Last week, Publicolor celebrated its 22nd Anniversary at their annual gala, Stir Splatter + Roll, on April 23, 2018 at the Metropolitan Pavilion. The evening’s colorful cocktail hour began at 6pm with 18 painting stations where guests participated with some of NYC’s leading artists, designers, and architects to create customized works of art.
Publicolor honored longtime supporter Chris Ward (AECOM VP and CEO, Metro New York, and former Executive Director of Port Authority), who attended with his family, along with groundbreaking composer Philip Glass, with the Catalyst for Change Award who performed at the benefit.
While working from the Port Authority, Ward was instrumental to secure Publicolor’s 2002 community revitalization project, The Painted Promenade. Students in the Publicolor program, from high schools across the City, painted a bridge on West 39th Street between Ninth and Tenth Avenues in sunshine yellow and turquoise blue. Sixteen years later, the colorfully painted walls have become a fixture in Hell’s Kitchen (and the backdrop to the famed Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market), thanks to Ward.
“It’s always a joy to celebrate our students who are succeeding despite the enormous challenges of poverty- homelessness, food insecurity, lack of good role models or advocates, neglect,” said Ruth Lande Shuman, President of Publicolor. “They are realizing their potential — graduating high school, graduating college, and giving back to their communities by painting joy, respect, dignity and safety in under-resourced neighborhood facilities like health clinics, shelters, childcare centers, and community centers. They inspire us every day!”
The event’s master of ceremonies was Publicolor’s longtime supporter, Jeffrey Banks. The evening’s live auction was led by Christie’s Lydia Fenet.