Together with honorary chairs Anne Stringfield and Steve Martin, I am excited to celebrate renowned American artist Jenny Holzer on Tuesday, June 9th, 2015 at the Poetry Society of America's Spring Benefit. The evening at the New York Botanical Garden includes cocktails and a private viewing of FRIDA KAHLO: Art, Garden, Life, followed by dinner and a celebration of Jenny Holzer's work.
I write with the hope that you will join me in serving on the Benefit Committee with fellow co-chairs Maxim Thorne, Wendy Williams, Catherine Woodard and our stellar roster of benefactors led by Laura Baudo Sillerman and Cheim & Read, Jenny Holzer's gallery. At the highest levels, a poet guest such as former Poet Laureate Billy Collins, Pulitzer Prize winners Sharon Olds and Yusef Komunyakaa, and National Book Critics Circle winner Marie Ponsot will join the table.
For more than 35 years, Jenny Holzer has presented her profound art in public places to international acclaim. Writing in a public dimension has been integral to the delivery of her work beginning in the 1970s with her New York City posters and continuing through her recent light projections on landscape and architecture. The PSA has chosen to honor Jenny Holzer for holding poetry aloft as a central component of her art for many years, featuring the work of Walt Whitman, Wislawa Szymborska, Czeslaw Milosz, Yehuda Amichai, Henri Cole, and others, and emblemizing the power of poetry more than any other contemporary artist.
FRIDA KAHLO: Art, Garden, Life will be the first solo presentation of Kahlo's work in New York City in more than 10 years, and the first to focus exclusively on her intense interest in the botanical world. The Haupt Conservatory will evoke the iconic artist's famed garden and studio at Casa Azul, her lifelong home in Mexico City. A rare display of more than a dozen original Kahlo paintings and works on paper, many borrowed from private collections, will be in the Mertz Library Art Gallery.
On Tuesday, June 9th, 2015, PSA guests are invited to a private tour of Kahlo's art and manuscripts in the Mertz Gallery from 6-6:30 pm. A short walk away, cocktails will be served from 6:30-7:15 pm in the Conservatory where Kahlo's garden and studio are reimagined. Dinner and a tribute to Jenny Holzer follow at 7:30 pm in the Garden's beautiful Terrace Room.
Please visit the Poetry Society website noting the range of options for participating as a Benefit Committee member. Please respond by April 13th so that we can add your name to the Benefit Committee on the invitation, as well as the June 9th program. We promise to honor your participation by creating a very special evening.
* * *
Image Credit: Site: Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York September 22–December 31, 2008. Text: "Parting with a View" from View with a Grain of Sand by Wisława Szymborska, copyright © 1993 by the author. English translation by Stanisław Barańczak and Clare Cavanagh, copyright © 1995 by Harcourt, Inc. Used/reprinted with permission of the author. Projection: FX Productions; Charles Passarelli; Laurent Benetiere; Gilles Gingras. Photo: Lili Holzer-Glier. Photo © The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.