3 June 2019

Everything you need to know about the Wearable Art Gala

Year after year the photographs of the Carters are released in the most magnificent costumes of african deities, but, does anyone really know what's actually going on?

Of course we’re all trying to make links between this gala and another gala that happens a month prior, more publicity yet all of the bells and whistles; but for the sake of maintaining the integrity of this affair we won’t, okay? Great.

This isn’t just any gala this is a Richard and Tina Knowles Lawson gala. Decorated actor with a careers spanning across five decades, Richard Lawson has appeared on the silver screen and Broadway with television roles on iconic shows consisting of Saved By the Bell, All my children, with movies such as for coloured girlsandPoltergeist, Lawson has also become one of the most important acting coaches in Hollywood with mentoring schemes and counseling sessions, the arts has always been near and dear to his philanthropy.

Have you ever heard Tina Knowles’ description of how Destiny’s Child came to be? Well if not, I’ll give you a brief summary: Matthew Knowles had brought the girls together and booked their first show, however without a name it was pretty difficult to just simply be those dancing girls from Houston. So, during a brainstorming session Tina turned to the bible, opened it up, and three little words sprung out to her destiny’s children…. The rest is history.

As a designer and hairstylist, Beyonce has spoken extensively about the fact that at the beginning of their career, Ms. Tina was forced to create unique costumes for the group due to the fact that designers would refuse to style the group for shows or even awards ceremonies. It wasn’t until after a decade and well into Beyoncé’s solo career were luxury houses calling upon the Houston native to sport their lines; as is the tale of many an artist of colour starting out in the entertainment industry.

In 2016, the two joined forces to create the Wearable Art Gala in association with non- profit the LA theatre, Where Art Can Occur (WACO) to provide access for those in the community to an institution that is largely exclusionary. From mentoring 12-14 year old, budding art’s enthusiasts to providing support and sponsorship for artists of colour of all ages.

Not only are Richard and Tina Knowles Lawson the Artistic directors of the night, and selector’s of the annual theme, Beyoncé (Knowles Carter), Kelly (Rowland) Solange- with honorary mention, Blue Ivy Carter, because…. all hold seats on the advisory board. Guests are advised o wear the most extravagant, most eccentric of pieces that reflect both fashion and art (emphasis on the art however). Unlike, the other gala, guests actually embrace the freak.

Different curators curate the night each year with an exhibition including the works of the artists who’s works are to be auctioned during the evening, in addition to musical performances (not by Beyoncé).

If you were wondering, hmm… such a great cause, I would love to attend and support the community, well there are five different tickets that you could purchase. Three big wig tables, Gold $50,000, Silver (25,000), Bronze ($15000) and two variants of the individual tickets ($1500/1000). So, the rest is up to you, but picture this: Blue Ivy Carter and Tyler Perry at a bidding war, Tiffanie Anderson of the Pussycat Dolls affiliate girl group Girlicious, resurrected, auctioning her Art and Beyoncé and Jay Z slow dancing to Maxwell… I mean, what’s not to love.

  • words Connie Mangumbu cover image

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