The MacDowell National Benefit
The MacDowell National Benefit returned for an in-person celebration in New York City!
More than 300 people joined us at the Ziegfeld Ballroom in New York City on October 17 for a festive celebration of MacDowell Fellows' work and the presentation of the third annual Marian MacDowell Arts Advocacy Award to Anonymous Was A Woman (AWAW) and its visionary founder, Susan Unterberg. At a time when MacDowell and others are working diligently to remove barriers to artistic creativity for the widest population, we proudly salute AWAW's leadership in providing support, since 1996, to mid-career women-identifying artists.
This spectacular evening showcased the outstanding work of MacDowell Fellows across artistic disciplines. Hosted by MacDowell Fellow and award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson (4x, 90-09), the Benefit also featured performances and works by poet and drag artist Wo Chan (20), performing as The Illustrious Pearl, a silk installation by visual artist Portia Munson (92, 98, 19), music performed by musician Conrad Tao from 2021 Pulitzer Prize winner and 2022 Kennedy Center honoree Tania León (16), a performance from Carmen Ruby-Floyd and Judy Kuhn of a musical adaptation of The Skin of Our Teeth by Ethan Lipton (18), and 2021 MacDowell Medalist Rosanne Cash, who presented this year's award and closed the evening with a special performance of her song "Particle and Wave."
This year's Benefit auction featured curated getaways, creative experiences with MacDowell Fellows, and artworks large and small for any collection, from MacDowell Fellows Cindy Bernard (16), Nene Humphrey (78, 08, 11), Rosemarie Fiore (03, 14), Nina Katchadourian (95), and many others!
Check out our slideshow of the evening below as well as a video chronicle of the evening.
For more information about the Benefit or to become a sponsor of next year's event, please e-mail email@example.com
Marian MacDowell Arts Advocacy Award
This year, we presented the third annual Marian MacDowell Arts Advocacy Award to Anonymous Was A Woman, an organization founded by visual artist and MacDowell Fellow Susan Unterberg which provides unrestricted grants to women-identifying artists over the age of 40.
The list of individuals supported by both Anonymous Was A Woman and MacDowell is long, and includes Torkwase Dyson, Nina Katchadourian, Autumn Knight, Zoe Leonard, Howardena Pindell, Laura Poitras, Cecilia Vicuña, Carrie Mae Weems, and many more groundbreaking artists. A selection of works created by artists who have received the support of both MacDowell and Anonymous Was A Woman will be on display during MacDowell’s benefit evening
The Marian MacDowell Arts Advocacy Award was created to honor those who profoundly and uniquely support artists, aligning with our founder Marian MacDowell’s legacy and her championship of artists as they create bold new works that spark our imagination, illuminate our world, and celebrate our humanity.
In 2020, the inaugural award was presented to Ava DuVernay and ARRAY, a multi-platform media company and arts collective based in Los Angeles that amplifies independent films by Black artists, people of color, and women filmmakers globally. In 2021, the award was presented to Mahogany L. Browne and Urban Word NYC, one of the oldest and most comprehensive youth literary arts organizations in the country. This year’s award is presented with generous support by Musa and Tom Mayer.
Benefit Committee Co-Chairs
Anne Stark Locher
Amy Davidson Sorkin
Susan Bay Nimoy
Katie Firth and Jonathan Bank
Christine and Todd Fisher
Jeanne Donovan Fisher
Elizabeth and Russell Gaudreau
Darrell and Robin Harvey
Anne Stark Locher and Kurt Locher
Robert and Stephanie Olmsted
Thomas and Babs Putnam
Andrew and Barbara Senchak
Amy Davidson Sorkin and David Sorkin
Peter and Catherine Wirth
* all lists in formation
Erin M. Riley