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David Konker, Melinda Winn, Karen Konker

On the heels of a successful Artscape Reimagined at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden, Artscape Chairwoman Kaki Hopkins, along with her stellar committee, hosted the Great Contributor to Art Award and Invitational Fine Art Auction on Friday, May 12. The black tie event began with a cocktail reception and hors d’oeuvres, giving attendees time to peruse the live and silent auction items, which were generously donated by dozens of acclaimed artists and local Dallas notables, such as Mayor Mike Rawlings, Dr. Kern Wildenthal and Jim Keyes.  The springtime weather served as the perfect backdrop for the first time event.


J. Mark Wolf, Dallas Arboretum chairman of the board, welcomed guests. After dinner, he called up Gloria Snead, Artscape Award Chair, to join him. Wolf said, “It is my pleasure to introduce the Great Contributor to Art Award. This aptly named prize was designed and contributed by Gary Lee Price, whose Great Contributors exhibition at the Arboretum in 2016 was the inspiration for the award’s name. Receiving this inaugural award tonight is someone we know and admire deeply, Craig Hall.  Craig, who is an entrepreneur, businessman, New York Times bestselling author and philanthropist, is also a lifelong art collector.  He believes that art nourishes the human spirit and can make a profound difference in people’s lives.  His company, HALL Group, displays an extensive contemporary art collection at their properties. Craig truly embodies this award, so we are pleased to welcome and honor Craig Hall tonight as the inaugural awardee of the Great Contributor to Art Award.”


“It is an honor to receive the Artscape Great Contributor to Public Art award, and being able to share our art collection with the public has been a great joy of mine,” said Craig Hall, founder and chairman of HALL Group and the evening’s award recipient. “However, tonight’s award is really a tribute to the talented artists who make all of this possible. It is because of their hard work and creativity that we are able to contribute art for our communities to enjoy.”


Hopkins added, “It was a great pleasure to have Craig Hall as our inaugural awardee. He has done so much to make art available for the public to enjoy by investing in many artists' works and displaying them so they can be seen by all. He is a terrific citizen of our city, and we are fortunate that he calls the Dallas Arts District his home.”


The live auction generated plenty of spirited bidding, especially Pamela Nelson’s “Mother Plant,” which graced the invitation cover, program cover and notecards given to patrons. Hopkins added, “I was overwhelmed by the artists’ and galleries’ generosity and pleased that our audience showed them the appreciation we all felt by participating in a spirited and fun auction.”


The Artscape Selection Committee and Heritage Auctions chose the following for the live auction, with the criteria to create a group diverse in style. Each artist graciously donated his/her piece to benefit the Dallas Arboretum, with many nature-inspired:


Carly Allen-Martin – “Exhale Doubt 2/50”

Carolyn Brown – “White Rose” and “Orange Ruffled Rose”

Marianne Gargour – “Visions Revisited”

Beth Hickman – “Moonlight Gardening”

Arienne Lepretre – “Arboretum Day”

Christopher H. Martin – “Cassini Disc II”

Pamela Nelson – “Mother Plant”

Brad Oldham – “Traveling Man”

Jessie Palmer (Am. 1882-1956) – “Still Life with Roses”

Steinunn Thórarinsdóttir – “Source II”

George Tobolowsky – “Looking for Light”

Mary Tomás – “Bloom”

Mary Vernon – “Raccoon”


The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218.  The Dallas Arboretum is also the home of the internationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. It is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum.  The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department.  WFAA is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum. Visit or Facebook for more information.

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