Key West Art & Historical Society invites public to celebrate the legacy of Tennessee Williams at merger anniversary party
On Friday, January 11 from 5:00pm - 7:30pm, Key West Art & Historical Society invites the public to a special party celebrating the Society’s successful merger with the Tennessee Williams Exhibit—now Museum—at 513 Truman Avenue. Guests can browse the professionally curated and managed collection of memorabilia and artifacts commemorating the great American playwrightwhile toasting with prosecco and enjoying sweet edibles.
“This is a celebration not only of the merger but of the contributions that Tennessee Williams made to this city,” says the exhibit’s Founder Dennis Beaver. “He helped make our island a cultural destination where writers, artists, and the institutions that support them still flourish.”
When Beaver moved to Key West in 1979, Tennessee Williams was a prominent figure not only on the island, but all over the world. At the approach of the iconic writer’s 100thbirthday in 2011, Beaver decided to offer a public exhibit of his ever-growing personal collection of Williams memorabilia to help honor and recognize the two-time Pulitzer-prize winner and Presidential Medal of Freedom awardee. The preserved and showcased collection is the largest collection of Tennessee Williams memorabilia and literary artifacts available to the public and helps keep alive the importance of his literary legacy. Displays include artist Jane Rohrschneider’s recently completed model of the playwright’s former home at 1431 Duncan Street where he lived from 1949 until his death in 1983, first edition plays and books, images from the late local photographer Don Pinder, and original steps from the film adaptation of Williams’ play “The Rose Tattoo” which was filmed entirely in Key West.
The award-winning museum has become an international destination for Tennessee Williams enthusiasts and scholars where visitors can enjoy entertaining and informative self-guided tours as well as pre-arranged curator-led tours, and its annual Tennessee Williams Birthday Celebration offers a full roster of special events, writing and painting contests, film forums, and one-act plays. The Society also complements the Tennessee Williams Museum on Truman Avenue with a collection of Williams’ paintings on display at the Custom House Museum.
“The vision and goal for the Tennessee Williams Museum has always been to keep alive the legacy of one of the greatest American writers of the last century,” says Beaver. “At the end of this first year, it is abundantly clear that this goal will continue to be nourished and advanced professionally by the Society.”
The Tennessee Williams Museum is open 364 days a year from 9:30am-4:30pm. For more information or to arrange a tour, call 305-204-4527. Your Museums. Your Community. It takes an Island.