Cummer’s new leader shares simple principles for relevance

Cummer’s new leader shares simple principles for relevance
James and Sandra Richardson with John Hurtubise, Adam Levine, Ric Goodman, Kim Kuta Dring and Kerrie Slattery

           Members of the Ponce de León Society, an elite group of donors to the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens, gathered Feb. 6 at the St. Johns Quarter home of John Hurtubise and Ric Goodman for a meet-and-greet with Adam Levine, the George W. and Kathleen I. Gibbs Director and Chief Executive Officer of the museum.

            Levine thanked the members for their support since the society was founded in 1996, noting the members are key to what keeps the museum focused and available to all people.

            “Your support goes towards all sorts of things, but it actually goes towards people, real human beings who are working to make this community better with and through the power of the arts,” said Levine, who also shared three “design” principles he believes the museum must accomplish.

            “I think the Cummer must ‘do’ quality, access and fun. Quality is egalitarian. Quality doesn’t discriminate. Quality extends beyond time and place. The highest quality thing is what we must stand for, but we must also be accessible. It’s hard work to make quality accessible but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done,” he said, noting on Martin Luther King Day the museum had three times the average daily visitations with 50 percent of the visitors having never been to the museum before. “They wanted to see great works of art, we had removed the barriers by making it free and by providing free transportation through a partnership with JTA.”

            Quality and access means visitation, it means engagement – and fun, continued Levine. “If we can provide the highest quality experience, be accessible, and allow people to have fun when they’re with us, we’re going to see a huge visitation and extraordinary relevance,” he concluded.

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