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Over $130,000 Raised for Art Education at the CMA Annual Gala

Left: Gala attendees enjoy the festivities. Right: A child at Prosperity Project, 
one of the CMA’s many partners in community outreach, shows off her creation.


Columbia Museum of Art volunteers dedicate hours throughout the year to help the museum raise critical funding to meet its mission to provide lifelong learning opportunities for the community

Columbia, S.C. – The Columbia Museum of Art (CMA) announces a record-breaking fundraising achievement during the 2016 Gala, In the Mix: From Vintage to Vogue. The event was held on Saturday, March 5, and was inspired by the major spring exhibition, REMIX: Themes and Variations in African-American Art, in an evening filled with extraordinary cuisine, décor, and entertainment. Through sponsorships and ticket sales, over $130,000 in net profit was raised to support the CMA’s mission to provide outstanding art and arts education for lifelong learning and community enrichment.

“The Gala is always a fantastic way to experience the museum. You get to have fun, enjoy incredible food and drinks, and dance to a band downstairs and a DJ upstairs. You also get to visit the galleries to see this amazing exhibition,” says 2016 Gala Chair Julie Brenan, who is also a member of the board of trustees. “Our volunteers have a passion for the arts, the museum in particular, and their community. We couldn’t wait to open the doors and welcome everyone to the best party in town.”

Each year, a team of more than 50 volunteers works for several months to create an elegant event and transform the entire museum to fit the theme of the spring exhibition. The REMIXexhibition features bold and brilliant colors and figures interlaced with historical references and contemporary features. The Gala theme reimagined the past and viewed things through a different lens, as traditional cuisine and décor were “remixed” to create something new, and vintage elements were fused with the vogue. Nearly 900 people attended the event as In the Mixwelcomed the commitment of over 100 sponsors and raised a record-breaking $130,000 after expenses, proving to be the most successful gala to date.

“The Columbia Museum of Art annual Gala truly illustrates how dedicated volunteers can make a big difference in the cultural life our community,” says CMA Executive Director Karen Brosius. “This annual event keeps growing and provides the museum critical funds that support our community outreach, K-12 education, and adult programming efforts. We cannot thank our dedicated volunteers and sponsors enough for helping share in our vision to be a cultural hub for the Midlands.”

This event is made possible with generous contributions from our sponsors: Presenting Sponsor: Jim Hudson Lexus; Gold Sponsors: BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and Lexington Medical Center; Silver Sponsors: BB&T, Loosh Culinaire Fine Catering, and Hannah and Ron Rogers; Bronze Sponsors: Blanchard Machinery Company, Dr. Suzan D. Boyd and Mr. M. Edward Sellers, Julie and Mike Brenan, Marcia and Al Montgomery, Pout, and Wells Fargo; Benefactors: Collins and Wright, First Citizens Bank, Dick and Jamie Harpootlian, Party Reflections, Julianne Sojourner/My Friend’s Garden, Sonoco, Steven Ford Interiors, Inc., JR and Nancy Stock, and Woodley’s Garden Center; and many others.


Photos from the 2016 Gala are available here.

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