Hublot Supports Medair with First Annual Gala
On March 30 at Stephan Weiss Studio in New York, we gathered in the company of artists, curators, designers, and hardworking volunteers for a very important cause. Medair, the humanitarian organization dedicated to relieving human suffering in some of the world’s most remote and devastated places, was hosting a black-tie fundraiser. There, we learned more about the organization and its efforts. Recognized as a signatory of the International Committee of the Red Cross Code of Conduct, Medair believes that aid should be given to all of those in need—regardless of political, social, or religious viewpoints. Through the highest standards of quality, accountability, and sustainability, Medair provides health care, nutrition, safe water, sanitation, shelter, and infrastructure to those in emergency zones, while forming close connections with the communities.
Last year, with a steadfast commitment to action and empowerment, the organization aided more than 1.6 million people in at-need countries like South Sudan, Haiti, Lebanon, Myanmar, Nepal, and Syria. This year, the organization is continuing its efforts, and with the help of others, it is dedicated to raising more awareness. In support of these efforts, watchmaker Hublot assisted in hosting the organization’s first annual gala with a cocktail reception, seated dinner, and a live auction by and Sotheby’s and a silent auction by Paddle8. That evening, as we wandered throughout the rooms, we saw works by an array of street and contemporary artists like Flore, WhisBe, Logan Hicks, and more, that were auctioned off to benefit Medair. We also enjoyed a live musical performance by three-piece band Too Many Zooz.
The works were curated by photographer and filmmaker Luca Babini, in partnership with Sarah Sperling of Goldman Global Arts, Thomas Allen of Fillin Global, and Ben Lau of Just-a-Spectator. Also included in the sale an experience package by Ferrari auctioned off, and a stunning Hublot watch, too. The highest bid during the live auction went to the Hublot watch, and online, Flore’s painting Where Wild Things Grow. To learn more about the artists and the works they auctioned off, Whitewall spoke to a handful of them at the gala.
WHITEWALL: Tell us about your involvement tonight and the piece you brought to the auction.
FLORE: It was great to continue working with Hublot. The piece I brought to the event was entitled Where Wild Things Grow, and it was originally painted for the Hublot boutique I installed paintings in during this past Art Basel in Miami Beach. It was the only piece I saved and didn’t sell during the art fair. I thought it was the strongest piece. When Hublot asked me to be a part of the charity event to raise money for Medair, I chose this piece hoping it would raise a lot of money for the charity—and it did.
WHISBE: I’m always grateful to be asked to participate in a charity event. Art and creativity is my life and I’ve been fortunate to enough to find that passion. To not only have that, but to be able to share it to help others, is just a gift I’ll never be able to fully repay. Vandal Gummy is a piece with many layers to it and continues to evolve as time goes on. A large part of the piece is not just my own personal experience behind it, but more so the relationship the viewer develops. If I had to sum it up in two words, it would be “innocence lost.” The rest is up for you to interpret.
THRASHBIRD: The piece I created for the charity is entitled Refugees Welcome. The imagery I chose is meant to invoke a sense of desperate urgency, but also insight a tangible feeling of hope. The knee-jerk reaction as an artist making art about the refugee crisis the world is seeing right now is to use dire, heartbreaking imagery. I’ve seen a lot of that lately. I feel we need to see that. It makes it real. It offers no answer or incentive to find one—only that of a hopeless plight. I wanted to push the viewer to move to action if they felt so inclined.
SAC SIX: The piece is called Boys of Summer. It depicts four boys, from the Congo region, on a daily walk to get clean drinking water. Despite having to walk miles every day for clean water, I love the sense of hope and happiness these kids have. The birds represent that freedom and ability to overcome.
LOGAN HIX: The piece I did for the auction is part of my water series. Just as the city surrounds you as you walk through it, I saw similarities with water. It’s all encompassing. The piece that I painted is of a woman breeching the surface of the water with her head emerging while her body is still submerged.
HUEMAN: The title of the piece is Fantastic Voyeur. It’s a woman peeking from imaginary blinds, looking out beyond her bubble. I felt it was perfect for the Medair auction because it also holds meaning for us as human beings, and how we should look beyond our own bubbles and must decide whether or not to take action. When others are in need, do we act or do we watch from the sidelines? It was originally created for “XX”—an all female show that was held at the Saatchi Gallery in London last year.