The occasion called for creative apparel: duct tape suit jackets or a dress that incorporated neckties into a flashy and beautiful design.
Art lovers turned out by the hundreds Saturday night for ' largest fundraiser of the year, . Attendees were treated to a feast not only of the culinary variety, but also of auctions, awards, mural painting, circus performances, live music and dancing at .
As the evening began, high school students with the painted a repesentation of the mural that will adorn the Monarch-Chesterfield Levy on the stage. Abstract parts of their work were auctioned during dinner to raise money for the project. Simultaneously, art lovers bid on artist-created hats and browsed items available in the silent auction, which featured donated original art, dinners at fine restaurants, massages, dance classes and much more.
Partygoers shared not only a love for the arts, but a genuine love for the evening.
“Oh, I love it,” Mary Beth Shaw said, an artist whose first book Flavor for Mixed Media has just been published. “It's a great celebration of the arts. The arts are alive in the west.” Shaw donated a copy of her book and private art classes for a lucky bidder.
, founding board member of Chesterfield Arts—whose donated framed photograph took second place honors in the judging competition—was happy to see art being celebrated .
“It's absolutely wonderful to see the world without art moving into the world of art,” Hirsch said.
The students working on the “Make Your Mark” mural project were also thrilled to be part of the evening and the mural.
“I am so excited about this event,” Lafayette high school senior Mackenzie Moll said. “It's really opened my eyes to new experiences. It gives the youth of the community a voice.”
Newcomers to Art Feast marveled at the size and excitement of the event.
“It's fun,” Pete Bring said. “It's a great environment with a great selection of art and jewelry to bid on.”
Amanda Luebbehusen concurred. “It's our first time, and I love the art and the table decorations—such unique creativity.”
“It's a big honor,” Wiegand said. “They don't just give it out, you have to earn it.”
“I'm proud to do anything that has to do with the glorification of the arts,” Weber said.
Diners were then entertained by performers with Circus Harmony from the City Art Museum, who performed gymnastics with displays of strength, grace and agility. They hung from streamers and a ring suspended from above; one performer bent herself into impossible positions which drew audible gasps from the audience.
The evening concluded with music and dancing to the rhythm and blues, soul and urban funk tunes of Brian Owens Band.
Chesterfield Arts Executive Director Stacey Morse said the amount Art Feast raised won't be determined for about a week, but she was very pleased with the turnout of nearly 500 people.
“It's awesome,” Morse said. “The turnout is really good.”
Wiegand summed up the evening with his thoughts on the deeper meaning of an event which promotes and encourages art.
“It's one of the great things about this country,” Wiegand said. “You have the right to express yourself.”
Check out Chesterfield Patch on Facebook for more photos of the event.