Hamilton Club created a series of dinner and reception events to showcase a local artist’s work to club members and fellow art collectors.
Paying tribute to a local artist can help to build camaraderie among art-loving members. Last January, the Hamilton Club in Lancaster, Pa., showcased member-owned paintings by David Brumbach during a special exhibition that commemorated the 25th anniversary of his death.
“David was a local artist and the formation of the exhibit was to represent a wide range of his work, but most of all as a tribute to the beloved artist,” says Food and Beverage Manager Bethany Wood.
Spearheaded by the club’s art committee and food-and-beverage team, the event series consisted of four outings: a welcome reception, a speaker event and dinner, a wine dinner, and a prospective member reception. While entrance to the gallery was free of charge, the speaker/dinner and wine dinner events were ticketed at $35 and $79.95 a head, respectively.
|THE GOAL: Honor artist David Brumbach, many of whose works are owned by members of the Hamilton Club, while instilling pride and generating interest in the local art scene.
THE PLAN: Create a series of dinner and reception events to showcase Brumbach’s work to club members and fellow art collectors, while engaging, enlightening and entertaining attendees.
THE PAYOFF: Members were energized during an otherwise quiet period at the club, inspiring future events to honor other local artists.
To help drum up member interest, the events were featured in the club’s monthly newsletters one month prior to, and then again after, the gallery’s opening.
“Photos were shown in our publication for those who were away for the winter and may have missed it,” notes Wood.
The gallery opened on January 11 and ran through the end of the month, letting members who couldn’t attend the events peruse the art on their own time. “Often some would just bring a friend to lunch and enjoy the gallery over a cup of coffee,” she adds.
With 44 of Brumbach’s paintings temporarily installed in a makeshift gallery, members were able to experience their clubhouse in an entertaining and educational format. All four events had strong attendance, Wood reports, with 98 drop-ins at the opening reception, 56 guests at the speaker event and 46 at the wine dinner.
“We believe this was a very unique niche within the club, and the members really enjoyed the look and feel of the clubhouse during that time,” she says.
Signature member bars provided plenty of refreshment for art-goers, while a local art director engaged patrons with a background discussion on Brumbach, who painted in both realistic and abstract/non-objective styles.
Overall, management was pleased with the outcome of the event series. “Not only did it exceed the expectation of the art committee, there were several other members who joined us in celebrating our local art scene,” notes Wood. “The benefit was to re-engage our membership in what normally was a quiet, dark winter month.”
Encouraged by the turnout, the club quickly got to work planning its next art-inspired event: a meet-the-artist night with a local artist sharing his or her work during a member dinner. Plans were also made for an art auction at the end of each season, with proceeds going to the artist and the club’s art funds.
“This allows the club to purchase new art to share with membership,” Wood notes. “We look forward to the possibility to feature another local-
artist showcase again soon.”