Arts Advocates retains Mark Ormond as curator, adds two paintings to its collection at his recommendation

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Arts Advocates retains Mark Ormond as curator, adds two paintings to its collection at his recommendation

In an effort to enhance its representation of Sarasota Art Colony artists, two works by painter Jimmy Ernst were purchased.

SARASOTA, FL – Arts Advocates is pleased to announce it has retained the services of Mark Ormond to curate its collection of over 50 pieces by Florida artists and assist with the long-range strategic plan for the collection.

Since 1970, Arts Advocates has been acquiring works of art which represent a wide range of media and styles dating from the 1930s to the present. Ormond has been tasked, in part, to assist the organization with finding works by Sarasota Art Colony artists. From the 1940s through the 1970s, Sarasota was a thriving art colony, recognized nationally for the celebrated painters and sculptors who had homes and studios in the area. These artists came from across the United States and had a significant impact on the local art scene, representing major styles and trends of 20th century art.

In December, Ormond recommended purchasing two works by painter Jimmy Ernst: Sun Chronology (1958) and Image Scape #21 (1961), both of which met the organization’s criteria for acquisitions. Ernst maintained a home on Casey Key, was a contemporary of other well recognized artists such as Syd Solomon, and was not already represented in the collection. His works are held in more than 30 museums and private collections, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Guggenheim Museum. Arts Advocates members voted to acquire these two pieces.

A native of Boston, Massachusetts, Mark Ormond has had a distinguished career in the art world for more than 40 years working as a museum director and curator, university professor, writer, independent curator and consultant to institutions and private individuals. A graduate of George Washington University and the University of Pennsylvania, his primary focus of interests has been modern and contemporary art. Ormond has organized and coordinated over 300 exhibitions including Artists Who Made Sarasota Famous (2012, Art Center Sarasota), Florida Focus: Tampa Bay (2005, Gulf Coast Museum of Art), and Modern Art in Florida 1948-1970 (2003, Tampa Museum of Art). In 2000, he organized a statewide survey of recent work of artists living in Florida for the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art. From 2008 to 2019, Ormond was curator of exhibitions for Ringling College Galleries at Ringling College of Art and Design where he oversaw over 90 exhibitions and events a year in five campus galleries. From 1999 to 2019, he taught courses in the business of fine arts and held the role of curator in contemporary art at Ringling College.

For more information about Arts Advocates, visit


The Fine Arts Society of Sarasota, Inc. Arts Advocates, founded in 1969 as The Fine Arts Society of Sarasota, Inc., is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Its mission is to inspire creativity, advance education and connect the community to the arts. Arts Advocates awards scholarships to local students pursuing careers in the arts; supports local arts and educational organizations and sponsors art-related events; and promotes the creative works of Florida artists by purchasing, collecting, exhibiting and presenting these works to residents and visitors. To learn more, visit

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