Here's a statistic that'll make you drop your Dom Perignon: Of the $104 million raised for amfAR and the Dallas Museum of Art in Two x Two Gala's 22 years, an eye-popping $11 million of it came at a gala last weekend. In the year of corona-recovery, 2021.
Cheers to their theme "Big Love."
On Saturday, October 23 (while the other half of the city was whooping it up at Cattle Baron's Ball), the sold-out, black-tie dinner and contemporary art auction attracted 490 guests to the Rachofsky House for what has become one of fall's grandest galas. Until last fall, that is, when we-all-know-what canceled the whole affair.
“Welcome back, and this year welcome back really means something," said Howard Rachofsky, who along with his wife, Cindy, founded the event and co-hosted with Lisa and John Runyon. "As we reflect on these past 18 months and the dramatic changes in everyone’s daily life, the opportunity to get together for two profoundly worthy causes is a reason to cheer. After a surreal absence last year, we are thrilled to be supporting amfAR and the Dallas Museum of Art.”
Presented by Nancy C. Rogers and designed by Todd Fiscus of Todd Events, the dinner took place in the traditional 7,000-square-foot geodesic dome tent, which soars 48 feet in the center. It was transformed into a space inspired by honored artist Yoshitomo Nara’s works: organic shapes and colors, a prominent leaf motif, and palettes of chartreuse, burgundy, orange, and ivory inside and outside of the tent.
The evening began with a Tequila Casa Dragones, Moët Hennessy USA, and Belvedere cocktail reception and an art and luxury item silent auction, followed by a seated, multicourse dinner.
AmfAR co-chairs T. Ryan Greenawalt and Kevin McClatchy presented Nara with amfAR’s 2021 Award of Excellence for Artistic Contributions to the Fight Against AIDS.
After dinner, pop singer Rita Ora entertained with a set of her hits, including, "Let You Love Me,” “Ritual,” “Lonely Together,” and “Anywhere.”
There were 130 artworks offered in the live and silent auctions, plus a number of luxury and experiential packages. Conducted by Michael Macaulay of Sotheby's, the live auction featured works by María Berrío, Bosco Sodi, Asuka Anastacia Ogawa, Peter Bradley, Joel Mesler, Jiro Takamatsu, and Nara. When the final gavel was dropped, $11 million had been raised.
The party didn't stop when the bidding ceased. An after-party, presented by Neiman Marcus and conceptualized by Todd Events with the theme "Big Love," rocked the back garden of The Rachofsky House until the wee hours. It was officially the third party of the Two x Two weekend, as the First Look preview party had taken place two days earlier at Highland Park Village.
Two x Two has become the largest fundraiser in the United States for essential AIDS research at amfAR, as well as the largest single annual source of funds for contemporary art acquisitions at the DMA. Through its funding, the DMA has added more than 295 major works of contemporary art to its permanent collection.
Notable gala attendees included Dirk and Jessica Nowitzki, Jerry and Gene Jones, Cornelia Guest, Adam Lippes, Justin and Kimberly Whitman, Jack Moody, Elle Moody, Ross Moody, Elaine and Neils Agather, Elisa and Stephen Summers, Nancy Dedman, Capera Ryan, Hugh Washburne, Wes Gordon, Geoffroy Von Raemdonck, Gerald Ford, Electra Ford, Kelli Ford, Hassan Pierre, Naznin and Mahmoud Khimji, Ceron, Tracy and Josh Madans, John and Deborah Scott, Mariel Sholem, Carolina Alvarez-Mathies, Karl Michael, Kristen and Reed Gibbins, Lele and Armand Sadoughi, Kara Goss, Stephanie Seay, Bela Cooley, Teal Black, Lee Evans Lee, Tina Craig, Leigh Ann Clark, Brittney Webb, Mark Solomon, Alvise Orsini, Filippo Tattoni-Marcozzi, Paul Arnold, Susan and Bob Kaminski, Phil and Samantha Wortley, Deena Abdulaziz, Christen Wilson, Muffin Lemak, Aindrea Emelife, Dana Arnold, Bernard and Michelle Nussbaumer, Channing Corbett, Moll and Charlie Anderson, Simon Bland, Kaleta Blaffer Johnson, Jordan Jones Munoz, Christian Munoz, Brian Bolke, Faisal Halum, Cameron Silver, Stephen Farish, Lauren Allday, Kevin Kramer, and James and Kristin Hallam.