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Sarah Tumm

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Sarah Tumm and Tootie 02SArtist:  Sarah Tumm

Genre:  Graphic Arts

Website:  http://ViloStudio.com

Her Art:

Sarah Tumm is a graphic artist. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from the International Academy of Design and Technology. “This shaped my foundation in design and appreciation for fine art,” says Sarah on her Vilo Studio website. “LADT’s teachings of Mies von der Rohe’s ‘less is more’ and Robert Venturi’s ‘less is a bore’ operate as my fundamental principles.”

 

Portrait of Tootie McGregor Tumm

Tootie McGregor TerrySarah has contributed a rare portrait of Fort Myers’ benefactress Tootie McGregor Terry to the Fort Myers Founding Females portrait exhibition. The portrait is a synthesis of digitized vintage photographs of Tootie and a 3D digital scan of a bust of her cast in 1989 by North Fort Myers sculptor Don Wilkins. “With this 3D digital scan data, I created a portrait of Tootie, with the addition of some modern day software technology touches,” explains Tumm of her process, who employed an average of 5 different CAD design/3D software programs to create the portrait. “The vision was to create Tootie during the early stages of her life, when Tootie was married to Ambrose McGregor.”

Sarah framed Tootie against a palm-lined McGregor Boulevard, which Tootie’s second husband had paved and renamed for Ambrose in 1913, completing a project that Tootie initiated prior to her death on August 17, 1912. Tumm used the same 3D digital scan technique to produce the background image of McGregor Boulevard. “Marrying of the two made everything come together,” Sarah explains. “This was the process for incorporating her historical and local importance to the portrait.”

From 1900 until her death on August 17, 1912, Tootie McGregor Terry had more money invested in Fort Myers than any other person. She was the owner of two large orange groves, numerous tracts of land scattered throughout the county, and the Royal Palm Hotel, which attracted Royal Palm Front Entrance 2numerous celebrities and millionaires to Fort Myers. Many, like wealthy Montana cattleman John T. Murphy, made Fort Myers their winter home. (Murphy built an estate that became the Burroughs Home in 1918.)

Tootie almost single-handedly changed the riverscape of Fort Myers. At the time she Royal Palm and Casino from Wharfpurchased the Royal Palm in 1907, the river bank ran along present-day Bay Street. The waterfront was strewn with rubbish and decaying hyacinths and characterized by rickety old wharves and decrepit boathouses. Rather than just hire workers to clean the banks in and around the Royal Palm, Tootie proposed that the city construct a seawall along the riverfront 200 or so feet off the bank and Royal Palm and Casino from Waterfrontdredge up sand and shell to fill in the gap. The city agreed, with the seawall eventually extending from Monroe all the way to Billy’s Creek. In fact, had Tootie gotten her way, there would have even been a 75-foot-wide promenade along the water’s edge, but she couldn’t persuade the affected landowners to give up their riparian rights.

Royal Palm and Casino from Waterfront 2Tootie and new husband Dr. Marshall O. Terry were also responsible for bringing both golf and spring training to Fort Myers. They fostered the latter by donating 40 acres for the city to use as the Philadelphia Athletics’ spring training facility. Today this tract bears the name of Terry Park.

Terry, Tootie McGregor SWFL Historical SocBut Tootie is probably best remembered for getting the roads paved in and around Fort Myers. In 1912, she became so frustrated with cattle and other animals damaging and defecating in the streets, she made an offer to the city and Lee County that they couldn’t refuse. In exchange for their promise to pave Riverside from Whiskey Creek to downtown Fort Myers, Tootie agreed to have the 20-mile stretch from Whiskey Creek to Punta Rassa paved, putting in all necessary bridges and culverts along the way. She even set up a fund to maintain the road for the next five years. And she had the name of the newly paved road changed from Riverside Drive to McGregor Boulevard in honor of her first Ambrose McGregorhusband,Ambrose, who left her a very wealthy woman when he died of cancer at the age of 58 in 1900. Spurred by this activity, the city went on to asphalt all the streets in downtown Fort Myers which, until then, were just sand, dirt and oyster shell.

In 1913, Dr. Terry installed a fountain in the intersection of Main, MLK (formerly Anderson), Cleveland, McGregor (previously Riverside Drive) and Carson Street to memorialize all that his wife had done to further the town’s development. Known as the Tootie McGregor Fountain, it was moved in the 1950s to the Fort Myers Country Club on McGregor Boulevard.

Tootie TooIn the ensuing 100 years, only two public artworks have been added by Fort Myers to honor one of the city’s most important benefactors, civic leaders and developers. The first is a transfer solvent print of the fountain that was rendered by internationally-acclaimed artist Darryl Pottorf in 1990, and the other is a bust of Tootie McGregor cast by Don Wilkins in 1989. The latter is part of the Harborside Collection, which is on display in the north galleria of the Event Center. But many residents and visitors have never seen the bust and have no idea what McGregor looked like although they’ve undoubtedly heard her name on numerous occasions. Sarah Tumm’s portrait will finally enable thousands to put a face with Tootie’s name.

For more information about the exhibit, please email tom@artswfl.com or telephone 239-691-2292. For more information on Sarah or to commission work by the artist, please email studiovilo@gmail.com, telephone 941-999-1239 or visit.

 

 

Alliance to feature graphic art of Vilo Studio’s Sarah Tumm in members’ gallery beginning August 7 (08-01-15)

Sarah Tumm and Tootie 02SGraphic work by Sarah Tumm of Vilo Studios will be featured in the member gallery at the Alliance for the Arts from August 7 through September 19, 2015. This will be Tumm’s first solo gallery exhibition, and she will be in attendance to discuss her work and answer questions about her inspiration and process throughout the 5-7 p.m. opening reception on Friday, August 7.

Sarah Tumm is a graphic artist. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from the International Academy of Design and Technology. “This shaped my foundation in design and appreciation for fine art,” says Sarah on her Vilo Studio website. “LADT’s teachings of Mies von der Rohe’s ‘less is more’ and Robert Venturi’s ‘less is a bore’ operate as my fundamental principles.”

The Alliance for the Arts is located at 10091 McGregor Blvd, Fort Myers, FL 33919.

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