Texas Cultural Trust Hosts Tenth Biennial Texas Medal Of Arts Awards With Two-Day Events

By Rob Giardinelli  Photography by Miguel Angel and Tyler Schmitt

THE SETTING: Over the course of two magical days, over a thousand of Texas’ most devoted and passionate patrons of the Arts celebrated the tenth biennial Texas Medal of Arts Awards. This years honorees featured eleven individuals and institutions that have left their mark on not just Texas, but around the globe.

THE STYLE: The festivities kicked off at the Blanton Museum for the Arts Alive! VIP reception, where cocktails flowed as freely as the chatter as honorees effortlessly mingled with guests and listened to fine musicians. The following afternoon the fun was at the Governor’s Mansion for the Rise with the Arts brunch where honorees were presented with medals by Governor and First Lady Abbott.

The events concluded at The Long Center in Austin for Texas Medal of Arts Awards gala dinner. Highlights of the awards ceremony included Lauren Anderson’s star turn as the evening’s emcee, Brandon Maxwell’s hilarious, yet heartwarming acceptance speech, Mark Seliger breaking out his vintage camera to take a picture of the audience from the podium and show-stopping performances by music legends Jennifer Holliday and Boz Scaggs. Additional recipients included Conspirare, artist Trenton Doyle Hancock, author Stephen Harrigan, actor Matthew McConaughey, architects Elaine Molinar and Craig Dykers, the Vidal Manuel Treviño School of Communications & Fine Arts in Laredo.

THE PURPOSE: The Texas Medal of Arts Awards, chaired by Leslie Blanton and Leslie Ward, raised almost $1.8 million dollars for the Texas Cultural Trust whose mission is to be the leading Texas voice for the arts in terms through education, advocacy and economic impact.