Art on the Avenue Frenzy

Houston' largest silent art auction draws big crowd over two nights at Avenue CDC fundraiser

Houston's largest silent art auction draws big crowd over two nights

Scott Merrell and Michele Sturtevant at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Scott Merrel, Michele Sturtevant. Photo by John Lewis
Avenue CDC Executive Director Mary Lawler (left) with Honorary Chair John E. Walsh (center) and Debbie McNulty, director of the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs
Avenue CDC director Mary Lawler, honorary chair John E. Walsh, and Debbie McNulty, director of the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs. Photo by John Lewis
Richard Hester (left) and Taylor Ragsdale (right) at Art on the Avenue preview party
Richard Hester, Taylor Ragsdale. Photo by John Lewis
Justin and Julianne Hickey at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Justin Hickey, Julianne Hickey. Photo by John Lewis
Derick Mitchell and Roslyn Bazzelle Mitchell with their son, Derick Mitchell, at the Art on the Avenue Auction Party
Derick Mitchell, Rosyln Bazzelle Mitchell and young Derick Mitchell. Photo by John Lews
Luis Santana and Jason Richburg of Lee’s Creamery prepare doughnut ice cream sandwiches for Preview Party guests at Art on the Avenue.
Luis Santana and Jason Richburg of Lee's Creamery dish out doughnut ice cream sandwiches. Photo by John Lewis
Art on the Avenue guests (pictured from left) Rocki and Doug Oehl, along with Cameron and Maddie Palmore.
Rocki Oehl, Doug Oehl, Cameron Palmore, Maddie Palmore. Photo by John Lewis
Steven Wagner and Sue Payne at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Steven Wagner, Sue Payne.  Photo by John Lewis
Javani King offered Art on the Avenue Preview Party guests a savory treat with pork and shrimp spring rolls with a Thai chili sauce
Javani King offers guests pork and shrimp spring rolls with a Thai chili sauce. Photo by John Lewis
Bobby Bishkin and Annette Santamaria joined hundreds of Houston art enthusiasts at the Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Bobby Bishkin, Annette Santamaria. Photo by John Lewis
Mary Lawler at Art on the Avenue preview party
Avenue CDC's Mary Lawler greets the crowd. Photo by John Lewis
Sixto Wagan (left) poses with Matthew Dirst (right) at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Sixto Wagan, Matthew Dirst. Photo by John Lewis
John Walsh at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
A large crowd turned out for the Art on the Avenue Preview Party. Photo by Cherri Carbonara
Scott Merrell and Michele Sturtevant at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Avenue CDC Executive Director Mary Lawler (left) with Honorary Chair John E. Walsh (center) and Debbie McNulty, director of the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs
Richard Hester (left) and Taylor Ragsdale (right) at Art on the Avenue preview party
Justin and Julianne Hickey at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Derick Mitchell and Roslyn Bazzelle Mitchell with their son, Derick Mitchell, at the Art on the Avenue Auction Party
Luis Santana and Jason Richburg of Lee’s Creamery prepare doughnut ice cream sandwiches for Preview Party guests at Art on the Avenue.
Art on the Avenue guests (pictured from left) Rocki and Doug Oehl, along with Cameron and Maddie Palmore.
Steven Wagner and Sue Payne at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Javani King offered Art on the Avenue Preview Party guests a savory treat with pork and shrimp spring rolls with a Thai chili sauce
Bobby Bishkin and Annette Santamaria joined hundreds of Houston art enthusiasts at the Art on the Avenue Preview Party
Mary Lawler at Art on the Avenue preview party
Sixto Wagan (left) poses with Matthew Dirst (right) at Art on the Avenue Preview Party
John Walsh at Art on the Avenue Preview Party

Houston's largest silent charity art auction, Art on the Avenue, drew an eclectic crowd of over 900 art lovers and community supporters to Winter Street Studios over the weekend for two nights of celebrating and bidding on over 300 works of art and jewelry, all created by local artists.

Hosted by non-profit Avenue CDC, the annual art bash — a Houston tradition for 20 years — raised more than $200,000 to benefit local artists and Avenue’s affordable housing and community building initiatives.

The Thursday night Preview Party, hosted by Houston artists Jane Eifler and Caroline Graham, also featured the artistry of local chefs with "curated bites" from Javani King, Culinaire, Eculent, Glass Wall, Tout Suite, Lee's Creamery and Araya Artisan Chocolate for the VIP crowd.

Honorary chair John Walsh heaped praise on Avenue CDC for 25 years of transforming neighborhoods and applauded executive director Mary Lawler for her leadership. Artist Patrick Renner, with help from students at Yes Prep, created an original art installation, titled “Avenue Twist," honoring Avenue CDC’s 25th anniversary.

Guest juror Jennie Ash of Art League Houston announced the show winners. A photograph by Brian Ellison captured first place while a mixed media piece by Page Piland took second place.

The crush of art admirers at the preview party included Dana and Neil Kelly,  John Hammond, Sue Payne, Steven Wagner, Trish and Rock Morille, Debbie McNulty and Dean Ruck, Elizabeth and Jack Weingarten, Ellie Sweeney, Derrick Mitchell and Roslyn Bazzelle Mitchell, Gary Wolfe, Kathryn and Richard Rabinow, Kathy and Ted Zwieg, Sixto Wagan and Matthew Dirst,  and Annette Santamaria and Bobby Bishkin.

On Saturday night, the auction and party weekend concluded with music from Texas Johnny Boy and another large crowd of art lovers who furiously bid on the wide array of paintings, sculptures and jewelry on display.

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