2018 Box Art Auction to benefit East End Hospice

Thinking Outside (And Inside) The Box

Box by Leif Hope.

It was 18 years ago that supporters of the East End Hospice first asked 100 well-known area artists to take a small, unadorned box and create a unique work of art that could be put up for auction to benefit Hospice. This year, the charity tradition continues.

Randy Rosenthal, a local artist famed for carving his realism art out of a single piece of wood, has created a piece that looks like it has a torn yellow pad on top of a cigar box, with a drawing of a cigar box on top of it. Fulvio Massi’s box has birds’ nests in it. Giancarlo Impiglia’s box features his famed faceless colorful “beautiful people,” while Tracy Jamar’s is embroidered, like a sampler, with the words “Mud Thrown is Ground Lost.”

All of these, and more than 70 more, are part of the East End Hospice’s box art auction, which begins with a preview on Wednesday and Thursday, August 22 and 23, from 10 to 4 PM at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church’s Hoie Hall, 18 James Lane, East Hampton, continues with a “Meet the Artists” preview reception on Wednesday night from 5 to 7 PM, and concludes with the auction itself on Saturday, August 25. The silent auction begins at 4:30 PM, with the live auction at 5:45, with Lucas Hunt as auctioneer.

“So many artists on the East End have once again contributed their time, talent, and singular creativity to produce these unique works of portable art for this most worthy cause,” said Arlene Bujese, who is curating the Box Art Auction for the 14th year.

The brainchild of the late East End artist David Porter, and his wife, Marion, artists are given small donated cigar and wine boxes, and are asked to use the box inside and out as a canvas or base. With styles ranging from traditional landscapes to abstract art, the art forms incorporated this year are ceramics, sculpture, painting, collage, assemblage, and needlework on fabric.

Tickets for the wine-and-hors-d’oeuvres-heavy benefit are $75, not a big price in the tony Hamptons, but the auction prices can go high. Bujese remembers a box by Leif Hope, which incorporated dozens of tiny paintings inside, going for around $6000. Hope has another box in this auction, with a similar theme.

Reverend Denis Brunelle, Rector of St. Luke’s Church, will receive East End Hospice’s 2018 Spirit of Community Award for “his forceful work to ensure the dignity and respect for of all people in the East Hampton community, exemplifying a singular generosity of spirit,” according to EEH.

Bujese, who is not only the curator but also the event’s chair, reports that among the 85 artists who have answered the call to create memorable boxes for this year’s auction are 10 artists who have participated every year since the event’s inception, and 10 others who are participating for the first time. This year’s artists include: Alice Hope, Carol Hunt, Dennis Leri, Christa Maiwald, Fulvio Massi, Daniel Pollera, Gabriele Raacke, Hans Van de Bovenkamp, Dan Welden, and Frank Wimberley.

Van de Bovenkamp’s reason for participating is personal. “What love I experienced when my wife, Siv Cedering, was in the last stages of Parkinson’s disease,” he said. “Total strangers who came to attend to her became temporarily a family of love. For the past 15 years or so, it has been a joy to donate art and contribute to such a compassionate cause. I learned a lot from the total experience. It changed my life.”

All proceeds will benefit East End Hospice, which provides care for terminally ill patients, and their families and loved ones living on the North and South Forks of Long Island, as well as Brookhaven township.

The 2018 benefit’s Honorary Committee includes Ruth Appelhof, Michael Cinque, Theodore B. Conklin III, April Gornik, Sheldon & Margery Harnick, Jack Lenor Larsen, Barbara Layton, Dan Rattiner, Mayor Paul F. Rickenbach, Jr., Cantor/Rabbi Debra Stein, Donald Sussis, Sandra Wagenfeld, and Susan Kennedy Zeller.

More information about East End Hospice, the box art auction, and tickets, can be found on EEH’s website at www.eeh.org.