June marks the start of summer in our salty city, and each year it brings longer days, hotter nights, and a few of our favorite yearly gatherings: Pride (this Sunday!), the HRC Gala (next weekend!), and of course, the annual, amazing, UMOCA Gala. Happening this Saturday evening, the gala is a yearly fete which facilitates mixing, mingling, and the raising of funds to support one of our greatest local operations: the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art. Each annual event is outfitted with food, drink, a stellar auction, and a fabulous theme. In years passed, we've happily attended a punk party and a old fashioned hoedown in the name of modern art. This year, the focus is reminiscent of a simpler time. The year is 1931: Both James Dean and James Earl Jones are born (wrap your head around that), the Depression and Prohibition are both in full swing, the Empire State building is completed and open to the public, and a little space called the Art Barn opens in Salt Lake City. From there, the space would become the Salt Lake Art Center, until it eventually evolved into the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, as we know it now. Whatever its name, this space has been one where "artists and appreciators have been drawn together to form the very heart and moxie of Salt Lake City’s creative essence" since 1931, so the year is definitely one to celebrate, say we.
The night promises to be one to remember, with eats, cocktails, and apropos tunes from the Joe McQueen Quartet; and a UMOCA Gala wouldn't be complete without a few silent and live auctions. There are loads of goods to be got here. Think: a slew of stunning, original artwork, as well as a few fantastic travel opportunities. Yup. This year, the live auction will include travel, and there's nothing like flying the friendly skies to get you out of the rigamarole and into a good mood. On the table for a bid: museum-exploring, art-packed, inspiring getaways to five of our favorite cities--NYC (for the Armory and Volta art fairs and DIA Beacon), Montreal (Musee de Beaux Arts, anyone?), Denver (DMOCA, BMOCA, and galleries galore), L.A. (hit LACMA, see the Broad), and Miami (umm…VIP to Art Basel!). The silent auction--loaded with incredible works by the likes of Andrew Moncrief, Van Chu, John Bell, and Ryan Ackerly, among others--is live now, so we urge those of you that have snapped up tickets to browse the wares and place your bids sooner than later. As always, we revel the chance to raise both glasses and funds in the name of a worthy cause, and SLC's art scene is undeniably deserving. Slip on your ritziest post-Gatsby attire, and we'll see you there.