The British Friends of the Art Museums of Israel rounded off their 70th anniversary celebrations with a gala dinner at the Dorchester in central London.
Addressing the 420 guests, young Los Angeles-based multimedia artist Alex Israel spoke approvingly about his recent visit to the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. He had been impressed by its educational programmes for soldiers and children and activities bringing Muslims and Jews together. He and the museum had “so much more in common than just our name”.
Guests were also addressed by the museum’s new director, Ido Bruno, who reported on the success of the exhibition by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, which has attracted half-a-million visitors.
Suzanne Landau, director of the Tel Aviv Museum, said 100,000 people had attended its Louise Bourgeois exhibition.
As part of a lucrative auction, Mr Israel donated a painting, Wave, that sold for £36,000.
A sculpture by Ai Weiwei fetched £48,000 and a painting by Gideon Rubin — whose exhibition at the Freud Museum in London opens next month — raised £25,000.
Mr Rubin told the JC that he supported the charity in appreciation of “the work they do, which in these difficult times is even more precious. It is a privilege to be able to help by donating my work.”
The dinner raised more than £600,000.