Mission and Vision

The University of Florida’s Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art’s mission is to inspire, educate and enrich people’s lives through art. The Harn uses the power of the visual arts to open conversations about our shared cultural history and pressing contemporary issues through exhibitions, collections, scholarship and programming of the highest caliber. The Harn strives to develop an academic community of creative, divergent thinkers in collaboration with the University of Florida, and fosters joy and community by welcoming students, UF faculty and staff and local residents to engage with art.

Strategic Goals

In order to achieve its five-year vision of success, the Harn will pursue the following Strategic Goals, which address its exhibitions and other public programming, academic and curricular work, atmosphere and public presence, and financial and managerial platform. These goals are:

Expanding Connections
Inspire connection, creativity and inquiry by aligning and enhancing the museum’s exhibition and public programming portfolio.

Expanding Minds
Expand UF students’ intellectual development and professional skills by growing and deepening artcentered contributions to academic life across disciplines while continuing to serve the Gainesville community by engaging students in community-facing programs.

Expanding Experiences
Become a campus and community destination by enhancing the Harn’s visibility and visitor experience.

Expanding Foundations
Enable the success of the previous goals by strengthening the museum’s financial and managerial platform.

To learn more about the Harn's values, goals and strategies for engaging audiences view the Harn's 2020 - 2025 Strategic Plan.

Overview and History

Since opening in 1990, the Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida has been a cornerstone of the North Central Florida arts and culture ecosystem. In addition to serving the students and faculty of the university, the Harn is the most prominent fine art museum in the greater north central Florida region, and demonstrates its commitment to being a cultural resource through its free admission and art-centered experiences. The museum is known for developing high quality and relevant exhibitions--drawn from its collection of 13,300 artworks--many of which have toured across the United States.

The Harn Museum of Art’s facility contains eleven galleries that feature dedicated space for each of its collecting areas (African, Asian, modern and contemporary art, and photography). Since the Harn's opening, it has served more than 2.5 million visitors. The Harn continues to grow with the community by expanding its space for exhibitions and activities. Expansions include an 18,000-square-foot addition built for exhibiting the Harn’s contemporary art collection completed in 2005 and a 26,000-squarefoot addition dedicated to the museum’s collection of Asian Art completed in 2012.

The Harn recently received The Florida Art Collection, Gift of Samuel and Roberta Vickers, which is an extensive visual record of Florida illustrated through paintings, drawings and watercolors. It includes work by many prominent American artists from the late 19th to the mid 20th centuries. A portion of this new gift is featured year-round in a dedicated space, and will eventually be featured in a new 20,000-square-foot wing opening in 2024. In addition to galleries showcasing the Harn’s collection, the Harn brings in well-known art and exhibitions from other lenders, collections and venues across the United States.