VBMA History

The Vero Beach Museum of Art, a nonprofit organization, was founded by the Alliance for the Arts, established in 1978 solely to create a regional center for the appreciation and teaching of the arts and humanities. The organization raised $2.5 million from local private sources and the Museum, known at the time as the Center for the Arts, opened its doors to the public debt free on January 31, 1986. In 1999 it launched a successful expansion campaign, which doubled the size of the facility to a total of 54,509 square feet. In 2002 its name was changed to the Vero Beach Museum of Art. Future growth came in 2007 with the creation of the Alice and Jim Beckwith Sculpture Park, and again in 2011- 2012 with the expansion of the Beckwith Sculpture Park, a covered Atrium, new entrance vestibule and building of a 20,000 square foot Exhibitions and Collections wing.

The Museum is the principal visual arts facility on Florida’s Treasure coast, and serves a three-county area. Its neoclassical structure commands a premiere position in Riverside Park, along the scenic Indian River and serves more than 75,000 residents and visitors annually. Through its many exhibitions and diverse collection of art and many other events including art classes, community events and special youth events, it is applauded as the cultural heart of the community.

The Museum was awarded Accreditation from the American Association of Museums in March 1997 and Subsequent Accreditation in March 2008, recognizing the institution for its professionalism, quality of programming, exhibitions and community outreach. For 26 years, the Vero Beach Museum of Art has grown tremendously in its service to the local community, the region, and state.

The Museum’s continuing growth is an expression of the community’s interests, tastes and appetite for broad-based cultural offerings. Truly a “center” of high quality cultural education and enjoyment for the region, the Museum predicts continued growth and professional development as demands from an expanding audience are met.