Silver Anniversary

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

Silver is the traditional gift for a 25th anniversary, but that wouldn’t be practical for the GumTree Museum of Art in Tupelo.
Instead, the museum is throwing a party on Friday to celebrate a quarter century of service to art lovers in Northeast Mississippi.
The event is titled Martinis at the Museum, and your $25 ticket will include your first martini or a glass of wine. Finger food and a cash bar will be available.
“We wanted to give people a chance to participate in the excitement of our anniversary,” said Sam Agnew, chairman of the museum’s board of directors. “It will be a fun party to celebrate what Tupelo has been able to do.”

A little history
Back in 1983, a group of people got together with the intention of starting an archaeological museum, said Tina Lutz, GumTree Museum director.
“It was decided that an art museum would work better,” she said.
Renovations on the old People’s Bank building on Main Street began in 1984, and the Tupelo Artist Guild opened in 1985.
“Sometime later, somebody put an ‘s’ on ‘artist,’” Lutz said. “After that, somehow ‘gallery’ was added to the end.”
The Tupelo Artists Guild Gallery became the GumTree Museum of Art in 2003.
Martinis at the Museum will pay tribute to all that history. You’ll also be able to see
30 pieces of art from the museum’s permanent collection.
“We thought showing our collection would be a great way to celebrate,” Agnew said.
The exhibit features art by Susan Goff, Ke Francis, Jean Thickens Cooper, Glen Ray Tutor, Rick Anderson, Lynn Long, Gus Staub, Helene Fielder, Rob Reedy, Kathleen Fetters, Buddy McCarty and Maltby Sykes. It includes paintings, pottery, drawings, prints and mixed-media work.

Silent auction
In addition, artists with the Northeast Mississippi Art Association will provide a variety of paintings for a silent auction.
Cocktail attire is required for the evening. Proceeds will help fund opening receptions for upcoming museum events.
“It’s going to be a lot of fun,” said Paula Spragins, a member of the museum’s Guild of Volunteers.

Contact M. Scott Morris at (662) 678-1589 or

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