This year the ICI Annual Benefit and Auction was held at Cipriani. The event honored Dimitris Daskalopoulos who received the 2014 Leo Award. He is the founder of the D. Daskalopoulos Collection and NEON which is a curatorial program that creates an exchange for curatorial practice between London (Whitechapel Gallery) and Greece. A silent auction featured donated artworks from Marina Abramovic, Derrick Adams, Adam Marnie, Hanna Liden and many others. Co-chairs for this years event were Bridget Finn, Belinda Kielland, Noreen Ahmad, and Ann Cook. A multitude of tables, accommodating 300 guests, were arranged perpendicular to the stage, under the cavernous, decorative ceiling of Cipriani for a seated dinner. Artworks were also being sold during a live auction and was led by an auctioneer from Sotheby’s. Noted works available during the live auction included “Three Government Personnel [One Blond] Considering and/or Deciding, 2008 by John Baldessari, the possibility to have a personally commissioned photographic portrait by Andres Serrano, and a concrete piece titled “TBT”, 2014, by Oscar Tuazon.
Agnes Gund presented the Leo Award (named for the late galleriet Leo Castelli) stating, “With the Leo Award, ICI recognizes outstanding achievements in advancing the field of contemporary art. In recent years, Mr. Daskalopoulos created remarkably supportive environments for contemporary artists and curators through the D.Daskalopoulos Collection and NEON. Both entities promote the dissemination of contemporary art to broad audiences, treating the collection as an open resource, conceiving the organization as a vessel for exhibitions and education, and connecting artists, curators and audiences from across the globe. This echoes ICI’s core mission in so many ways.”
Also honored at the event was Eva Barois De Caevel, with the 2014 Idependent Vision Curatorial Award which was presented to her by Nancy Spector, Deputy Director and Jennifer and David Stockman Chief Curator of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Barois De Caevel is based between Paris and Dakar and was selected from a group of 15 emerging curators. She is currently the Assistant Curator of RAW Center for Art, Knowledge, and Society in Dakar, Senegal and recently curated Avant-Garden, as part of FIAC (2014). The evening came to a close with a dance performance by the Stephen Petronio Company and all of the money raised from ticket sales and auctioned works will benefit Independent Curators International [ICI] which was founded in 1975 and is an integral organization working with curators both on a national and international level in fostering exhibitions, training, research fellowships and publications.