GAINESVILLE, FL -- The Gainesville Fine Arts Association (GFAA) is celebrating its 100th year anniversary this year. GFAA will be celebrating this milestone with two big events this month. 

The first celebration is their 100 Year Anniversary Party on Saturday, Sept. 23rd from 6 to 9 p.m. at the newly restored 1908 Grand located at 215 N. Main Street, Gainesville where “history meets modern elegance.” This historic building was built in 1908 as the Gainesville Masonic Lodge No. 41, whose members were instrumental in the building of several historic downtown Gainesville structures, including the Gainesville courthouse and the University Auditorium.

 This is a ticketed fundraiser event. Tickets are $50 per person and include dinner provided by Blue Gill (with vegetarian options) and a drink, as well as a cash bar.  In addition, the event will feature an artwork raffle, and dancing to music provided by the Gainesville String Quartet and DJ Elio.

Tickets must be purchased by Sept. 16 at gainesvillefinearts.org/100.

The second is the reception for GFAA’s History Exhibition: 100 Years of Art being held on Sept. 29 from 7 to 10 p.m. during Gainesville’s Artwalk. The reception will include live music and refreshments. The exhibition tells the story of the organization and includes original art from members through the past 100 years, including old newspaper articles and works by one of the founders, Emmaline Buchholz on loan from the Matheson Museum. The 100 Years of Art exhibit will be on display free and open to the public at GFAA Gallery from September 29th to November 18th, 2023.

These events are funded in part by Visit Gainesville, Alachua County, in part by the by the State of Florida through the Division of Arts and Culture and the National Endowment of the Arts and in part by a grant from the City of Gainesville, Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department.

The history and impact of Gainesville Fine Arts Association

GFAA was formed in 1923 by three close friends, Mrs. F.W. Buchholz (Emmaline), Miss Nelly Trezevant and Mrs. C. Addison Pound (Annie) to “foster and encourage the study of the Arts theoretically and practically through every medium.” During its early years, it brought exhibits to the city and presented art lectures. The Association’s monthly meetings were held on the second floor of the Thomas Hotel.

In the 1930s a studio of three rooms was rented at 131 Union Street (on the south side of the “courthouse” square) where travelling exhibitions and classes were taught. Continuing through the war years and the growth of the 1950s, the Association offered painting classes for adults, children, sidewalk art shows, art jamborees, auctions, and children’s exhibits. The first Newsletter was sent out in 1963, and in 1973 the Association was re-chartered by the state of Florida and granted tax exempt, nonprofit status in 1978.

Over the decades, GFAA has held many events that have contributed to Gainesville’s art and culture in its long history including: the original Gainesville Mall Art Show, Art Festival at Thornebrook, the Winter Fine Arts Fair at Tioga Town Center, and many different exhibits at the Thomas Center, Santa Fe College, Oak Hammock, Trinity United Methodist, and other area businesses and restaurants. GFAA creates community, support, and opportunities for exposure and connection for Gainesville Artists, as well as professional exhibitions where art appreciators can view and buy local art.   

In 2016, GFAA secured their first ever gallery space, the GFAA Gallery, located at 1314 South Main Street. The Gallery is supported by GFAA’s 300 artist members active in the Gallery’s robust programming including monthly exhibitions, workshops, artist meet-ups, weekly shared studio time in the gallery, concerts, and other events. The Gallery is free and open to the public, and the exhibitions include local artists in all different phases of their practice.

For more information, please visit gainesvillefinearts.org/100.

#     #     #

Email editor@