This October, The New York Academy of Art presents ‘Artists for Artists’ – a reimagining of the Academy's annual ‘Take Home a Nude’ fundraiser gala. The new name is especially meaningful in this unprecedented year, when supporting artists and art education is more crucial than ever.
N ow in its 29th year, the New York Academy of Art's annual autumn gala has a new name, and a revised schedule of events to fit the times. ‘Artists for Artists’, formerly known as ‘Take Home a Nude,’ better reflects the gala's mission: as ever, renowned contemporary artists and graduates of the academy have donated an array of works for auction, with proceeds helping to fund scholarships for the school's next generation of artists.
As opposed to years past, this year's gala will take place over a full month – from 1 to 26 October, more than 200 artworks will be on exhibition at the Academy in TriBeCa (at 111 Franklin Street), available to the general public for in-person viewings by appointment only, in a socially-distanced space. For the duration of the exhibition, works will be open for bidding through artsy.net. Highlights include artworks donated by Ross Bleckner, Hugo Guinness, Donald Baechler, Shepard Fairey and others.
“The gala is now a chance for artists, especially young and emerging artists, to benefit directly by donating, and to be seen and get exposure for their work.”
On 20 October, the gala will culminate with ‘Artists for Artists, Live,’ a special, livestreamed digital event featuring guest appearances by longtime celebrity supporters of the Academy including Brooke Shields, Padma Lakshmi and Liev Schreiber. The event will be streamed on the Academy's website, as well as on YouTube.
“For our students, who had to leave their studios back in March, there's no substitute for this close-knit community – the energy, the constant dialogue – and I'm very excited for the livestream event, as it's a chance to bring people into the school again and communicate why the Academy is so unique,” says David Kratz, President of the New York Academy of Art.
Another change to this year's format concerns the artists directly; previously, artworks were donated to the event outright, but this year artists can choose to receive up to 50% of the proceeds from the sale of their work. Kratz says this change is vital in this unprecedented year.
“The mission behind Artists for Artists is especially important right now; artists are dealing with so much these days, and we want not only for our students to benefit, but for everyone involved to benefit. The gala is now a chance for artists, especially young and emerging artists, to benefit directly by donating, and to be seen and get exposure for their work,” says Kratz.
“Now more than ever, we need to support each other, not only as artists but as a community.”
The auction is also an opportunity to view art in person once again and engage with New York's greater creative community, especially after a summer when museums and galleries were closed to the public. “I’m so glad to participate this year, to be surrounded again by art, artists and art lovers who support both art and artists during this uncertain time,” says Bahar Sabzevari, an Iranian artist and 2018 graduate of the Academy whose painting Sleepy Cat is included in the auction. “We all need each other. And most of us desperately want to connect, and not just via Instagram posts. I think the Artists for Artists exhibition and livestream is a chance to get the art community connected again.”
Maria Manero, a fellow Academy graduate and Mexican artist whose painting Selling Aguas is part of this year's auction, reiterates Sabzevari's sentiments:
“For me, participating in this year's exhibition is especially important," she says. "We are living in challenging times. Now, more than ever we need to support each other, not only as artists but as a community. I think we are learning to take care of our families, neighbors, friends and people around us in a new way. This is the right moment to do something for someone."
To learn more about the gala, visit the New York Academy of Art online.