Aspen ArtCrush Brings Disco to the Rocky Mountains

Amnon Rodan and Nairy Baghramian at Aspen ArtCrush 2023.

Buttermilk Mountain made for a picturesque background on Friday for Aspen Art Museum’s ArtCrush gala. Co-chairs Jaime Tisch and Sara Zilkha welcomed attendees to the highly anticipated event nestled in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. The annual auction rasied $3.8 million, with a record-setting $1.8 millinon coming from online bidding. 

As guests entered the venue, they were met with a playful theme of “Disco in the Woods.” The disco ball-lined ceiling sent light flying over a room filled with sequined dresses and vintage prints. Larger-than-life mushrooms and florals sprouted from the floors in a one-of-a-kind installation. The event was presented by Sotheby’s and Prada, with additional support from Steven Shane of Compass Real Estate, JP Morgan Private Bank, UOVO, Tata Harper, and CULTURED

After a round of cocktails, dinner was served to guests including Christine Heller, Sophia Cohen, Alex Israel, Matt Copson, Nicola Lees, Komal Shah, Nikolai Haas, Chase HallHans Ulrich Obrist, and more. As soon as forks were set down, the main event of the evening commenced: the live auction. 

Bids featured works by renowned artists such as Charles Gaines, Peter Halley, Carmen Herrera, Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe, Lily Stockman, Spencer Lewis, Liza Lou, the Haas Brothers, and Howardena Pindell. The curated pieces up for auction consisted of varying mediums, such as painting, ceramics, sculpture, and works on paper, ranging from under $5,000 to over $500,000. 

The night’s honoree, Nairy Baghramian, received the 2023 Aspen Award for Art. The Iranian-German abstract artist, whose solo exhibition Jupon de Corps is up at the Aspen Art Museum until Oct. 22, is known for exploring the opposing yet codependent forces of her eclectic materials. The aluminum and wax sculpture featured in the gala auction, Coude à Coude, 2019, is no exception.

The ArtCrush Gala served as the culmination of another exciting Aspen ArtWeek, which, in addition to annually drawing crowds to the mountain town, honors contemporary artists and their impact on the field. 

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