The Meaning Behind "Circle of Thirds"

Circle of Thirds

Standing in the lobby of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, you'll find yourself beneath a living art installation of 20-foot-long pink, orange, and red ribbons.

Titled “Circle of Thirds,” the piece was design by the artist Anne Patterson, a Fellow with the Hermitage Artist Retreat.

Circle of Thirds represents the three key stakeholders of the Community Foundation – donors, nonprofits, and the community.

The colors express a vibrancy and an energy, representing the Community Foundation’s central role as the caring heart of our community.

The nature of the material and the softness and movement of the ribbons create a piece of art that is welcoming, inviting, and accessible.

Words of Wisdom, Words of Hope

Our community’s dreams, hopes, and wishes are expressed in words written on the ribbons by our donors, nonprofit partners, and community members. Depending on the angle you can see various heartwarming phrases like: Lead a good life. Just believe. The world can dream better.

The three most prevalent words: happiness, love, and peace.

Below are photos from Anne Patterson's visit to Alta Vista Elementary School, where she encouraged students to write their own hopes and dreams for the future on ribbons that will become part of the Circle of Thirds in 2018.


Three Parts of a Whole

Circle of Thirds represents the three key stakeholders of the Community Foundation – donors, nonprofits, and the community. 


Helping good people do good things

We are honored to work with many caring individuals, families, and organizations to nurture and strengthen our community.

Through our donors’ present-day giving and charitable estate planning, we empower philanthropists to leverage their resources and amplify their charitable passion and impact.

Through the grants and good work made possible by our generous donors and nonprofit partners, we strengthen our community in these and many more areas:

  • Education
  • Health and Human Services
  • Arts
  • Civic Engagement
  • Animal Welfare
  • Environment


Taking care of each other and our community


Partners in making donor dreams a reality

Our nonprofit partners bring to life donors’ dreams of a thriving, healthy community through their work. In addition to the grant provided to impact important causes, we strengthen local nonprofit organizations through our nonprofit services, training workshops, and volunteer consultants to ensure the have the tools and knowledge they need to work effectively and efficiently.

“I love the idea of circle – we are all one. We give, and what we give and how we give circles back to nourish us, too. By using the word “thirds” it is clear that without all three parties the whole will not be complete.
I hope this will make people feel really powerful and in control of their own lives and destinies, which I think is the best thing you can give someone. To make people realize that they can determine who they want to be, where they want to be, and what they want to do with their lives.
A piece of art really does have the power to transform lives.”
                                     – Anne Patterson
Anne Patterson