BY JUDY CARMACK BROSS
Transforming the Art Institute’s McKinlock Court into a night in Tahiti for a sold-out crowd of 250 guests was the latest feat of magic by the Old Masters Society.
Celebrating the blockbuster Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist exhibition, the evening began with a presentation by the renowned exhibition curator and Chair of the European Painting and Sculpture Department, Gloria Groom, who provided insights into the artist and the intricacies of the acclaimed exhibition, which has drawn around-the-block crowds for the Art Institute. Old Masters Society members and their guests were invited by President Laura de Frise to view the exhibition and toast its success with a signature Tahitian tropical cocktail before dining al fresco.
Benefit Co-chairs, Virginia Bobins and Gary Metzner, painted their own South Seas effect with lush tropical centerpieces, floral tablecloths, and lighting mirroring stars on a balmy night. Guitarist Andy Brown set the musical sultry scene.
As Laura related:
“The entire night was incredibly memorable from the magical exhibition viewing to the majestic dinner in the garden of McKinlock Court. In my last year as president of the Old Masters Society, I felt lucky and privileged to be a part of this amazing and beautiful evening of celebration, and of the members who do so much to support our mission.
“Lynda Canel, our program chair, is fabulous and knows how best to connect the dots while still having fun. Virginia and Gary were so creative with their ideas, so open and available with their time, so enthusiastic with their energy, so generous with their benefit committee support, so in tune with every detail, and so determined to make the evening a success. They succeeded in every way with a sold-out evening and by raising substantial funds for future Old Masters projects.”
The Old Masters Society of the Art Institute of Chicago plays an important role in the museum’s community through contributions towards acquisitions, research, publications, exhibitions, and lectures that foster an understanding of the great art of the past and an appreciation of collecting.
Virginia Bobins summed it up perfectly:
“Gary and I were so thrilled to have an event during mid-summer that was so greatly attended. We were blessed to have a perfect evening under the stars!”
Photo credit: Jeff Ellis Photography