Ellis Sotheby's International Realty -

Annual Benefit Has Raised Over $180,000 for Hudson Valley Arts Education

Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty and the Edward Hopper House Museum & Study Center raised $31,285 during an annual fundraising event this month to support arts education programs benefiting more than 1,000 Hudson Valley public school students in grades K-12. The event has raised over $180,000 since its 2016 launch.

The benefit was held Oct. 9 at Treetops, a 7.5-acre private estate in Sparkill, New York, and drew over 80 attendees. Guests bid on several auction items, including original art and a tour of Edward Hopper’s New York exhibit at the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Speakers included Farris Wahbeh, the Benjamin and Irma Weiss Director of Research Resources at the Whitney Museum of American Art; Eric Shiner, former senior vice president of contemporary art at Sotheby’s, who served as the event’s auctioneer; and Phil Grabsky, an award-winning British documentary filmmaker and director who debuted an exclusive clip of “Hopper: An American Love Story,” a film that examines Hopper’s art, life and relationships from his early career to his critical and commercial acclaim.

Rothko, Banksy, Alfred Hitchcock and even The Simpsons have been influenced by the unique way Hopper captured American life.

 

From left to right: Eric Shiner,Richard Ellis, Cynthia Branca, Kathie Bennewitz, Farris Wahbeh and Phil Grabsky

“Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors and patrons, we have raised over $180,000 in the last seven years to nurture student engagement with the rts that foster peer interaction and socialization inside and outside of the academic setting,” said Richard Ellis, owner of Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty. “This special event supports the development of creative young minds by connecting students with the art and legacy of Edward Hopper through a thriving arts education program.”

Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty currently is listing Treetops for sale at $3.99 million. The circa 1859 Second Empire-style estate near Snedens Landing hosted many Hollywood stars, including Liza Minnelli, Joan Rivers, Helen Hayes, Joan Collins, Ginger Rogers and Brooke Shields. In recent years it was the weekend retreat of the late Arlene Dahl, a screen actress from the Golden Age of Hollywood, and her husband, Marc Rosen, an award-winning perfume bottle designer.

“The benefit was a tremendous success due to the generosity of event sponsor Richard Ellis of Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty and the gracious hospitality of Marc Rosen, who hosted this year’s benefit at his beautiful residence, Treetops, a truly and romantic property that transported guests to another era,” said Kathleen Motes Bennewitz, Edward Hopper House & Study Center executive director.

“The energy and optimism found among the event’s attendees translated into significant support for the Edward Hopper House & Study Center as it moves forward to 2023 and grows its art education series and Nighthawks mentorship program,” she said, adding that the annual benefit helps close gaps in arts education through partnerships with public schools, family workshops and its award-winning Nighthawks mentorship program. A portion of the monies raised will fund arts education classroom space, exhibitions and teaching curriculum.

Named after a 1942 painting by Edward Hopper by the same name, the Nighthawks mentorship and arts education program helps high school students develop professional skills, assume leadership roles and facilitate engagement with artwork and historic spaces.

The arts education program initially was funded in 2016 with proceeds from a fundraiser sponsored by Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty that benefited Nyack Public Schools, Nanuet School District, Clarkstown Schools, East Ramapo Schools, South Orangetown Middle School and Sleepy Hollow School District. The program expanded to Orange and Bergen counties in New Jersey this year.

Additional donations toward this initiative can be made by visiting https://www.edwardhopperhouse.org/donate.html.

Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty is a leading luxury real estate broker located in the Hudson Valley village of Nyack, approximately 22 miles from New York City.

By Evy Apostolatos

NYACK, N.Y. (Oct. 18, 2022)

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