LACMA's big art day packed with presentations, acquisitions
For the Collectors Committee of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Saturday was a big day. The museum's curators packed the morning with presentations of artworks they hoped to acquire; Patina served up lunch beside the Resnick Pavilion, and the evening featured a gala dinner where members voted their preferences.
"The curators' presentations are so compelling that you feel you want to get everything," said actor Julian Sands, attending with his wife, Evgenia Citkowitz.
Will Ferrell called his wife, Viveca Paulin-Ferrell, the night's auction chair, "the house curator," yet expressed his own interest in modern and contemporary furnishings and art, naming Ed Ruscha, Richard Diebenkorn and Roy Lichtenstein among his favorite artists. Like many guests, the two praised Michael Govan, saying the museum's chief executive helped bring energy and focus to the arts in Los Angeles. "You can see the transformation," Ferrell said. "L.A. is becoming an art destination, not just a city with museums."
Museum trustee Willow Bay credited Govan with broadening her interest in art. Attending with his wife, Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert Iger said, "It’s important to support city institutions."
Following cocktails at LACMA's Broad Contemporary Art Museum, the guests threaded their way through Richard Serra's monumental sculptures for the main event: a four-course gourmet dinner and the vote.
An auction further boosted the budget, as Eliza Osborne of Sotheby's sold rare wines, exotic trips and a private performance by Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, among other prizes. Between courses, as voting began, a few extra-generous guests volunteered to donate artworks under consideration, with Steve Tisch the first to step forward, paying more than $450,000 for "The Clock" by Christian Marclay. Tisch is chairman of the New York Giants.
By the time guests polished off their banana-mango-passion-fruit cake, LACMA had eight new acquisitions costing more than $2.7 million. Ann Colgin served as Collectors Committee chair with Lynda Resnick as Acquisitions Committee chair.
-- Ellen Olivier
Photo: From left, Ann Colgin, Will Ferrell, Viveca Paulin-Ferrell and Joe Wender.