Smith—were represented at Center Street. The vignette, however, also includes works by Florida artists that the Museum has acquired more recently and which have never been exhibited. These include landscapes by the African-American artists now known as “The Highwaymen” and ceramics from the Silver Springs, Merritt Island, and other potteries that represent Florida’s own Arts and Crafts tradition. We hope you enjoy this view of Florida’s special style as interpreted by the Morse and some of the various artists who have found inspiration for their work in our state.