THE MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, LOS ANGELES (MOCA), ANNOUNCES
MOCA GALA TO BE HELD SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2011
FEATURING ARTISTIC DIRECTION
BY CELEBRATED ARTIST MARINA ABRAMOVIĆ
Los Angeles—The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA), announced today that
its highly anticipated annual gala will be held Saturday, November 12, 2011, at MOCA Grand
Avenue. Legendary performance artist Marina Abramović will serve as the evening’s artistic
director, choreographing an unforgettable, participatory evening of performance and music,
including an appearance by a special guest musician. For the third year, gala leadership
includes MOCA Board Co-Chair Maria Arena Bell and MOCA Founding Chairman and Life
Trustee Eli Broad as gala chairs, and Larry Gagosian and Dasha Zhukova as honorary chairs.
The honorary co-chairs supporting this year’s gala comprise notable international and Los
Angeles–based art patrons and artists, including Wallis Annenberg, John Baldessari, Nicolas
Berggruen, Irving and Jackie Blum, Tim Blum, Irma and Norman Braman, Michael and Eva
Chow, Rosette Delug, Stefan Edlis and Gael Neeson, Mandy and Cliff Einstein, Honor Fraser
and Stavros Merjos, Gil and Janet Friesen, Berta and Frank Gehry, NancyJane and Mark
Goldston, Laurence Graff, Mark Grotjahn and Jennifer Guidi, Audrey Irmas, The Suzanne
Nora Johnson and David G. Johnson Foundation, Lilly Tartikoff Karatz and Bruce Karatz,
Maggie Kayne, Lauren and Richard King, Jeff and Justine Koons, Bettina Korek, Barbara
Kruger, Bernadette and Timothy J. Leiweke, Maurice Marciano, Nancy and Howard Marks,
Peter Morton, Eileen Harris Norton, Catherine Opie and Julie Burleigh, Laura Owens, Diana
Picasso, Jeff Poe, Carolyn and Bill Powers, Dallas Price-Van Breda and Bob Van-Breda,
Charles Ray, Shaun Caley Regen, Steven Roth and Kaayla Cevan, Ed and Danna Ruscha,
Carla and Fred Sands, Ronnie and Vidal Sassoon, Catharine and Jeffrey Soros, and Joel
“Marina Abramović is the most significant performance artist working today,” said MOCA
Director Jeffrey Deitch. “We are very excited that Marina will be the artistic director of
MOCA’s 2011 gala.“
In less than two years MOCA has tripled the value of its endowment, doubled its attendance,
and boosted its board membership with 21 new and returning trustees. In the same period of
time, the museum has established itself as a leader in creating a new kind of gala—introduced
in 2007 by a collaboration between Takashi Murakami and Kanye West at the © MURAKAMI
gala—as a single-evening, experiential artwork conceived by some of the most outstanding
visual artists working today. In 2009, 1,000 guests attended the MOCA New Gala, a
performance conceived by artist Francesco Vezzoli, starring Lady Gaga, and dancers from
the Bolshoi Ballet. Following the performance, a Steinway & Sons piano customized in pink
and blue butterfly motifs by celebrated artist Damien Hirst, which Lady Gaga played during
the world premiere of her song Speechless, was auctioned live, fetching $450,000 in support
of MOCA. Last year’s gala, The Artist’s Museum Happening, presented a special
collaboration with artist Doug Aitken, who envisioned an evening-long experience featuring
live performances by musicians Devendra Banhart, Beck, and Caetano Veloso. A highlight of
the evening, directed by Aitken, included the emergence of six rural farm auctioneers and
one cattle-whip performer along with the Los Angeles Gospel Choir. The Gala drew more
than 900 notable international guests and raised more than $3.2 million.
MOCA’s past galas have attracted illustrious international guests from the worlds of art,
fashion, music, and Hollywood, including Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Jeff Koons, Miuccia
Prada, Dasha Zhukova, Gwen Stefani, Hedi Slimane, James Franco, Frank Gehry, Mila Kunis,
John Baldessari, Mark Bradford, Chris Burden, Mike Kelley, Barbara Kruger, David Hockney,
Takashi Murakami, Kirsten Dunst, Ginnifer Goodwin, Anthony Kiedis, Chloë Sevigny, Will
Ferrell, Gore Vidal, Vera Wang, Catherine Opie, Ed Ruscha, and Pae White.
MOCA Gala 2011 tickets will range from $2,500 to $10,000 for individual tickets.
Table prices range from $25,000 to $100,000. Inquiries and requests can be
directed to 213/633-5348 or email@example.com.
This year, MOCA’s gala guests will also have the opportunity to preview the exhibition Naked
Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles, which will open to the public on November 13, 2011.
Curated by art historian Richard Meyer, this will be the first museum survey devoted to the
body of work that the tabloid photographer known as Weegee produced in Southern
California. In addition to roughly 200 photographs, most of which have never before been
shown or known, the exhibition encompasses Weegee’s related work as an author,
filmmaker, and photo-essayist. Naked Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles is presented in
conjunction with Pacific Standard Time, a collaboration of more than 60 cultural institutions
across Southern California coming together for the first time to celebrate the birth of the L.A.
ABOUT MARINA ABRAMOVIĆ
Marina Abramović was born in 1946 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia. Since the beginning of her
career, during the early 1970s where she attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade,
Abramović has pioneered the use of performance as a visual art form. The body has been
both her subject and medium. Exploring the physical and mental limits of her being, she has
withstood pain, exhaustion, and danger in the quest for emotional and spiritual
transformation. As a vital member of the generation of pioneering performance artists that
includes Bruce Nauman, Vito Acconci and Chris Burden, Abramović created some of the
most historic early performance pieces and continues to make important durational works.
Abramović has presented her work with performances, sound, photography, video, sculpture
and Transitory Objects for Human and Non Human Use in solo exhibitions at major institutions
in the U.S. and Europe. Her work has also been included in many large-scale international
exhibitions including the Venice Biennale (1976 and 1997) and Documenta VI, VII and IX,
Kassel, Germany (1977, 1982 and 1992). In 1998, three of Abramović ‘s major works, Rhythm
O (1979) and Relation in Movement (1997) and Rest Energy (1980) (by Abramović and Ulay)
were featured in MOCA’s exhibition Out of Actions: Between Performance and the Object,
1949–1979. That same year, the exhibition Artist Body - Public Body toured extensively,
including stops at Kunstmuseum and Grosse Halle, Bern and La Gallera, Valencia. In 2004,
Abramović also exhibited at the Whitney Biennial in New York and had a significant solo
show, The Star, at the Marugame Museum of Contemporary Art and the Kumamoto Museum
of Contemporary Art, Japan.
Abramović has taught and lectured extensively in Europe and America. In 1994 she became
Professor for Performance Art at the Hochschule fur Bildende Kunst in Braunschweig where
she taught for seven years. In 2004, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the Art
Institute of Chicago, Plymouth University, UK, and Williams College, USA.
She was awarded the Golden Lion Award for Best Artist at the 1997 Venice Biennale for her
extraordinary video installation/performance piece Balkan Baroque‚ and in 2003 received the
Bessie for The House with the Ocean View‚ a 12-day performance at Sean Kelly Gallery.
In 2005, Abramović presented Balkan Erotic Epic at the Pirelli Foundation in Milan, Italy, and
at Sean Kelly Gallery, New York. That same year, she held a series of performances called
Seven Easy Pieces at the Guggenheim Museum in New York. She was honored for Seven Easy
Pieces by the Guggenheim, at their International Gala in 2006, and by the AICA USA with the
Best Exhibition of Time Based Art award in 2007. Abramović's work is included in numerous
major public and private collections worldwide. She was the subject of a major retrospective
at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, The Artist is Present, in 2010. Forthcoming in
2011, Abramović will be the subject of a major retrospective at the Garage Center for
Contemporary Culture in Moscow. She starred in a play, The Life and Death of Marina
Abramović, which is a re-imagination of Abramović's biography, at the Manchester
International Festival in July. Marina Abramović lives and works in New York.
IMAGE: Marina Abramović performing Entering the Other Side (2005) at the Solomon R.
Guggenheim Museum, New York on November 15, 2005, photo by Kathryn Carr, © The
Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York.