Aspen’s ArtCrush Draws Prominent Texans, Gulfstream Jet Setters and Billionaire Love
An Arty Mountain HighBY Shelby Hodge // 08.09.22
Sarah Smith, Reggie & Leigh Smithy, Sam Smith at the Aspen ArtCrush gala. (Instagram photo)
Carpenter's Workshop Gallery senior sales associate Isabel Suarez, Aspen Art Museum board member Barbara Gamson of Houston at the kick-off dinner for Aspen ArtCrush
Texas Cultural Trust board member Ellen Susman, host Jorge Pérez at the kick-off dinner for Aspen ArtCrush
Domenico De Sole, chairman of Tom Ford International, and Houston's Michael Gamson at the kick-off dinner for Aspen ArtCrush
Lehmann Maupin partner Carla Camacho, Dominic Chambers, David Maupin, Alva Stux at the Lehmann Maupin kick-off dinner for Aspen ArtCrush
For many Aspen devotees, the music festival is the pièce-de-résitance of summer happenings. For others the the Food & Wine Classic reigns supreme. But for a certain cognoscenti, it’s ArtCrush that matters most.
Rounds of related parties, pop-up galleries from across the country including Houston’s Nancy Littlejohn Fine Art, and the big gala auction itself, benefiting the Aspen Art Museum, fill the early August calendar with even more reason to pull out the designer frocks, which were once upon a time so foreign to the Aspen summer scene.
Gallery hopping, hobnobbing and fundraising was focus for the notable clutch of art world figures, aficionados and collectors some of whom jetted in on their Gulfstreams, others of whom opened the doors of their art-filled summer homes for rarified schmoozing.
One of those launch events took place in the mountain aerie of Argentine-American billionaire and mega collectors Jorge Perez and his wife, Darlene, in partnership with New York’s Lehmann Maupin gallery. The private dinner honored artist Dominic Chambers, represented by the gallery and whose work was included in the ArtCrush art auction. In a brief program, Lehmann Mapuin partner Carla Camacho held an enlightening discussion with Chambers on his work.
Guests attending intimate soirée included Houstonians Barbara Gamson, an Aspen Art Museum board member, and her husband Michael Gamson, a minority owner in the Houston Astros, and Texas Cultural Trust board member and president of the Susman Foundation Ellen Susman.
Also attending were Tom Ford International chairman Dominico De Sole, Lehmann Maupin co-founder David Maupin, art collectors Rita and Jeff Adler, and others.
New York-based designer Sterling McDavid hosted a kickoff luncheon in her spectacular art-drenched home earlier that day in partnership with the Aspen Art Museum, Cultured founder and editor-in-chief Sarah Harrelson and Kavi Gupta Gallery.
The ArtCrush gala and auction hosted by Sotheby’s featured 50 works valued from under $5,000 to more than $200,000 and included painting, sculpture, ceramics, fabric work, work on paper and design art. The big event was chaired by Chandra Johnson, Jamie Tisch and Sara Zilkha. It ended up raising more than $4.3 million for the museum and its programs.
Texans spotted in the ArtCrush crowd included Nancy Rogers, Leigh and Reggie Smith and their children Sarah and Sam, and the Gamsons.
ArtCrush committee members from Texas included Nancy and Richard Rogers, Denise Monteleone and Jim Martin, Mona Look-Mazza and Tony Mazza, Nancy and Clint Carlson, and the Smiths and Gamsons.