Art on the Avenue supporters back Houston artists and affordable housing by buying local
What: 21st annual Art on the Avenue.
Where: Winter Street Studios.
The scoop: Art lovers came out on two nights for the annual sale that benefits Avenue CDC, the nonprofit whose mission is to build affordable homes and strengthen communities. Nearly 500 paintings and sculptures from 263 artists, including 40 student artists, were available to the highest bidder in a silent auction via cell phone texts. A lively preview party hosted by mother-daughter duo Ellie Sweeney and Jessica Pierce featured light bites from BCK Kitchen & Cocktail Adventures, FM Kitchen & Bar, Jenni’s Noodle House, Poptails, Fat Cat Creamery, Fusion Taco, and Javani King, as well as entertainment by Moodafaruka.
In between bidding for art, guests at the auction party two nights later enjoyed a full Mexican buffet from El Patio and danced to the tunes of Texas Johnny Boy. More than $220,000 was raised over the two night-event, with $38,000 given back to Houston artists. A raffle of an original color lithograph of Pablo Picasso's "Toros y Toreros" added to the total.
Paul R. Davis, curator of collections at The Menil Collection, served as guest juror, selecting Roy Hanscom's "7 Lidded Form" as first-place winner, with David Graeve's "Healthcare Alchmy Lester #13 as runner-up. Honorable mentions went to Eric Hagen and Judith Meyer.
Who: Seen in the crowd were John Cryer III, Edna Ramos, Scott Wise and Geraldina Interiano Wise, Miya Shay, Anne Neeson, Ward and Susan Pennebaker, Jamie and Kacey Bryant,Jessica and Jarrett Pierce, Meg and Guy Oliphint, Gracie Cavnar, Sue Payne and Steven Wagner, John Kelley and Jano Nixon Kelley, Christine and Michael Holland, Sixto Wagan and Matthew Dirst, George Lancaster, Jack Sweeney, Ric Campo, Lauren Fisher, Annette Santamaria, and Avenue CDC executive director Mary Lawler.