Wednesday, October 26, 2011

"ART is LoVe"

Robin Bronk Alan Cumming and Brian Smith

by contributor Chantal Botana

"ART is LoVe," so says filmmaker Spike Lee. Though not in attendance, Lee's presence was known as his scribe graced every T-shirt given to those willing to chalk a saying of their own on a blackboard for the make-shift photo booth. Fun stuff!

About 200 guests were in attendance for the evening celebrating "Art & Soul. The Stars Unite to Celebrate and Support the Arts," a coffee-table book photographed by Pulitzer Prize-winner Brian Smith & edited by Robin Bronk of The Creative Coalition (TCC).

Robin intro'd Brian as her "Partner in ideas. The most soulful man." Brian took the stage briefly to thank his colleagues, as well as credit his wife Fazia with putting a smile on the face of each and every subject. The project features celebrities from film, music, television, and theatre as they sat for portraits and shared personal stories about the impact of art on their lives and on society.

Stats on the process:
20 shoot days.
246 celebrities.
30 hair and makeup artists.
25,657 photographs.

All photos were taken on a Sony a900 and the event was held at the Sony Store @ 550 Madison Ave., NYC. Hey Sony, thanks for the purple earbuds - a girl can never have enough purple accessories.

My favorite quote... It's a toss-up between "Art is cooooool!" delivered by Robin's daughter Kiki Weiss, and "Art is smart. Liquor is quicker" from Elliott Erwitt, photographer and filmmaker.  Isn't that the truth! And yet, good things come to those who wait (or so I'm told). My LEAST favorite quote... "Art is fart without the F" by actor/filmmaker Adrien Grenier.  No offense Adrien - you're still cute and all, but I grew up with Puritans from Massachusetts and that talk just isn't their thing.

Quotables - from the book:
"Art is the master, I am its slave!" - Samuel L Jackson, actor.
"Art questions." - Kelsey Gramer, actor.
"art! can't eat it - yet it feeds us..." - Matthew Modine, actor.
"Music, painting, theatre, film, dance, architecture, design. It's not extra...It's who we are." - Tim Daly, actor & president of TCC.

Notables - at the event:
Robin Bronk, CEO of TCC
Alan Cumming, actor.
Dan Finnerty, actor.
Richard Kind, actor.
Joel Warren, hairstylist to the stars, of Warren-Tricomi.

Do your part....Help Save the Arts!
Share your story and help TCC reach their goal of 100,000 testimonials to bring to Washington, DC to show our elected officials why the arts need their support. Visit to share your thoughts on the arts.