In the Loop
Press Release : Mar 19, 2015

The University of Florida School of Art + Art History to Rename Focus Gallery in Honor of Gary R. Libby

The University of Florida (UF) School of Art + Art History is pleased to announce that it will rename Focus Gallery, one of its three on-campus art galleries, in recognition of the philanthropy and ongoing support of UF alumnus Gary R. Libby. Libby is a longtime advocate for the School of Art + Art History and University Galleries. Most recently, he donated a major gift to the College of the Arts in support of public and academic programs in the arts at the UF galleries.

University Galleries comprises three art galleries—University Gallery, Focus Gallery and Grinter Gallery—and is an integral part of the programs and curricula of the School of Art + Art History. Focus Gallery, located adjacent to the lobby of the School of Art + Art History’s Fine Art Building C, is an 850-square-foot space that presents ongoing exhibitions of student-curated and other curated exhibitions. Dedication of the Gary R. Libby Gallery will be scheduled for the fall of 2015.

“I have always been interested in opportunities for the exhibition of visual arts in the School of Art + Art History, and I have supported University Galleries since I was a student here,” said Libby, who served as honorary co-chair of the UG at 50 Steering Committee. “I was there when University Gallery opened in 1965, and I am pleased to be able to financially support these projects while I am still alive and can continue to contribute to the cultural education of students in the School of Art + Art History.”

Libby is director emeritus of the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Daytona Beach, Florida, where he served as director from 1977 to 2002, and from 2004 to 2006. He is a former assistant professor in art history at Stetson University and received his undergraduate degrees from UF and graduate degrees from Tulane University in New Orleans and UF. Libby, born in Boston, is a native of Ft. Myers, Florida, and is past president of the Florida Art Museum Directors Association and former secretary of the Florida Association of Museums who gave him their Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998. Libby is a published author whose most recent hard cover books include a new 2015 edition of Cuba: A History in Art, Reflections: Paintings of Florida 1865-1965 and Reflections II: Watercolors of Florida 1835-2000.

“The success of our college, our extensive programs and our students is in large part due to the generosity of our alumni, friends and supporters such as Gary Libby,” said Lucinda Lavelli, dean of the UF College of the Arts. “We are so grateful for his donation and his continued support of our galleries. We look forward to the additional programming that will benefit the entire campus as well as UF’s art majors.”

About the School of Art + Art History
The School of Art + Art History is one of the University of Florida College of the Arts’ three institutionally-accredited schools. The School of Art + Art History supports the College of the Arts’ mission of serving as an educational, professional and cultural resource in the visual arts for the campus, community, state and region. Programs offered include art education, art history, art and technology, creative photography, ceramics, drawing, graphic design, painting, printmaking, sculpture and visual art studies. In addition, the school supports galleries that are open to the public and feature traditional and contemporary artwork, student pieces and more. To learn more, visit For more information about University Galleries, visit

About the College of the Arts
The College of the Arts, previously known as the College of Fine Arts, is one of the 16 colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. The College of the Arts offers baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its three institutionally-accredited schools — the School of Art + Art History, School of Music and School of Theatre + Dance. The college is home to the Center for Arts in Medicine, Center for Arts and Public Policy, Center for World Arts, Digital Worlds Institute, University Galleries and the New World School of the Arts in Miami. More than 100 faculty members and approximately than 1,200 students work together daily to engage, inspire and create. The college hosts more than 300 performances, exhibitions and events each year. Faculty and students also exhibit and perform at other local, national and international venues. To learn more, visit

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Media Contact
Leah Craig, Public Relations and Marketing Manager
University of Florida College of the Arts
Office: 352.273.1489 | Cell: 904.419.3346