ArtCrush Gala does that to its fundraising record, raises millions

Aspen Art Museum capped its second annual ArtWeek with a big fundraiser raising millions

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen Award for Art winner Gary Simmons enjoys the moment with ArtCrush co-chairs Chandra Johnson, Jamie Tisch and Sara Zilkha.
Polskin Arts/Courtesy photo

Last Friday, the Aspen Art Museum capped its second annual ArtWeek with a big fundraiser. The proceeds will help fund art education and accessibility for the Roaring Fork Valley and beyond.

Approximately 500 guests, artists, cultural leaders, business leaders and philanthropists came to the base of Buttermilk for the ArtCrush Gala, which this year honored Gary Simmons with the Aspen Award for Art and featured a live auction presented by Sotheby’s, which raised more than $4.3 million and included a curated selection of nine works “by some of the most exciting artists working today,” organizers said.

The ArtCrush Gala was the celebratory capstone to the Aspen Art Museum’s second annual Aspen ArtWeek, featuring programs, performances and conversations honoring those whose creativity and vision have influenced contemporary art.

This year’s live auction featured works donated by leading international artists, including Amoako Boafo, Katherine Bernhardt, DRIFT, Jeffrey Gibson, Joel Mesler, Paola Pivi, Gary Simmons, Ryan Sullivan and Mungo Thomson.

The online auction featured an additional 63 lots. Overall, they ranged from under $5,000 to over $200,000 and include painting, sculpture, ceramics, fabric work, work on paper and design art. All had been donated to the museum by a group of incredibly generous artists and galleries, in support of the museum’s artistic and educational programs.