Artist Wayne Thiebaud was honored last week by California College of the Arts at its annual gala, raising over $1.2 million for CCA student scholarships.
Over 350 supporters attended the event at the college’s Eighth Street campus in San Francisco, which Stanlee Gatti Designs transformed into a colorful tented space inspired by Thiebaud’s painting Two Paint Cans (1987).
Joining in the celebration of the legendary 98-year old artist, who received an honorary doctorate in 1972 from CCA (then known as California College of Arts and Crafts), were leaders of major San Francisco arts institutions, such as John and Gretchen Berggruen, Nion McEvoy, Jennifer Biederbeck, Gary Garrels, Kelly Purcell, Lawrence Rinder, Lauren Ryan and Charlie Spalding.
Notable designers, architects, and artists we spotted at the event included Sara Bird, Squeak Carnwath, Arthur Gensler Jr., George Jewett, Byron Kuth, Zack Lara, Stanley Saitowitz, Sandy Walker, Alyssa Warnock, and Sonya Yu.
Among the many cultural and society figures attending were Todd Berardi, Victoire Brown, Lorna Meyer Calas and Dennis Calas, Jim and Penny Coulter, vice president of user experience at Google Catherine Courage, John and Ellen Drew, Fred and Shelby Gans, Stanlee Gatti, Michael Krasny, Deedee McMurtry, Michele and Chris Meany, Eileen and Peter Michael, Amanda Michaels, Diana Nelson and John Atwater, Katie Paige, Alexandra Pelosi, Paul Pelosi, Alison Pincus, Cathy and Mike Podell, Leslie Podell, John Pritzker, Clint and Janet Reilly, Norah and Norman Stone, Kim Swig, Katie Traina, Kay Kimpton Walker and Sandy Walker, and Summer Walker.
The gala, helmed by co-chairs and CCA trustees Cathy Podell and Stanlee Gatti with honorary committee chair Lorna Meyer Calas, began with a lively cocktail reception, where guests enjoyed libations by Rye and musical entertainment by Eric Long while mingling amid an exhibition curated by CCA alumna Lisa Jonas Taylor (MFA Fine Arts 2014) that brought together work from current students and alumni influenced by Wayne Thiebaud.
Berlin Gabrielle Barrera, Eleni Berg, Rebekah Goldstein, Woody De Othello, and Leah Rosenberg were the artists whose works were presented.
Following dinner (catered by Paula LeDuc Fine Catering & Events), CCA President Stephen Beal kicked off the evening’s program by highlighting the college’s major initiatives and the bright future ahead for the college.
“We’re working with MacArthur Award–winning architect Jeanne Gang to design our new campus, which will be a living, learning laboratory for creative experimentation in the heart of San Francisco,” stated President Beal.
“This exciting future is possible thanks to the legacy of CCA faculty and alumni and by the world class, creative community in the Bay Area. Wayne Thiebaud is surely one of the most distinguished leaders of that community.”
Following keynote remarks by scholar Steven Nash, and some impromptu words by Thiebaud, a video tribute featuring an exclusive interview with KQED Forum host Michael Krasny covered Mr. Thiebaud’s approach to being a painter, philosophies on being an artist, the importance of teaching, and his contributions to art history.
In a surprise close to the evening, a never-before-seen page from Mr. Thiebaud’s sketchbook, showing nine pen-and-ink drawings of compositional studies for his iconic paintings, was auctioned for $42,000.
See more photos from the stellar evening below!