Model Iman was honored at the 22nd annual New York amfAR gala with the organization’s Award of Courage on Wednesday night at Cipriani Wall Street.
The statuesque supermodel was acknowledged for her “longstanding support of amfAR and their commitment to the fight against AIDS,” as were Pace Gallery CEO and president Marc Glimcher, and The Inheritance playwright Matthew Lopez.
The event, which raised more than $1.4 million for amfAR’s notable research programs, regularly takes place just prior to New York Fashion Week. Other attendees who were in the Big Apple for the gala and subsequent sartorial events included Heidi Klum, Anna Wintour, Elsa Hosk, Zac Posen, Julian Schnabel, Devon Windsor, and Donna Karan. Many other models, designers, artists, and fashion experts also attended, according to a release published on the amfAR site.
The altruistic source offered details about the money-raising evening in lower Manhattan.
Padma Lakshmi was the first to speak as she thanked the fashion community for their continued support of amfAR’s work to bring the global AIDS epidemic to an end.
At that point, storied Vogue editor-in-chief Wintour presented the courage award to playwright Lopez. She talked about The Inheritance, a very worthwhile evening in the theatre that is “a testament to both the devastation of AIDS and [the] ‘humor, wit, and joy in the face of adversity.'”
Then, amfAR Chairman of the Board Bill Roedy spoke, offering the mind-boggling fact that every day, 5,000 people across the world contract HIV. After suggesting that his guests for the evening should consider contributing to amfAR’s innovative breakthrough cure research, Roedy handed over the mic to British Vogue Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful, who presented Iman with her award.
The Ghana-born journalist told the audience that the 64-year-old Somali-American model-entrepreneur “continues to fight for equality, [to] call out prejudice, challenge injustice, and work for a better world wherever she finds those in need of fairer treatment.”
Iman then recalled the early efforts to eliminate the AIDS epidemic, thanks especially to Dr. Mathilde Krim and Elizabeth Taylor, amfAR’s founders. After that, the legendary fashionista requested a reaffirmation of commitment to their agency and to their cause.
When Pace Gallery’s Glimcher spoke after being awarded his prize, he talked about when the HIV and AIDS crisis hit New York City, and how artists and scientists came together to do their best to defeat the horrific epidemic.
A plethora of treasures were then put on the auction block, the profits of which benefited amfAR’s work. Among the valued items sold to the highest bidder were a Terry O’Neill photograph of Brigitte Bardot that went for $105,000, a 10-day wilderness safari trip through Botswana, a Julian Schnabel landscape made of oil, wax, and resin work that sold for $210,000, and an oil-on-linen painting by Alex Katz, which went for half a million dollars.
American singer-songwriter Charlie Puth and German American musical duo SOFI TUKKER entertained the amfAR gala guests, closing out the evening of fun and charity on a high note.