OBITUARY: Bradley Jeffries

Bradley Jeffries (Sanibel), 72, passed away on June 4, 2021, in Ft. Myers, Florida after a lengthy illness. Bradley was born in Columbia, Kentucky to Dr. Todd and Ilene Jeffries (both deceased). She is survived by her first cousins, Robert Lynn Jeffries (Columbia, KY) and Ann Todd Jeffries Dupree (Lexington, KY) and their families.

Bradley graduated from the University of Kentucky with a degree in Journalism in 1971 and followed that career from Kentucky to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to Dubuque, IA until settling in Sanibel, Florida where she had a column in the newspaper and a weekly spot on the television news. In the late 70’s she had a chance meeting with Robert Rauschenberg on Captiva Island, and they hit it off immediately. Mr. Rauschenberg was a very important and influential artist who hired Bradley to be his business and life manager. Her life with him included being on the Board of Directors of Change, Inc and The Rauschenberg Foundation; two projects that are still making a difference in the lives of artists. Bradley’s travels with Rauschenberg took her on incredible adventures all over the world and exposed her to extraordinary opportunities. During Bradley’s almost 30 years of working with Rauschenberg until his death in 2008, he gifted her with many of his original artworks.

The family and friends of Bradley Jeffries plan to use her expansive and never previously shown Rauschenberg pieces as a means for memorializing Bradley. Her collection will be included in the exhibit “Rauschenberg: A Gift in Your Pocket” opening on April 25th at the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at Florida Southwestern State College in Ft. Myers for display throughout the summer. After which her collection will travel to The University of Kentucky Art Museum and Black Mountain College Museum & Arts Center for display into 2023. After her collection of Rauschenbergs completes the planned memorial presentations, pieces will be donated to each of the exhibiting institutions in an ongoing memorial to Bradley and her legacy of working in the arts.

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