Tucked away on a picturesque shore of Lake Formosa in Loch Haven Park, just north of downtown Orlando, the elegantly appointed Mennello Museum of American Art is housed in what was once the private home of Howard Phillips, son of philanthropist Dr. P. Phillips. The intimate museum uses its gallery spaces to showcase changing exhibitions featuring American art of all genres and time periods, including originally curated and traveling shows.
The treasure of the Mennello Museum is the permanent collection of paintings by self-taught or "primitive" artist Earl Cunningham (1893-1977), generously donated from the collection of Michael A. and Marilyn L. Mennello. This collection of Cunninghams is the largest in existence, and a rotating selection of paintings remains on display. Owned and operated by the City of Orlando, the Mennello Museum of American Art opened its doors in 1998.
A lakeside sculpture garden is another attraction and is the site of the annual Orlando Folk Festival, held the second weekend in February. When visiting, you may be welcomed by Red and Black, the museum's resident greeting felines. Both have found their way to hearts of patrons and staff alike.
Organized by the Boca Museum of Art, this exhibition features 40 artworks from public and private collections that reflect the development of Santa Fe as an art colony through the artists who visited there and helped establish the city as an artistic center, tracing the colony's formative years from approximately 1915 up to 1940. Southwestern Allure presents a thorough picture of which artists went to Santa Fe, what they found compelling about the environment, the work they produced, and the prevailing artistic trends, from Realism to Modernism, which they applied to Southwestern subject matter. Through the works included in the exhibition, a range of styles are presented, encompassing the Santa Fe Old Guard, such as Carlos Vierra, Gerald Cassidy, and Warren Rollins, the Realism of Robert Henri, Edward Hopper, Leon Kroll, and John Sloan, as well as the introduction of the Modernist aesthetic to the Southwest with such artists as Stuart Davis, Andrew Dasburg, and Marsden Hartley, to highlight only a few of the prominent artists.
Pictured above: Andrew Dasburg (American, born France, 1887-1979), "Pueblo Village (New Mexico Village, Adobe Village)," c. 1926-1928, oil on canvas, 19 7/8 x 24 1/4 inches, Collection of Gerald and Kathleen Peters, Santa Fe, New Mexico.