I’ve often described Sarasota as a city to get grounded, and it’s easy to heal the parts of you that need it simply by taking advantage of the aspects of our city that are good for the soul. May I introduce to you the Top Five Places to Gain Perspective.
1) Turrell Skyspace — Imagine lying down and gazing into the sky after sunset. It’s blatantly changing colors from bright pink to lime green and your only job is to relax, enjoy the process and gain perspective. Sure, it’s likely you watched the sky change colors a few nights in college, but I bet you’ve not done it as an adult. Fear not: you can again and you won’t even have a foggy head the next day. The “Joseph’s Coat” Skyspace, designed and installed by John Turrell at the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, opened recently and you’ve got to check it out. It’s a giant room with creeping fig climbing the walls. There’s a giant hole in the ceiling where, just after sunset, lights on the wall trip your mind and make you see colors. The cost is only $10 (same price, similar effect, if you know what I mean) and you will leave having gained something. Enjoy.
2) Clothesline — It’s hard to find the art galleries of the world that actually fulfill the mission of moving a society forward, and we are lucky enough to have one in Sarasota. 529 Clothesline Gallery is our epicenter for creative energy; Van Jazmin teamed with Austin Kowal are making their mark on the Florida art scene. Unforgettable shows such as /HYPNAGOGIA have made this gallery one we should be proud of. Take a gander at one of their shows, and while you’re at it, think about what the brilliant society shifters are trying to convey on Clothesline’s walls.
3) Ringling Bridge — Let’s face it. When a friend calls and asks, “Wanna do a bridge walk?” what they are actually saying is, “Let’s go gossip where no one can hear us.” The John Ringling Bridge has turned into a place to get fit, to gossip, to think, to flirt with joggers, to see and be seen and to take in the glory of Sarasota’s beauty. From the vantage point of the walking path, the bridge is about human interaction and connection to each other and our city, and there’s no better way to gain perspective then to walk across that sexy ribbon and experience all that I just listed. Do it daily. It will change you for the better.
4) Selby Gardens — Can you say, “14 acres of Buddha-licious inner perspective goodness?” If you can, then throw down everything you are doing right now and go to the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens to buy a membership. Why? Because with a membership, you can go to the garden and bring guests for free almost any time you want. Selby Gardens is like the mothership of inner discovery, with expansive lawns, winding paths, reflecting ponds and thousands and thousands of plants (even this huge rare flower pictured). They even have a Bodhi Tree (the tree under which Buddha attained enlightenment) overlooking Sarasota Bay. If that doesn’t scream “find perspective here,” nothing does. Every single turn within the gardens offers a new outlook, and for $60 a year you can’t go wrong. Buy one for your mom and your dad and your sister or brother and your best friend. Hell, buy one for your sworn enemies, because goodnesss knows they could use a Bodhi Tree, right?
5) Draw It Out Art Therapy — Cara Levitt is an art therapy goddess. She takes clients one-on-one five days a week, but on Saturdays she takes on every one … all at once. It’s a full-on BYOB art class blowout designed to make you think — to gain a better perspective of life and how you live within it. She supplies brushes, canvas, paints, chalk, glue and anything else to make you feel creative. You provide a libation of your choice and the need for perspective. Cara’s classes are $40 and take place every Saturday from 12:00 until 4:00 p.m.