NEW YORK, NY.- The J. Paul Getty Trust
presented the annual J. Paul Getty Medal to artist Anselm Kiefer and writer Mario Vargas Llosa at a dinner at the Morgan Library and Museum in New York City on November 13, 2017.
Writer and essayist Adam Gopnik gave the introduction of Mr. Vargas Llosa, who was honored for his commitment to the moral and intellectual value of the arts. Historian Simon Schama presented Mr. Kiefer, who was honored for his powerful work and complex subject matter, dealing with controversial issues from recent history.
More than 200 guests from the worlds of art, literature, and philanthropy attended the dinner, including Kwame Anthony Appiah, Tina Barney, Eli Broad, Peter Chernin, Larry Gagosian, Agnes Gund, Christo Javacheff, Karl Ove Knausgaard, Thomas Krens, Nicola Lopez, Richard Meier, Carrie M. Weems, and Shelby White.
This year we held our annual dinner in New York for the first time because New York, as another international center of the arts, aligns with the Gettys commitment to the worldwide preservation of our collective cultural heritage through collections, exhibitions, conservation, research, scholarship, and philanthropy, said Maria Hummer-Tuttle, chair of the J. Paul Getty Trust. In that spirit we honor two artists whose work delights, provokes, and inspires across continents.
Of Mario Vargas Llosa, Jim Cuno, president of the J. Paul Getty Trust, said No one has challenged or delighted the reader more than Mario Vargas Llosa. He has championed the view of culture as a vital consciousness that engages, enhances, and revivifies the world in which we live. For this reason, the Getty Trust is honored to bestow upon him the 2017 J. Paul Getty Medal.
In accepting the award, Mario Vargas Llosa said simply Learning to read is the most important thing that has ever happened to me.
Presenting the award to Anselm Kiefer, Mr. Cuno said For his commitment to the ruthless exploration of the border between art and life, and for the courage and beauty of his work, the Getty Trust is honored to bestow upon Anselm Kiefer the 2017 J. Paul Getty Medal.
The true artist is always an iconoclast, said Kiefer.
Since it was established in 2013 by the trustees of the J. Paul Getty Trust, the medal has been awarded to six individuals to honor their extraordinary contributions to the practice, understanding and support of the arts.
Past recipients of the J. Paul Getty Medal have included Harold Williams and Nancy Englander, who were honored for their leadership in creating todays Getty; Jacob Rothschild, for his work in the preservation of built cultural heritage; Frank Gehry, for
transforming the urban landscape with buildings such as the Walt Disney Concert Hall; Yo-Yo Ma, for his efforts to further understanding of the worlds diverse cultures; and Ellsworth Kelly, for paintings and sculptures of the highest quality and originality.