During Scope Miami Beach Bombay Sapphire Gin, along with Russell and Danny Simmons’ Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, announced Aron Belka as the Grand Finale Winner of the Sixth Annual Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series at a special VIP soiree.
Celebrities, musicians, socialites, fashion designers and art influencers attended the exclusive finale party at the Beach Tent at Nautilus, a SIXTY Hotel, on Friday, December 4. Guests included Rosario Dawson, Solange Knowles and celebrity stylist Ty Hunter; Recording Artists: Miguel and Teyana Taylor; supermodels: Shaun Ross, Garrett Neff, and Lady Victoria Hervey; BK The Artist; TK Wonder and Cipriana Quann, DJ Cassidy, and Patrick Janelle and Founder of The Liquor Cabinet. Attendees sipped artfully crafted and delicious Bombay Sapphire cocktails while dancing the night away to music of DJ Kitty Cash.
“What is really important is that you are here and you are talking, you are looking, you are discussing and you are feeling something,” said Dawson during welcoming speeches. “Movies do that, food does that, sports do that, and art does that. I am grateful for Rush Philanthropic and Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series coming together for six years in a row to make sure people come together to appreciate art.”
Choosing the victor of the annual nationwide search for the next big names in visual arts took careful consideration from a jury panel including Rush Philanthropic co-founder Danny Simmons, Vice President of SCOPE Art Show Daria Brit Greene, and Afropunk Community Affairs Director Manushka Magloire. The winning artist, Aron Belka will collaborate with actress, social activist, and Creative Mentor Rosario Dawson on a public mural installation in Spring 2016.
Now in its sixth year, the Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series, an annual collaboration with Russell and Danny Simmons’ Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, casts its net nationwide in search of the most talented emerging visual artists. Thousands of artists were invited to enter the 2015 Artisan Series by creating a piece of inspired, original art. The work of ten artists was then selected from local gallery events across the United States including New York City, Chicago, New Orleans, Detroit, Washington D.C., Atlanta, San Francisco, Miami, Houston and Los Angeles. Two additional finalists were determined online by popular votes.
Along with Grand Finale Winner Aron Belka, two other artists were selected among the 12 finalists who’d made their way to the exclusive Finale bash: Shawn Warren from Chicago and People’s Choice Becky Rosa from Miami. For the second year in a row, all three of the top artists will have the unique opportunity to create a largescale mural in each of their hometowns next spring, as part of the Bombay Sapphire Mural Arts Project. The Grand Prize winner will also receive a solo exhibit at SCOPE NYC this march.
As part of her longtime advocacy for positive social change, Rosario Dawson recently launched Studio 189, an online platform headquartered in Ghana, dedicated to promoting and fostering African culture and African-inspired content through a blend of creative projects and e-commerce. The primary focus of Studio 189 is empowerment, education and employment among artisans and creative types. Rosario has teamed with the BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Artisan Series program as an extension of the actress’ commitment to the global artistic community.
The partnership between Bombay Sapphire and Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation has evolved from the brand’s longstanding commitment to fostering creativity and supporting artists in a variety of different mediums, including design, film and visual arts.