Art for AIDS Raises Record $$ for HIV & Mental Health Services

The UCSF Alliance Health Project’s 17th annual Art for AIDS auction drew over 800 art patrons and AHP supporters to raise a record $275,000 on Friday, October 25th at the City View. Spirited auction participants snapped up more than 150 works of modern and contemporary art during an evening of competitive bidding at both live and silent auctions.

art-for-aids-2013-crowdBidders waited patiently in lines that snaked through the outdoor terrace of the City View, snacking on small bites provided by volunteers. The event space buzzed with energy, and high bidders took home works from local and world-renowned artists such as Theophilus Brown, Squeak Carnwath, Michael Kenna, Hung Liu, Catherine Mackey and Kristine Mays. Bidding was particularly enthusiastic over several pieces in the live auction including the final lot of the evening, David Smith Harrison‘s Royal Palm with Turkish Design which sold for nearly double the retail at $2,900. Hung Liu’s haunting untitled portrait garnered the highest bid of the evening at $4,000. The silent auction favorites included Michael Beckler‘s In the Beginning which was snapped up for the “Buy it Now” price of $1,475 before the auction began. Works by Hap Leonard , Hadley Northop, David Ohlerking, and Silvia Poloto all required additional bid sheets to accommodate the flurry of silent auction bidding.

In addition to veteran auctioneer Patrick Walsh, two special guests entertained the audience: event MC and drag king Vegas Jake (aka AHP trainer Jen Shockey), and auctioneer and community activist Lenny Broberg, who encouraged direct donations to AHP’s mental health services during a festive round of “hero bidding.” This year’s “hero bidding” captured $12,300 in donations to the Alliance Health Project in less than 10 minutes.

The event was catered by gourmet food and drink establishments including Bisou, Big Bottom Market, Boon Eat and Drink, Garibaldis, Precita Park Cafe, Castle Rock Winery and Chambord. In addition to art, patrons took home a variety of gift certificates from celebrated restaurants such as Absinthe, Gary Danko, Jardiniere and Range, as well as Napa winery tours, spa treatments, design services and luxury getaways. Genetic testing kits from 23 and Me were also popular among bidders.

Director Lori Thoemmes said, “The spirit and energy of the event was intoxicating. I am so appreciative of the staff, volunteers, sponsors, artists, bidders and buyers who made this event so special.”