The 2019 Benefit Gala
The Annual Benefit Gala raises critical funds that directly support Socrates Sculpture Park and our mission to support artists and produce free cultural programming that serves more than 200,000 people annually.
If you would like to make a donation to the Park online, please click HERE
Checks should be made payable to SOCRATES SCULPTURE PARK and sent to:
Socrates Sculpture Park
PO Box 6259
Long Island City, NY 11106
Questions? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 718-956-1819 x102
ABOUT THE EVENT
On the evening of October 3rd, over 250 guests joined us to celebrate the extraordinary accomplishments of two fantastic individuals: arts advocate and philanthropist, Agnes Gund & the artist, Xaviera Simmons. Both of these women share a commitment to social justice and public art that is accessible to all.
The 2019 Gala was was hosted at Mark di Suvero’s magnificent waterfront studio, where guests mingled among di Suvero’s sculptures and enjoyed cocktails, dinner, and live music. Highlights of the evening included a surprise aria from Metropolitan Opera Soprano, Leah Hawkins, that kicked off our remarks; Honoree Xaviera Simmons’ powerful call for action on the most urgent social issues and inequalities facing American society today; a touching tribute to Agnes Gund from Anita Contini, Art Lead at Bloomberg Philanthropies; and artist Miya Ando gifting her beautiful special benefit edition, ‘Four Season Mandala (Under the Silver River),’ to both our honorees!
It was an incredible event and thanks to our donors, this was our most successful Gala yet! All contributions support Socrates’ programming and operations, helping keep the Park free and open to the public, supporting artists to create public works on site, and presenting rich, dynamic programming for our surrounding community.
Agnes Gund is president emerita of the Museum of Modern Art and chair of MoMA PS1. She joined the MoMA Board in 1976 and served as president from 1991 until 2002. She is founder and chair emerita of Studio in a School, established in response to budget cuts that virtually eliminated arts classes from NYC public schools. A philanthropist and collector of modern and contemporary art, Ms. Gund serves on the boards of the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies, and the Morgan Library and Museum. She is co-founder and chair of the Center for Curatorial Leadership, and honorary trustee of the National YoungArts Foundation, Independent Curators International and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland. A civic leader and staunch supporter of education and social justice, she launched the Art for Justice Fund in 2017 in partnership with the Ford Foundation and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors to support criminal justice reform in the U.S. Ms. Gund received the National Medal of the Arts from President Clinton in 1997, and the J. Paul Getty Medal in 2018.
Agnes Gund is an extraordinary supporter and advocate of Socrates Sculpture Park and served for almost a decade on the Board of Trustees.
Xaviera Simmons’s sweeping body of work spans photography, performance, video, sound, sculpture, and installation. She is the recipient of a 2018 Art for Justice Award and has exhibited nationally and internationally. Her work has been included in major exhibitions at The Studio Museum in Harlem, The Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, The Public Art Fund, The Sculpture Center, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, and Brooklyn Museum, among many others. Her works are in major museum and private collections including The Museum of Modern Art, The Nasher Museum, Deutsche Bank, UBS, The Guggenheim Museum, The Agnes Gund Art Collection, The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, The Studio Museum in Harlem, ICA Miami, High Museum, and Perez Art Museum Miami. In 2020 Simmons will be a teaching artist and fellow at Harvard University and she will present new bodies of work in exhibitions at The Highline NY, SFMOMA and The Institute for Contemporary Art, Virginia Commonwealth University among many other institutions.
We are also pleased to announce that Socrates Sculpture Park is commissioning a new work from Xaviera Simmons, which will be on view in 2020.
SPECIAL BENEFIT EDITION
‘Four Seasons Mandala (Under the Silver River)’
Dyed Bodhi (Ficus Religiosa) leaves, pure silver thread, monofilament on archival ragboard
20 x 20 inches (24 x 24 inches framed)
12 with 6 A.P.s, each unique
Pictured: Miya Ando, ‘4 Seasons Mandalas (Under The Silver River) – #4 Early Summer,’ 2019, Image courtesy the Artist