New York Icons Alicia Keys + Swizz Beatz Honored at the Brooklyn Artists Ball
New York icons Alicia Keys and Kasseem Dean, aka Swizz Beatz, were honored the night of April 3, 2017 at the seventh annual Brooklyn Artists Ball at the Brooklyn Museum. Keys, the iconic songstress, feminist & activist, and Dean, the legendary hip-hip producer and art connoisseur, were feted for their philanthropic efforts in shaping and promoting the visual arts. Dean is a Brooklyn Museum Trustee, and the leading force behind the Bacardi-sponsored No Commission art fairs which have taken place in Miami, New York, and London. This marked the first occasion the musical power couple were celebrated jointly for their cultural contributions.
The dazzling event included 1200 guests, combining an eclectic mix of celebrities, musicians, artists, cultural influencers, and successfully raised more than $1.7 million. The color blue set the tone for the night as guests were encouraged to wear blue to complement the museum's Infinite Blue exhibit on display. Luminary guests included Lenny Kravitz, Maxwell, Janet Mock, David Byrne, Anja Rubik, Fred 'Fab 5 Freddy' Braithwaite, Sarah Jones, Mickalene Thomas, Derrick Adams. Dustin Yellin, KAWS, Steve 'ESPO' Powers, Swoon, Hank Willis Thomas, Marilyn Minter, among many others. Other heavyweights included Anne Pasternak (The Shelby White and Leon Levy Director, Brooklyn Museum) and Eric Adams ( Brooklyn Borough President).
The evening was kicked-off with cocktails in the museum's lobby featuring sounds by DJ Runna while guests enjoyed being beautified at Swoon's Pearl Beauty Shop. Custom limited edition prints by Derrick Adams, Todd James, Nathaniel Mary Quinn were also on view to enhance the experience. Guests then headed to a sold-out dinner in the ornate Beaux Arts Court, while taking in a performance by emerging singer/cellist Kelsey Lu. The night was capped by a roaring after-party hosted by KAWS and helmed by DJ Runna and co-honoree Swizz Beatz. Throbbing '90s hip-hop, r & b, and house music pulsated all night keeping the crowd captivated. Swizz Beatz, announced he was due in China the next morning for the Shanghai edition of No Commission, but delivered one of those exceptional New York City nights fit for the 'Gram.