ABOUT: Harn Overview Harn Museum of Art

Harn Overview

The Samuel P. Harn Museum opened in 1990, dedicated to promoting the power of the arts to inspire and educate people and enrich their lives. More than 8,000 works are represented in the museum’s various collections, which include photography and Asian, African, modern and contemporary art. The museum also displays numerous traveling exhibitions throughout the year. As an accredited museum, the Harn has been recognized as a leader in its field by the American Association of Museums. The museum is located at 3259 Hull Road in Gainesville, Florida, and is part of the University of Florida Cultural Plaza.

One of the largest university-affiliated art museums in the United States, the Harn Museum has an 86,800-square-foot facility, which includes 32,800 square feet of exhibition space, a 250-seat auditorium, study center, museum store, café, spacious areas for art storage and staff offices for work and research. In 2012, the museum opened the David A. Cofrin Asian Art Wing, a new 26,000-square-foot addition, which is dedicated to the exhibition, storage and conservation of the museum’s extensive collection of Asian art.


The Harn Museum of Art is named in honor of Samuel Peebles Harn (1893-1957), whose widow, three daughters and their husbands and grandchildren made the founding gift to the University of Florida for the museum’s construction. The three generations pledged more than $3 million for the construction of a fine arts museum in 1983. Additional private gifts were raised, and public funding was secured. The Harn Museum of Art opened September 20, 1990.

In 2000, the David A. Cofrin family made a gift to fund an 18,000-square-foot addition. Current Harn Museum Director Rebecca Martin Nagy joined the staff in 2002 and led the Harn through the first major construction project since its opening. The addition of the Mary Ann Harn Cofrin Pavilion, named in honor of the daughter of the late Samuel P. Harn, opened in October 2005. A LEED-certified building, the Cofrin Pavilion features 6,500 feet of exhibition space for international contemporary art, the Camellia Court Café, an outdoor landscaped plaza with water features and the Goforth Learning Center, which is used for meetings, programs and educational activities. The Camellia Court Café is the first and only dining location for UF Cultural Plaza visitors and also adds additional space for special events.

February 6, 2008, Dr. and Mrs. David A. Cofrin made a commitment of $10 million to the University of Florida to fund the addition of a wing dedicated to Asian art. Planned for the northwest side of the museum, near the corner of Southwest 34th Street and Hull Road, the 26,000-square-foot addition will have Asian art gallery space, an upper level for curatorial and museum activities, and art storage and conservation space for the Asian collections. An Asian garden will be accessible from the galleries of the new wing.

The University of Florida’s Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art collaborates with university and community partners to inspire, educate and enrich people’s lives through art. The museum brings the joy of experiencing great works of art to diverse university, community, national and global audiences through relevant and enlightening art collections, exhibitions and learning opportunities.

Staff members assembled to draft a plan that will direct the museum's efforts for the next five years. Click here to view a copy of the 2013 - 2018 strategic plan.


Ken and Laura Berns
Gainesville, FL

Irma & Norman Braman
Miami, FL

Mary Ann P. Cofrin
Amherst, MA

Patricia Dorosz
Miami, FL

Russ and Deirdre Fogler
Gainesville, FL

Bill and Hazel Hough
St. Petersburg, FL

Bob and Nancy Magoon
Aspen, CO

Lorna Rubin
Gainesville, FL

Steve Shey
Gainesville, FL

Ron Shore
San Francisco, CA

Rick and Aase Thompson
Gainesville, FL

John and Pat Carlson
Gainesville, FL

Christina Bonarrigo
UF Student Body President

T.J. Villamil
Past UF Student Body President

Ashton Charles
Past UF Student Body President

Carol Shey
Mary Ann H. Cofrin


The Harn is a proud member of the following oranizations:

E-NEWS University of Florida
OPEN Tues - Fri, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. | Sat, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. | Sun, 1 - 5 p.m.
VISIT 3259 Hull Road • Gainesville, Florida 32611-2700 MAP IT
PHONE 352.392.9826
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