Great communities create great organizations – not the other way around. In 1979 BIG ARTS was created by and for the community and owes its rich history to a small band of dedicated artists who drew inspiration from each other and from the breathtaking island beauty that infused their work with grace and authenticity. They set out to create a special gathering place where artistic and educational experiences were accessible to all. Today that vision is alive and well. With the help of our loyal donors and supporters, BIG ARTS will carry that vision forward -- providing joy, inspiration and a sense of community for generations to come.



To create great arts, entertainment and learning experiences that
always inspire, enrich and delight.


Provide an array of quality entertainment, arts and education programs that enrich and nurture the lives of Sanibel and Captiva residents and visitors through:

  • Professionally led arts and enrichment classes and workshops for students of all ages.

  • Stimulating and informative lectures and group discussions with renowned national thought leaders and educators.

  • Dynamic visual and performing arts presentations of the highest caliber.

“For 8 or 9 years, we met in each other’s homes, in churches, at the library, on the green or at the beach – wherever we could find space for shows and gatherings. It started out as artists and friends supporting each other and dreaming...and it grew in leaps and bounds.”
- (Former Mayor) Mike Klein & Polly Matsumoto, Members of Original Founders Group