Photos by: Matthew Vandenburgh
Did you know that Hernando County is home to many incredibly talented artists? Take a stroll around The Uptown Art Gallery located inside Brooksville City Hall and you can see for yourself. The City of Brooksville hosts exhibits for all types of art- including handcrafted jewelry, photography, acrylic, oil, watercolor, pastels, and even sculptures. All local artists are welcome to show off their creative talents at this gallery. The Uptown Gallery was founded in 1998 as a cooperative effort between the City of Brooksville and the Hernando Fine Arts Council. City Hall is the perfect location for local and regional artist to display their work. The Gallery hosts five exhibits a year. Each exhibit has a reception that is sponsored in part by the Brooksville Junior Service League and Hernando County Fine Arts Council. All receptions are free and open to the public. Each piece of artwork has the artist’s information and most are for sale.
Former Brooksville city clerk, Karen Phillips, and Mary Alice Queiros partnered 20 years ago to provide the community with art in public places. They wanted to enhance the arts and the city by creating a place for local artists to display their works. These women had the foresight and fortitude to bring the gallery to fruition and their efforts have made life more interesting and full for the people of Hernando County. The first art reception was on June 18, 1998.
On May 25, 2018 the city celebrated the 20th anniversary of this wonderful gallery. Art Coordinator, Judy McIntire, and her volunteers worked hard getting this latest reception and exhibition together. This current exhibit is the largest one they have had in their 20 year history. City Council member, Joe Bernardini, was in attendance and said a few words about the founders of the gallery. The reception also included refreshments and live music as well as a live poetry reading by two members of the Just Poets Society, a local group for all poetry lovers. Anyone interested in joining the poetry group can show up at the monthly meetings which happen on the second Thursday of each month and are held at the Foggia (West Hernando) Branch Library on Cortez at 3:00 pm. Bring any poetry that you want to share with the group, whether it is your own or someone else’s.
The Uptown Art Gallery in Brooksville belongs to the people. All ages are encouraged to enjoy and even participate in this inspiring part of local history and culture.
Brooksville City Hall is located at 201 Howell Avenue Brooksville, FL 34601. The Uptown Art Gallery hours are Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.