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In addition to her generous financial gifts, Ruth Funk also donated a textile collection to Florida Institute of Technology in 2005.  Word soon spread about the university’s exciting new textile project and the collection attracted new donations from textile aficionados across the country. 

The Florida Tech collection includes:

  • Traditional handmade textiles, garments and related accessories from Africa, Central Asia, China, India, Mexico, Central and South America spanning the early 19th to mid-20th centuries. 
  • European and North American embroidery, quilts and needlework spanning 18th through early-20th centuries.
  • European samplers spanning the 16th through the 19th centuries.
  • Early 20th century American and European costume and related accessories; contemporary wearable art.

A small portion of the collection is divided into “hands-on” objects, not suitable for display, which are part of the Education Collection and are available for students to study as part of the “History of Textiles” course curriculum.

Exhibits rotate throughout the year, with a primary focus being to highlight the artistic, technical and cultural significance of the collection displayed. Through our exhibitions, the Ruth Funk Gallery provides a forum for expanding perceptions of the visual arts and encourages dialogue about traditions, cultural identity and aesthetics.