The Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College offers the public a three-month French Cultural Immersion program series to coincide with its recently opened “Edgar Degas: The Private Impressionist” exhibition on view through March 24.
The series includes the following Degas-inspired free events:
• Curator Talk and Tour from 6-8:30 p.m. on Feb. 7 and March 7.
• Point of View Gallery Talk from noon-1 p.m. on Jan. 11, Feb. 8 and March 8.
• Docent-Led Tour from 11 a.m. -noon on Jan. 19, Feb. 16 and March 16.
Concurrently, the PMA Education Department offers six-week, French-related art classes for families starting Feb. 4. The After School Art Family Program is offered on Mondays, 4:30-5:30 p.m. It is free for PMA members and $5 for nonmembers. A course titled, “Art Appreciation: 19th Century French Art and the Birth of Impressionism” is offered on Tuesdays, 6-9 p.m. It is free for PMA members and $60 for nonmembers.
The culminating La Francophonie Day Celebration on March 23 from noon to 4 p.m. pays tribute to the 300 million French speakers living on five continents. This free half-day program features a Degas Exhibition Curator Talk & Tour; Paris, Montreal and Port-au-Prince landscape painting for children and adults; French dance, music, singing, and poetry performances by Florida Dance Theater, Florida Southern College and Polk State College French students; and the Pearl of Nation Creole dance and singing troupe. Various French specialty cuisine will be available to purchase.
Many French partnerships have been forged for these events, thanks to museum sponsors and liaisons including the Fishman Family Foundation of New York City, France Florida Foundation for the Arts of Miami, A-C-T Environmental & Infrastructure of Bartow, The Mahoney Group of Lakeland, and the Consulate General of Canada. Dignitaries attending the La Francophonie Day Celebration include the consul general of France in Miami, the France Florida Foundation for the Arts president, the consul general of Canada in Miami, the honorary consul of Belgium in Miami, and the honorary French consuls of Orlando and Tampa.
In addition, Lakeland Mayor Bill Mutz has declared March 23 as La Francophonie Day in Lakeland and will award proclamations to the French dignitaries at a 12:15 p.m. ceremony, where Florida Southern President Dr. Ann Kerr and PMA Executive Director Claire Orologas will speak. All Francophiles are encouraged to attend this program.
To help support these free La Francophonie activities, the Polk Museum of Art seeks additional sponsors. Interested partners should contact PMA Director of Arts Advancement Suzanne Grossberg at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 863-688-7743 ext. 298.
For more details regarding art classes, contact the PMA Education Manager Ellen Chastain at email@example.com or call 863-688-7743 ext. 227. To learn more about the Museum’s 2019 French Cultural Immersion program series, visit https://polkmuseumofart.org.
About the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College
The Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College in Lakeland, Florida, is a private, not-for-profit academic fine art museum dedicated to promoting inspirational and engaging arts experiences for all. It is one of the Top 10 art museums in the State of Florida, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and the only art museum accredited by the American Alliance of Museums serving the 666,000 residents of Polk County. Museum hours are 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesdays – Saturdays; 1-5 p.m. Sundays (closed Sundays June 1 through Labor Day) and closed Mondays and major holidays. Admission is free for everyone year-round, thanks to the following organizations: Southern Homes/Amy & Ed Laderer; the Ting Tsung and Wei Fong Chao Foundation; and the Share Foundation. The museum is fully accessible.