SarasotaMOD Weekend to Honor Architect Carl Abbott

Todays News


Expect SarasotaMOD Weekend 2020 to continue without a hitch this November 6-8, despite many other event cancellations in the community this fall. The annual three-day festival, presented by Sarasota Architectural Foundation (SAF), is known for welcoming visitors to immerse themselves in the architecture of the Sarasota School movement. And with Covid-19 in mind, SAF has redesigned MOD Weekend to amply meet CDC guidelines while continuing to offer its novel touring and visitation experiences. Safety precautions will include timed entries, smaller groups, outdoor/open-air settings, mandatory face coverings and limited ticket availability. 

This year, internationally-renowned modern architect Carl Abbott, FAIA, is set to be MOD's honoree. “Carl Abbott has been an icon in Sarasota and the worldwide architectural community for more than 50 years,” says SAF Board Chair Anne Essner.  We are thrilled to partner with him in this year’s programming and look forward to welcoming visitors to our latest MOD Weekend.”

The festival kicks off with a virtual presentation: In/Formed by the Land: Carl Abbott’s Architecture for Nature, on Friday, November 6. Abbott will speak candidly about his career, influences and projects in a recorded conversation with Anne-Marie Russell, Executive Director of the Sarasota Art Museum. Russell is also the curator of the Museum’s newest exhibition for SarasotaMOD: “Carl Abbott: Architect for Nature,” dedicated to his vernacular art and mid-century modern style. Saturday night’s “MidMOD Weekend Party” at the Sarasota Art Museum will give guests a first glimpse of the exhibition, and on Sunday, November, 8, the Museum will offer exclusive access to the exhibition to MOD ticket holders on a timed entry basis. Meanwhile, an additional exhibit will feature Abbott’s iconic blue sculpture, on display at Art Center Sarasota, and with timed entry in small groups. SAF shared that Abbott will available to meet visitors and offer brief remarks later in the afternoon on Saturday. 

In addition, Abbott has personally curated self-guided driving tour itineraries for the weekend, aptly named “Carl by Car,” North and South—allowing two separate onsite visits to residential and commercial projects that you’d be unable to access on your own. Admission includes a map, descriptive booklet, and a new digital access feature that can be viewed on smartphones or tablets—premiering 10 short videos capturing Abbott as he explains his creative process for the chosen projects. In addition, MOD’s newest guided tour, “Carl & Co. by Kayak” will provide a backside waterside vantage point by kayaking to some of his projects, along with other houses by Sarasota School and modern architects located on the water. These tours will run on Saturday and Sunday from Siesta Key.  

“Sarasota in the 1950s was one of the most important places in the world for architectural creativity, where the greatest design movement of the day came together,” says Abbott.  “There’s a reason a handful of communities in the world stand out for architectural innovation.  Sarasota’s one of them. You really do have to see it to believe it.”

Tickets go on sale September 28, 2020. For a detailed schedule of more SarasotaMOD events and to make ticket purchases, head here.

Exterior night shot of Butterfield residence, photography by Sean Harris.

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