The Washington Post is stirring the pot over Melissa Chiu’s New York gala to benefit the Hirshhorn in Washington, DC. The 40th Anniversary gala that takes place in less than a week has already brought in $1.55m for the Museum which the paper says is multiples of any previous gala:
“The way I see it is all programming is local. The money [from the gala] goes for yoga and Happy Hour at the Hirshhorn and After Hours and exhibitions, and all of that is for the audience here,” said Chiu, 43. “It made sense for us to go to New York, at a time when the contemporary art world is focused on New York; the auctions are going on at that time.”
“I have no regrets,” she added.
Tom Freudenheim, a former assistant secretary for museums at the Smithsonian, was among those who questioned the decision to celebrate an important milestone in New York.
“I’m skeptical about the message that in order to succeed in the world of modern and contemporary art, you have to function in New York,” he told The Washington Post in August.
As the Hirshhorn’s new director, Melissa Chiu is raising millions (The Washington Post)