Over 300 of the hippest most dedicated art supporters and collectors came to support and celebrate The Art of Elysium organization founded in 1997 to support medically disabled and hospitalized children. Art of Elysium has grown into a fully realized program with the charity providing an outlet for working artists, actors and musicians to volunteer their creative talents helping children with serious illnesses.
Last night's Pieces of Heaven event featured a silent auction, plus about 16 key pieces auctioned off by Andrea Fiuczynski, president, Christies Los Angeles. Those pieces -- including works by David Arquette and Scott Caan -- brought in winning bids of from $1,200 to $10,000 (for an Andy Warhol polaroid of Dolly Parton).
While avid art patrons grazed on polenta cakes and lobster in butter sauce served on individual spoons, there was a sense of community in this room with many of the attendees and artists alike all returning year after year. Many of the artists interviewed spoke of the profound affect working with the hospitalized children had on them, their own spirits and ultimately their art.
Actress Sophia Bush, wearing a midnight blue Kathyrn Kidd sequined floor length formal gown, was a returning patron looking to enhance her burgeoning art collection. "I just bought a beautiful Peter Tunney piece in NY a few months ago," she said at the event, held at Hollywood's Smashbox Studios.
Topher Grace, also a devoted member of Art of Elysium, hopes to start his own art collection "in two years." Asked what's next on his calendar he said, "I'm doing a play in New York, Paul Weitz's new play called Lonely I'm Not. I've never done a play so I'm freaked out … and Olivia Thirlby is also in the play with me. I love Paul. I was in In Good Company so it's like family for me."
Featured artist James Georgopoulos' photographic piece from his gun series sold for $6,500. The work is a tribute to the actual gun used in Scarface. “I just wanted to answer some of the street artists by showing that studio artists have an edge to their work as well," he said.