Asian Cultural Council gala raises nearly $1.6 million
The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Saturday, July 20, 2024

Asian Cultural Council gala raises nearly $1.6 million
Josie Cruz Natori, Wendy O’Neill, Valerie Rockefeller, and Susan Rockefeller at the ACC Year of the Dragon Gala at The Rainbow Room on May 14, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Kelley/

NEW YORK, NY.- Asian Cultural Council honored Hong Kong-based Danish businessman Hans Michael Jebsen, American philanthropist David Rockefeller, Jr., and Japanese contemporary artist and ACC alum Takashi Murakami at its biennial fundraising gala in New York City on May 14, 2024. Mr. Murakami received the John D. Rockefeller 3rd Award, presented to an ACC alumnus from Asia or the United States who has made a significant contribution to the international understanding, practice, or study of the visual or performing arts of Asia. This award for outstanding professional achievement commemorates the deep and long-standing interest of John D. Rockefeller 3rd in Asian art and culture. Valerie Rockefeller presented the Award that includes a monetary prize of $50,000 towards the advancement of the awardee’s work. During his acceptance speech, Mr. Murakami announced he would generously donate the prize money back to the ACC. ACC Honorary Co-Chair Wendy O’Neill and ACC Chair Josie Cruz Natori introduced gala honorees Mr. Jebsen and Mr. Rockefeller, Jr.

Held at the Rainbow Room, 30 Rockefeller Plaza, 65th Floor, in New York City, the festive evening began with cocktails followed by a seated dinner. Evening activities included the presentation of the JDR 3rd Award and honors to Mr. Murakami, Mr. Jebsen, and Mr. Rockefeller, Jr.

There were performances by ACC alumni dancer Yin-Ying Lee (2022) and pianist Alex Peh (2019) and a live auction for once-in-a-lifetime lots, including a new painting created by Mr. Murakami. The work fetched $135,000. Dancing followed. All proceeds support the Asian Cultural Council.

In addition to the Asian Cultural Council’s Board Chair Josie Cruz Natori, Co-Vice Chair Susan Rockefeller, Executive Director Judy Kim, the honorees and presenters, and 230 guests attended, including gala co-chairs: Wendy O’Neill and David Rayner, Mercedes Zobel, and gala vice chairs: Abigail Alvarez, Cai Guo-Qiang and Hong Hong Wu, Yama Gaw and Daphne King-Yao, Désirée Jebsen, and Janet Nathanail and William Flanz. Additional guests included Ronnie Chan, Douglas Hsu, Julie Kohn and Dan Swift, Ida Liu, Peter Liu, Charles and Emily Rockefeller, and Shannon Wu and Joseph Kahn.

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