On Tuesday, September 26, the Alumni Society of SVA held its second annual Alumni Society Auction at the Visual Arts Gallery in Chelsea. More than 100 works—donated by alumni, faculty, mentors and students—were put up for bid in live and silent auctions, with proceeds going towards scholarships for SVA students.
The well-attended event had collectors and artists mingling with members of the SVA community and placing bids on the paintings, prints, photographs, sculpture and multi-media works throughout the gallery. Then Joseph Tuohy, executive director of the Alumni Society, began a presentation of honors: Mary Heilmann, a painter who has been on the SVA faculty for almost 30 years, and mentor, instructor and Art + Commerce co-founder James Moffat both received Honorary Alumni Awards; and painter Elizabeth Peyton (1987 Fine Arts) was presented with the Distinguished Alumni Award. Tuohy also spoke of the impact that the Alumni Society’s scholarships have on the students who receive them, saying, “It’s really about changing someone’s life.” He then turned over the podium to Sotheby’s auctioneer Christopher Gaillard, who took bids on all 15 works in the live auction, including the evening’s top seller, a new watercolor created by Peyton especially for the auction.
Image: Auctioneer Christopher Gaillard taking bids at the Alumni Society Auction; photo by Laura Yeffeth.