In 1996, Art Center Sarasota was fortunate to add to the grounds, the Sam and Sally Shapiro Sculpture Garden. Through the generous support of Sam Shapiro, a past president of Art Center Sarasota, and his wife Sally, the garden wrapping around the front and north side of the Art Center, was designed to provide a beautiful entrance to the Center and to highlight talented sculptors of this community.
In June 2011, Sam Shapiro generously offered to fund the improvements to the Sculpture Garden, adding new features to make the garden a more user friendly contemplative space for the community to enjoy. The garden improvement plans include: the addition of a shade structure, additional outdoor seating, a Japanese sand and stone garden, extension of the bricked areas and paths, new plantings and general sprucing up of the existing gardens.
Bob Garner, an avid gardener and art lover, member of the Art Center and friend of Sam's who was instrumental in the 1996 garden initiative, has generously volunteered to consult on the new garden features.
Currently in the garden are works by:
Roy Bellas, A.S. Briseno, Woody & Jessie Candish, Dwight Conley, John Dehn, Jack Dowd, David Gonya, Saul Howard, Greg Johnson, Dennis Kowal, David Peirick, Vicky Randall, Dale Rieke, Volf Roitman, Lea Vivot