Arts / Galleries

Houston Photography’s Most Important Night of the Year Puts Stunning Works Up for Bid

Center for Photography's 39th Print Auction and Dinner is a High-Stakes Celebration

BY // 02.12.20

From its founding in 1981, Houston Center for Photography’s annual Print Auction has been the nonprofit’s most important date on the calendar, the apex of its annual fundraising efforts.

The 2020 39th Annual Print Auction and Dinner promises to deliver the same high-level stakes in a celebration of fine photography, philanthropy and good old-fashioned gamesmanship.

Chaired by Brooke and Adam Beebe, Nena and David Marsh, and Meg and Nelson Murray, 2020 marks the second year Houston Center for Photography teamed up with Artsy to show off its works before the big show gets underway, and to allow for a special round of silent auction bidding before the auction and dinner takes place Thursday, February 13, at 6 pm at The Briar Club.

In a unique and special move, the night will honor the family of Carol Crow, in loving acknowledgment of 20 years of the Carol Crow Fellowship Award.

The prestigious prize is given every year to two photographic, film, video and lens-based artists (one of the artists must be based in Houston, the other award is available to any applicable artist anywhere) handpicked by an expert writer, curator, or critic in the field as chosen by HCP. The winners receive a $3,000 award, a solo show at HCP’s HQ near Montrose, and a spread in its acclaimed spot magazine.

Sarah Krueger, head of the photographs department at the rarefied Phillips auction firm, will hold court Thursday night as auctioneer.

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Houston Center for Photography’s educational footprint serves 4,000-plus children each year. More than 26,000 people engage with HCP, between its Museum District galleries, educational programs and fellowships. And the impressive overall outreach of HCP touches more than 250,000 people through schools, hospitals and other public spaces throughout the Houston area.

The nonprofit stages around 12 exhibitions annually and admission is always free.

In its second year partnership with Artsy, bidding is the easiest it’s ever been. Click here to start bidding on silent auction lots, including works by Geoff Winningham, Bill Finger and Mary Margaret Hansen. Bidding closes the night of the auction, this Thursday, February 13, at 9:30 pm local time.

Pre-registering and advance bidding on the top lots reserved for the live auction – including pieces by Duane Michals, Clarence White, Berenice Abbott and many more – can be done here. Place bids before the auction closes Thursday night at 7:30 pm local time. (Indeed, some advance bidding is well underway as we draw closer to the big night.)

No need to fear a steep entrance into the world of collecting. As always, patrons of all stripes are encouraged to bid, with lots as low as $150.

Scroll through some of the Center’s stunning photographs in the gallery below:

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