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Home » News » New Studio Art Glass Pavilion at The Ringling Museum

New Studio Art Glass Pavilion at The Ringling Museum

Published September 8, 2015

John Ringling’s gift to the state of Florida transformed the cultural landscape and the city of Sarasota. His passion for collecting and vision to serve the widest possible audience by creating this awe-inspiring facility to display masterpieces for the public to enjoy has served as an example for many to follow. We are grateful to John and Mable Ringling for their vision—and for the donors who have followed in their footsteps to transform the Museum into a center for the study and appreciation of the visual and performing arts.

Philip and Nancy Kotler and Warren and Margot Coville have chosen to continue the tradition set by the Museum’s founder with a generous act of philanthropy. Together, through the power of giving, they have transformed The Ringling in its collections and in the experience artists and visitors will enjoy for decades to come.

Philip and Nancy Kotler said,

“Having the glass pavilion as a place to display our collection of studio art glass is a dream come true because we wanted to share this magnificent art form with as many people as possible.”

The Kotlers and the Covilles have partnered to provide the lead financial support for a major 5,500 square foot expansion to the John M. McKay Visitor Pavilion, creating The Kotler-Coville Glass Pavilion. With an anticipated opening in the fall of 2017, The Kotler-Coville Glass Pavilion will provide a permanent presence for studio art glass at The Ringling in a prominent location that nearly all Museum guests will pass through during their visit. The pavilion will also serve as a new formal entrance to the Historic Asolo Theater and provide improvements to the artist facilities, greatly enhancing the Museum’s growing performance programming.

Warren Coville commented,

“When I heard that the kotlers were going to initiate a process for the construction of a glass pavilion, and that it was margot’s intent to gift her collection to the ringling, it was just a ‘no brainer’ that we would join with them.”

“Mega World 5.4

“Mega World 5.4,” 1989. By Josh Simpson. Gift of Philip and Nancy Kotler to the Ringling Museum of Art, 2012.

In addition to their remarkable financial support, both the Kotlers and the Covilles have gifted their prestigious collections of studio art glass to The Ringling. Soon, when visitors enter the Museum, they will be greeted with floor-to-ceiling displays of studio art glass in a facility designed specifically to showcase this unique medium. Objects will rotate on a regular basis, encouraging visitors to come again and again to engage with European and American masters in the studio art glass movement.

Steven High, executive director of The Ringling said:

“It is remarkable that two philanthropic families can join together to create something so exciting, all with the hopes of expanding arts opportunities for Sarasota and the state of Florida.”


Robert Palusky, American, born 1942 / Last Waltz, 2004 / Gift of Philip and Nancy Kotler, 2012 / SN11325.29

This noteworthy act of philanthropy was inspired by the donors’ mutual appreciation for studio art glass and the performing arts. The Ringling’s commitment to both theater and studio art glass aligned perfectly as each family determined the best home for their collection. The Kotlers and Covilles have a deep commitment to Sarasota and the arts community. They began speaking together with Museum staff about the impact a facility like this would have— not only on raising public awareness of studio art glass but also by enhancing the experience all visitors have when they come to The Ringling and the Historic Asolo Theater.

Visionary philanthropy created The Ringling in the 1930s, forever changing the face of Sarasota. The Kotlers and Covilles have generously continued this tradition enabling The Ringling to engage generations to come with the best in visual and performing arts. For that, we are grateful and look forward to 2017 and the opening of The Kotler-Coville Glass Pavilion.

General Admission & Ticketing

General Admission includes the Ringling Museum of Art, special exhibitions, Ca’ d’Zan Mansion, Circus Museum, and Mable’s historic Rose Garden, all on 66 acres of lushly landscaped grounds.

Adults are $25
Senior citizens (65 and over) are $20
Children ages 6-17 are $5
A three-day pass is $35
Free Admission for children 5 and under accompanied by an adult, museum member.

Advance tickets are available online or by calling 941-358-3180.

Tor additional info, visit and view our post as covered by the Herald Tribune earlier this year.