This past Saturday, the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity hosted its spring fundraiser, The Red Dot Auction. Over 125 guests filled the Center's space in Orange and engaged in, what can only be described as, conversation. There was talk, of course, about the artwork donated by 45 brilliant, caring, and creative artists, from a kindergartener on up to an Academy Award-winning animation director and beyond.
The place was a hive of activity as our guest jostled for position along the wall of the silent auction artwork. Guests were greeted by the accordion stylings of Eric Stefani (Gwen's brother, you know,) and his companion, Specially (yes, that's the greyhound's name) and were ushered into the event on a cloud of camaraderie.
Of course, there were liquid libations (thank you Frank, Cassandra & Joe,) and an amazing array of hors d'oeuvres from Chef Ray and his crew (the sweetest people you'd ever hope to meet, I kid you not.) All of which kept our guests content throughout the evening.
Our staff and volunteers, many of whom were decked out in shades of the color of the evening (that would be RED, in case you hadn't been paying attention,) such as Pam Marsden, Program Director for the Center, far left; next to Pam is Tracy Tanner, the President of the Chuck Jones Council for Creativity, who are the volunteers for the Center, her neighbors and dear friends (and now ours too!), Karen Ketterer (center) and Beth Bacchi (far right,) and last, but certainly not least, the dynamic and creative Linda Krall, a volunteer for the Center (second from right.)
Marian Jones, left, with animation director Chris Bailey, center, contributed wonderful works of art for the auction (BTW, EVERY single work of art in the auction went home with a collector!) The beautiful and talented Dina Andre (right, she was, for many years, Chuck Jones's personal assistant) also made the scene.
Linda Jones Clough, seen here flanked by her two handsome sons, Todd on the left and Craig (the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the CJCC,) pause for a moment during the night's festivities to smile for the birdie. Linda also was a contributing artist to the silent auction (did I mention that EVERY single artwork donated for the silent auction sold? I did? Well, pardon me for repeating myself, but I can't help it!)
No fundraiser is complete without a live auction. There were six fabulous packages and the bidding was fierce for every one of them. But, tell me, who wouldn't want a behind-the-scenes tour of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences? Or the Nokia Theater at L.A. Live (tech geeks, this one was for you!)? A 90 minute Chuck Jones Film Festival? The devil you say! What about living the life of a renaissance prince and commissioning your very own Chuck Jones limited edition? Four people thought it was such a great idea that ALL of them will be. Woo Hoo!
Did I mention that without the tireless efforts of Executive Director Cheryl Posner (seen here with collectors Leigh and John Yetsko–Leigh also is a volunteer on the Council, but I digress,) whose every waking moment for the past several weeks has been focused not only on all of the other parts of the Center's many programs, exhibitions and such, but she was also making sure that every little detail of the Red Dot Auction was perfect. I think Chuck Jones said it best, "All great endeavors are 90% hard work and 10% love and only the love should show." That's our Cheryl!
Throughout the evening, guests were encouraged to finger paint and leave a their 'mark' on a special canvas displayed just for this occasion. Master muralist and amazing actor, James C. Mulligan contributed the center portrait of Chuck Jones.
It is Chuck Jones to whom we owe a debt of gratitude. His work has impacted so many lives, and in a variety of ways too numerous to list here, that a mere 'thank you' hardly seems sufficient. The best way we can repay his creativity and artistic generosity is through the programs, exhibitions and events of the Center; they extend his genius for generations to come.
Our heartfelt thanks to those who found it in their hearts (and their wallets) to donate to the important work of fostering creativity in people of all ages that is the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity's mission. Thank you!
Photos courtesy Stephen Russo