As an avant garde art presenter worthy of a reputation for broadening the dialogue between aesthetic genres, Musiqa had much to celebrate at its spring benefit at McClain Gallery. The five-member artistic board that has curated innovative concerts for 12 seasons, with the help of honorary chair Judy Nyquist, welcomed a throng of Houston's art cognoscenti to a space hued with spring-like floral drawings and mono-prints by Karin Broker that were part of the exhibition damn girls.
After grazing a bounty of hors d'oeuvres and desserts courtesy of Sorrel Urban Bistro, it was the suggestion of artistic director Anthony Brandt that guests venture into an intimate area in which the multimedia installation Trailer by Jeff Shore and John Fisher evinced the type of gutsy presentation that mirrored Musiqa's raison d'être. It's this type of bold and fearless approach to creativity that earned Musiqa the 2013 CMA/ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming.
To commemorate Musiqa's 10-year relationship with the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, CAMH director, Bill Arning, was honored for his vision and leadership, an acknowledgement that was echoed by City of Houston Office of Cultural Affairs representative Minnette Boesel when she officially proclaimed the occasion as Bill Arning Day.
A lively saxophone ensemble performance by Moores School of Music faculty member Dan Gelok, San Jacinto College professor Johnny Salinas and students Zach Woolhouse and Clinton Ross served as a curtain close while patrons concluded bidding at a silent auction.
Toasting to daring art making were Robert Austen Furse, Kevin and Trish Rigdon, Christina Hanson, Frances Taplett, Kelly Hamman, Nancy Mathé, Ashley Srouji, Mark McCray, Karol Bennett, Mary Lou Swift, Simon Phillips, Musiqa composer Marcus Maroney and Michael Muña, Alison Bieser, Pam Horton and Simon Phillips.