Aperture Magazine

The magazine of photography and ideas

Aperture Celebrates 65 Years at the “Elements of Style” Gala

On October 30, Aperture Foundation honored a group of extraordinary image-makers.

 - November 2, 2017

On October 30, Aperture honored a group of extraordinary image-makers—Zackary Drucker, Kwame Brathwaite, and Inez & Vinoodh—who are influencing how we look, how we dress, and how we can imagine, and reimagine, ourselves. Aperture’s “Elements of Style” Gala, which took place in the Frank Gehry–designed IAC building, attracted stars of art, film, and fashion, including Edward Enninful, Uma Thurman, Naomi Campbell, Judith Light, Iman, Hari Nef, Gigi Hadid, Sofia Sanchez de Betak, Dawoud Bey, Zanele Muholi, Chloe Wise, and Jimmy Moffat. Throughout the evening, a presentation of images played on a city block–length screen. Musical entertainers included Mx Justin Vivian Bond, St. Beauty, and Anohni.

Together with more than 450 guests, Aperture celebrated its sixty-fifth anniversary of serving the art, story, and community of photography “not by looking backward to its past glories,” in the words of British Vogue’s editor-in-chief Edward Enniful, “but by celebrating photography’s role in shaping our futures. It’s a time to express ourselves in a way that reflects ourselves, our stories, our communities, to our fullest potential; to be the truest version of ourselves that we can be.” The event was cohosted by Enniful; philanthropists Susan Gutfreund, Judy Glickman Lauder, and Elizabeth Ann Kahane; Aperture’s Board Chair Cathy M. Kaplan; actress and model Hari Nef; and activist and model Anja Rubik.

“For real and lasting change, we need allies from across the cultural landscape, allies who recognize the importance of ceding control of trans narratives back to the trans people who live them. Aperture is such an ally,” said Zackary Drucker, artist, trans activist, and producer of Amazon’s Emmy-winning series Transparent. Drucker is the guest editor of Aperture’s forthcoming winter 2017 issue, “Future Gender,” which considers the power of photography to shape trans lives around the world. “I’m in awe of the work we can do together.”

Inez & Vinoodh, some of the most celebrated and influential photographers working in fashion and art today, then premiered a striking video of their fashion images, set to a previously unreleased recording by Anohni. “At the root of our work lies the wish to visualize all the options of expression that a human face and body have, and to construct a heroic image of those in front of our lens,” said Inez van Lamsweerde.

The final guest to be honored, Kwame Brathwaite, advanced the idea “Black Is Beautiful” in the 1960s through his fashion photography and social activism. As author and scholar Tanisha C. Ford noted in her tribute to the Harlem photographer, “Brathwaite’s images envisioned what black beauty might look like for those who lived in the 1960s, and they continue to do so for a generation today.”

Over the preceding Gala Weekend, the festivities kicked off with a tour of The Richard Avedon Foundation, followed by studio visits with Daniel Gordon and Alison Rossiter, as well as tours of collectors’ homes, Staley-Wise Gallery, and The Glass House.

On the evening of the Gala, during a dining experience designed by Angela Dimayuga, Sara Friedlander of Christie’s presided over a live auction, which featured works by Diane Arbus, Horst P. Horst, Inez & Vinoodh, Saul Leiter, Sally Mann, Joel Meyerowitz, Richard Misrach, Sebastião Salgado, Stephen Shore, Pete Souza, and Paul Strand. Also at the venue, to mark Aperture’s sixty-fifth anniversary, the Magnum Square Print Sale in partnership with Aperture featured forty-eight museum-quality 6-by-6-inch prints for sale for $100 each, by Bruce Davidson, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Todd Hido, Mary Ellen Mark, Susan Meiselas, Alec Soth, Hank Willis Thomas, Penelope Umbrico, Alex Webb, and many others. The prints are available for sale online through Friday, November 3, 2017, 6:00 p.m. EST.

Read more about the Aperture Gala on VOGUE.

Aperture’s endeavors are only possible with the help of Gala patrons and Aperture Members. Click here to donate to Aperture’s Annual Fund or join our community as an Aperture Member.

The 2017 Aperture Gala and Auction was generously supported by:

Ingram, Christie’s, Foto Care, Artsy, Emily Thompson Flowers, Fine Art Frameworks, Hypno, photograph magazine, Patrick McMullan Company, Stella Artois, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, and Ziobaffa.

Gala Committees 

Sb Cooper* and R. L. Besson
Elizabeth* and William Kahane
Cathy M. Kaplan* and Renwick D. Martin
Leonard and Judy Lauder
Anne Stark Locher* and Kurt Locher
Jessica Nagle* and Roland Hartley-Urquhart
Thomas R. Schiff*

Gala Committee
Malú Alvarez
Rita Anthoine
Peter Barbur* and Tim Doody
Dawoud Bey*
Allan Chapin* and Anna Rachminov
Andrew Craven
Fine Art Frameworks
Foto-Care Ltd.
Annette Y. Friedland*
Elaine Goldman* and John Benis
Barbara M. Goodbody
Great Bowery
Howard Greenberg
Susan Gutfreund
Darius Himes, Christie’s
Michael Hoeh*
Ingram Content Group
Darlene Kaplan and Steve Zuckerman
Hemant Kanakia
Michèle Gerber Klein
Bonnie Englebardt Lautenberg
Raymond Learsy
Susana Torruella Leval*
Marina and Andrew Lewin
Nion McEvoy*
Patrick McMullan
Sarah Anne McNear*
Joel Meyerowitz*
Helen Nitkin*
Catherine Opie
Melissa* and James O’Shaughnessy
Louise Parker
Lori Perlow
Sarah Gore Reeves*
Leslie Simitch
David Solo*
Etheleen Staley and Taki Wise
Severn Taylor* and J. Scott Switzer
Willard Taylor* and Virginia Davies
Mickalene Thomas and Racquel Chevremont
Barbara and Donald Tober
VLM Productions
V+S Company
John C. Williams
Whit Williams
*Aperture trustee

The Photo Party Committee
Joshua Citarella
Dianna Cohen
Awol Erizku
Matthew Foley
Liz Grover
Alexander Hurst
Richie Shazam Khan
Samuel P. Lawson
Joshua Lewin
Sarah Meyohas
Antwaun Sargent
Rory Satran
Catherine Smith
Chloe Wise
Esther Zuckerman

Additional support from:
Ann Ames
Joe Baio and Anne Griffin
Amanda and Glenn Fuhrman
Sylvia Hemingway
Philippe Laumont
Aliya and Aren LeeKong
David Moscow
Yancey Richardson
Salon 94
Jon Stryker and Slobodan Randjelović
Casey and Lauren Weyand
Paul G. Wolf’