September 30, 2010
Florida’s cultural side is somewhat veiled to the masses, many of whom erroneously associate it as a state strewn with noisy families, brash resorts and Disneyworld. Recognizing Florida as encompassing a unique beauty, emanating sophistication and charm, John Ringling and his wife chose to build their winter home in the stunning surroundings of Sarasota Bay before constructing the Museum of Art in 1931. In doing so, the Ringling’s also created an air of culture, intellectualism and artistic inspiration to eternally hang over Sarasota’s streets.
Today Ringling’s legacy has been cultivated onto an international scale within the world of arts, and the artistically elite now flock to the west coast of Florida to catch a breath of the inspirational artistic air that suspends over the towns here. Given its uncanny knack for providing artistic inspiration – a privilege revealed by the many world-class ballet, opera, theatre and musical shows displayed here – Sarasota is arguably the only place in the world that deserves to host the Ringling International Arts Festival.