Sunday, October 10, 2004

Beaux Arts Ball:

American Institute of Architects

The Cincinnati Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) presented an evening of "Proportions, Contortions & Distortions: the Masquerade Beaux Arts Ball."

After the creation of the Beaux Art tradition in 1648 at L'Ecole National Superieure des Beaux Arts in Paris, festivals celebrating artistic accomplishments were held, culminating in a grand masquerade ball. The masks allowed guests freedom of cultural expression and created social equality among all in attendance.

Today, the AIA in Cincinnati continues this tradition as a celebration of the high arts in architecture, painting and sculpture.

The Beaux Arts Ball was under a canopy on the grounds of Grammer's in Over-the-Rhine. Chaired by Emily J. Shufeldt and Ray Mack, the event featured cocktails, dinner by-the-bite and performances by Robin Lacy & DeZydeco, the Pickled Brothers, the Mysterious Ways Dance Troupe, pianist Todd Hepburn and guitarist Nicolas Radina.

Cincinnati City Councilman Jim Tarbell, donning his signature top hat and tails, served as honorary chair. Host committee chairs were Steve Kenat, Tamara Harkavy, Heidi Jark and Matt Kotlarczyk. Guest of honor was renowned English-born sculptor Andrew Leicester, best known here for his creation of the flying pigs at Bicentennial Commons at Sawyer Point.

More than 250 cleverly clad guests purchased the $50 tickets for this year's ball. Proceeds will support the creation and conservation of outdoor public art projects in Greater Cincinnati, with a portion of the proceeds dedicated to AIA scholarship initiatives.

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