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Aperture Celebrates 65 Years at the “Elements of Style” Gala
On October 30, Aperture Foundation honored a group of extraordinary image-makers.
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.
The 2017 Aperture Gala and Auction was generously supported by:
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*
Peter Barbur* and Tim Doody
Allan Chapin* and Anna Rachminov
Fine Art Frameworks
Annette Y. Friedland*
Elaine Goldman* and John Benis
Barbara M. Goodbody
Darius Himes, Christie’s
Ingram Content Group
Darlene Kaplan and Steve Zuckerman
Michèle Gerber Klein
Bonnie Englebardt Lautenberg
Susana Torruella Leval*
Marina and Andrew Lewin
Sarah Anne McNear*
Melissa* and James O’Shaughnessy
Sarah Gore Reeves*
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
John C. Williams
The Photo Party Committee
Richie Shazam Khan
Samuel P. Lawson
Additional support from:
Joe Baio and Anne Griffin
Amanda and Glenn Fuhrman
Aliya and Aren LeeKong
Jon Stryker and Slobodan Randjelović
Casey and Lauren Weyand
Paul G. Wolf’