On Thursday night, Jan. 26, art lovers, enthusiasts, lifelong learners, and curious minds gathered at Sarasota Art Museum of Ringling College to attend the long-anticipated return of the 10×10 lecture series. The event was sold-out, filling every seat in the Museum’s McGuire Hall.
A local favorite of the Sarasota community that took a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the 10×10 events showcase and introduce a diverse group of leaders and creative minds. Events are structured to feature 10 speakers who present 10 images of their work, interest, or inspiration. Slides advance automatically every 30 seconds, creating informal and fast-paced presentations that offer informative and thought-provoking snapshots.
This January’s event sponsored by Ringling College and American Institute of Architects Gulf Coast Chapter featured the following speakers:
- Justin Bloom, Environmental Activist
- Chelsea Bruner, Art Historian
- Tom Casmer, Illustrator and Sculptor
- Louise Converse, Cheesemonger
- Lisa DiFranza, Painter
- Michael Halflants, Architect
- Marty Hylton, Architecture Sarasota President
- Bruce Marsh, Painter
- Mike Solomon, Multi-Media Artist
- Jarred Wilson, Collector
The speakers were incredibly diverse; Justin Bloom, founder of Suncoast Waterkeeper spoke of his ongoing mission to protect and restore the Suncoast’s waterways; Ringling College’s Dr. Chelsea Bruner and Tom Casmer gave presentations on the Leonard Reid House project and his sculpture practice, respectively; and, Louise Converse, owner of Artisan Cheese Company, told the story of “how the Bayeux Tapestry led her to open a cheese shop.”
The event has been organized since 2009 by local architect Michael Halflants of Halflants + Pichette Architects and Tim Jaeger, local artist and director and chief curator of Ringling College’s Galleries and Exhibitions. Past speakers have included curators, painters, politicians, architects, environmentalists, chefs, musicians, curators, museum directors, graphic designers, anthropologists, and a mathematician.
Sarasota Art Museum Executive Director Virginia Shearer was thrilled to be able to host the event on the Museum Campus.
“As a premier platform for education, exposure, and experimentation, the mission and vision of Sarasota Art Museum is to inspire these new ideas and new ways of being,” she said. “This event really ticks all the boxes of education, inspiration, and bringing the community together to engage with each other and maybe even learn something new.”
It has been said many times that Sarasota is the cultural mecca of Florida. There is a rich history linked to arts and culture dating back to the early 1920s when John Ringling started to winter here. Since then, the accessibility to the visual and performing arts coupled with its vacation-destination surroundings, the area has grown substantially and attracted new residents from all over the world.
“We are so fortunate in this community to have incredible artists, thought leaders, creative minds — people who are just doing really cool things,” Jaeger said. “The 10x10s were created to help showcase all we have going on locally and help people feel more connected.”
The next 10×10 is on the horizon in the coming months. Visit the 10×10 website for updated event details and ticket information.