culture

Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town/Johannesburg and Yancey Richardson, New York

A new exhibit at the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens is celebrating the work of South African artist Zanele Muholi. The exhibit, a series of more than 80 self-portraits, explore themes like race, identity, human rights and social justice. 

Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville Executive Director Joy Young speaking at the Times-Union Center.
Jihan Grant / Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville

The Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville introduced its next Executive Director to the public on Thursday.

Cathedral Arts Project

Florida arts organizations are saying they feel like losers in this year’s state budget process.

FSCJ

Thirty four years ago, Jacksonville police arrested Springfield resident Ottis Toole for arson. In the months that followed, Toole confessed to being one half of a murderous duo responsible for more than 100 brutal slayings across the Southeast.

Though Toole’s involvement in some crimes was confirmed, others were called into question as the years wore on.

Now, the mystery surrounding one of the city’s most notorious serial killers is being adapted as a stage play after a Jacksonville professor turned it into a novel.  The “Stalking Ottis Toole: A Southern Gothic” runs through Sunday at Florida State College at Jacksonville.


Duval County Public Schools / Facebook

Duval County School teachers reported improved school culture in the 2015-2016 school year, according to the 2016 Instructional Culture Index survey.

tax cut chart
Jessica Palombo / WJCT News

Floridians could still get a reduction in their cable-TV and cell-phone bills as part of a new House tax-cut package, but the overall plan likely will fall short of the tax cuts sought by Gov. Rick Scott.

Also, Scott's call to permanently lift the sales tax on the purchase of college textbooks may be altered, as the House is repackaging a tax-cut package (HB 7141) from the regular legislative session to help develop a budget that lawmakers say will include higher health-care costs.

tax cut chart
Jessica Palombo / WJCT News

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is proposing to cut taxes on cell phone, cable and satellite services. The governor was at the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce this morning to push for the cuts.

Under the governor's plan, a family with a $125 monthly cell phone bill would save just over $50 a year in taxes. Scott says the state can afford losing $470 million in telecom tax revenue because the property and sales tax bases are growing.

Massey
Peter Haden / WJCT News

The Jacksonville Symphony announced its new president and CEO today. Just months after conductor and music director Courtney Lewis came on board, the symphony has chosen former Orchestra Iowa chief executive Robert Massey to lead the organization.

"He and I share a vision for the future of the Jacksonville Symphony, a future founded in reaching new levels of artistic excellence, strengthening our cultural citizenship and broadening our reach in and outside of this community," Massey said Thursday. 

Jacksonville Sheriff's Office

The mystery artist behind local utility box graffiti fashioned after the late artist Keith Haring has been unmasked and arrested.

Tuesday afternoon, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office nabbed Kevin "Chip" Southworth for allegedly tagging nearly a dozen boxes throughout the city with the bright, faceless images made famous by Haring.

Between August 15 and December 29 of 2013, 11 different traffic control boxes owned and maintained by the city were spray painted with graffiti, incurring more than $1,100 in property damage, according to a Facebook post by the Sheriff’s Office.

The Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville has a new executive director.

Song, dance, fútbol, beer, and Bavaria are all on tap this weekend on the First Coast.

Awards shows aren't easy. That's partly because they're fundamentally unsympathetic affairs in which rich pretty people give each other trophies, and partly because there are only a few real things on which they can be judged: the opening by the host, the montages and features, the speeches, the assorted intangibles and — oh, right — who wins.

By almost any of these measures, Sunday night's Emmy Awards were not only merely bad but really most sincerely bad, or at best (particularly in the case of winners) a bag that's very much mixed.

WJCT
Kevin Meerschaert

The Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville is hoping for some relief from a 14 percent budget cut handed down by the Jacksonville City Council Finance Committee last week.

Executive Director Robert Arleigh White sent an email to supporters this week asking them to lobby the City Council to restore the funding.

The Cultural Council allocates funds to Jacksonville arts and cultural organizations including WJCT.