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THE ARTS AND THE CITY (From left) Howard Rosenthal, president of the Sarasota County Historical Society, introduces Kay Kipling, Kevin Dean, Heidi Connor and William Hartman. Photo by Scott Proffitt WHAT MADE SARASOTA A HAVEN FOR ARTISTS? By Scott Proffitt Staff Writer Just how did Sarasota become an artists' col- were an integral part of the arts community ony? that Sarasota residents still embrace so warmly. The answer was the topic of the latest Conversations at the Crocker history program, held "The history of the Sarasota artists did sort of Jan. 16. start with the John Ringling Museum," Dean began. "Ringling, though broke at the time, Kay Kipling, executive editor of Sarasota put his name on the Ringling College … But Magazine, moderated the discussion, which you also had the Sarasota Art Association, focused on the role of John Ringling and the the longest running gallery and association status of art and artists today in a city that has in Sarasota." been synonymous with fine arts in Florida. Dean illustrated his comments with a slide The panel members were Heidi Connor, a galshow featuring many local artists and their lery professional, curator and art consultant; work. Kevin Dean, director of Selby Gallery at the Ringling College of Art + Design; and William Hartman continued with a history lesson: Hartman of Hartman Gallery, whose parents "When Ringling built his museum and lent his

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