Visiting Jerry, Phoebe and Lorna
Gainesville, Florida: July 2018
While my parents met and lived in San Francisco, I was born in Gainesville, Florida in 1963. Gainesville is really the deep south: full of mossy woods with fossil-filled creeks, alligators in the lakes, and every kind of poisonous snake you can find in North America. It was also the home to rocker Tom Petty (GHS '68) our local claim to fame. My parents Lorna and Mel were friends with other faculty from the University of Florida while i was growing up. Professor (and photographic pioneer) Jerry Uelsmann was sometimes referred to as "Uncle Jerry" — he introduced my parents to photographic art and photographers, and in part from his influence, I became a photographer and my parents became collectors. Fellow Doctor Robert Cade, a nephrologist at UF, developed "Gatorade" when we were kids, and his daughter Phoebe and I were friends. Over those years my mom was an independent publisher, but among her other accomplishments had created one of the core kid's arts programs in town, the GACA, that we found was still thriving after 50 years. So it's now 2018 and on this trip back to Gainesville I wanted to take my mom around town; first to visit Jerry at his home, a place that growing up I always found magical and funny; and then a visit to Phoebe at her newly opened Cade Museum of Creativity and Innovation, honoring both her dad and the creative process; and finally we stopped at the Harn Museum of Art, the beneficiary of hundreds of photographs from my parent's collection and where a permanent gallery of photography bears their names, where we met the new museum director.