Issue #181  5/31/2011
George Eastman House Will Hold Its Second Benefit Auction On Oct. 3rd in NYC At The Metropolitan Pavilion

George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film is organizing its second benefit auction of photographic objects and prints, books, and camera technology, to take place in New York City at Metropolitan Pavilion at 7 pm, Monday, Oct. 3. Denise Bethel, director of the Photographs Department at Sotheby's New York, will again volunteer her services as auctioneer, as she did for last year's inaugural benefit auction, which raised more than a half-million dollars in less than two hours for Eastman House.

Artists whose works will be among those in the 2011 auction include Roger Ballen, Jeff Bridges, Carl Chiarenza, Robert Glenn Ketchum, Les Krims, Steve McCurry, Barbara Morgan, Lori Nix, George Seeley, Neal Slavin, George Tice, Larry Towell, Charles Traub, Alex Webb, William Wegman, and Brian Ulrich, recipient of the 2009 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial award. All of the items auctioned are donations; none are from the Eastman House collections.

Coupled with an online component, last year's benefit auction of 300 photographic items ultimately raised more than $650,000, making it the largest fundraiser in the museum's 64-year history. More than 300 people attended last year's Eastman House benefit auction. It was "the best attended auction of the season," according to Alex Novak of IPhotoCentral.com. The online component that accompanied the Sotheby's New York auction was the auction house's largest charity auction in history. The 2010 donations came from more than 200 donors and featured most processes of photography from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

The George Eastman House 2011 Benefit Auction's live portion will be preceded by a reception, as well as a program featuring conversations with artists. An online selection also will be available. According to iGavelAuctions.com, the 2010 online lots garnered more than 1,700 bids from an international audience of collectors.

The challenge of the recession has required Eastman House to employ new fiscal solutions, such as this auction. Proceeds from the benefit auction help the Eastman House--the world's oldest museum of photography--maintain its extensive collections of photographs, camera technology, motion pictures, and related literature, totaling more than four million objects. Eastman House also serves as an educational institution and center of preservation, offering degree-granting graduate programs in photographic and motion-picture film preservation on the site of the National Historic Landmark house, gardens, and museum.

As museums look for creative ways to raise funds, what is so impressive about this benefit is summed up by Dr. Anthony Bannon, the Ron and Donna Fielding Director of George Eastman House: "For more than 60 years George Eastman House has showcased and supported photography, and now, for this auction, we turned to the photography world to help the museum. We are overwhelmed by how enthusiastically all have embraced this effort."

To donate to the auction, or to register to bid in the live and online auctions, please visit http://auction.eastmanhouse.org . Donations will be accepted until June 1. To receive updates or an auction catalog, please email your contact information to kbaldwin@geh.org or call 1-585-271-3361. Information about the venue is available at http://www.metropolitanevents.com .