On October 25, 2019, Creative Time, the NYC-based non-profit arts organization, celebrated its annual gala, which brought together guests from the worlds of art, fashion, and philanthropy. The evening was co-chaired by Jon Neidich and Kate Young, and honored artist Jenny Holzer, who recently presented VIGIL, a new series of light projections that addressed gun violence in America at Rockefeller Center with Creative Time. The annual fundraiser supports Creative Time in its mission to amplify artists’ voices, ignite conversations on current issues, and engage audiences in dynamic public art. The evening hosted notable guests Sofia Coppola, Rachel Weisz, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Ronson, Nicholas Braun and Jenny Holzer, among others.
As the evening commenced, guests entered through a neon-lit tunnel, which opened into the luminescent, futuristic cocktail room where patrons mingled in the environment designed by Van Wyck & Van Wyck and enjoyed cocktails by Absolut Elyx. At 8PM, attendees headed into the candle-lit dining room, designed by Bronson van Wyck, for a seated dinner with a three-course meal by Yann Nury. During dinner remarks, Justine Ludwig and Athena Art Finance Managing Director Naomi Baigell announced artist Shaun Leonardo as the recipient of the first Athena Art Finance Social Impact Award. Leonardo is best known for his performance work that explores relationships between masculinity, race, sports, and culture. The award, which was announced at last year’s Creative Time Gala, celebrates individuals who, through their work, seek to make the world a better place and help us reimagine what our future can be.
To commemorate Creative Time’s 2019 Gala honoring Jenny Holzer, Prospect collaborated with Creative Time to produce a set of three limited-edition tote bags made of PVC, each depicting an iconic text by the artist. The bags featured the works PEOPLE WHO DON’T WORK WITH THEIR HANDS ARE PARASITES, RAISE BOYS AND GIRLS THE SAME WAY, and LAUGH HARD AT THE ABSURDLY EVIL, allowing all guests to bring home a work of art. In addition to Jenny’s recent project at Rockefeller Center, the artist has collaborated with Creative Time in the past. In 2004, Holzer and Creative Time presented For New York City: Planes and Projections, a two-part project—in the sky and on public landmarks—partially consisting of a squadron of airplanes that flew in succession along the Hudson River pulling banners emblazoned with texts, including Holzer’s Truisms and a quote from Abraham Lincoln. The project continued in 2005 with For the City at various iconic locations.
Notable guests included artists Waris Ahluwalia, Laurie Anderson, Danny Baez, Jenny Holzer, Shaun Leonardo, Eva LeWitt, Jill Magid, Duke Riley, Taryn Simon, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Chloe Wise, and Kennedy Yanko; writer-director Sofia Coppola; musician Mark Ronson; actors Nicholas Braun, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Rachel Weisz; Creative Time Gala Co-Chairs Jon Neidich and Kate Young; fashion designers Aurora James, Victor Glemaud, Wes Gordon and Paul Arnhold; Executive Director of the Armory Show Nicole Berry; TV host Nev Schulman; choreographer Jonah Bokaer; Princess Firyal of Jordan; curator Kyle DeWoody; Director and Chief Curator of The Studio Museum Thelma Golden; Creative Time Board Members Phil Aarons and Shelley Fox Aarons, Suzanne Cochran, Pablo Helguera, Cristina Grajales, Renee Rockefeller, Melissa Schiff Soros, and Ellen Taubman; and Creative Time Executive Director Justine Ludwig and Creative Time Deputy Director Natasha Logan.
The 2019 Creative Time Gala was sponsored by Skylight Studios, Absolut Elyx, Athena Art Finance, Van Wyck & Van Wyck, BFA, and Brooklyn Brewery. The 2019 Creative Time Party was generously supported by INDX and Parm.