“We believe that art transforms lives, and this is why Dennis Scholl has been selected by the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum FIU as our honoree for the Art Transforms Award,” said Dr. Jordana Pomeroy, the museum’s director, at the recent Benefactor Impact event.
“His passion for the arts and philanthropy serve as an inspiration for our museum benefactors, and for the community.”
As an alumnus of Florida International University (Class of ’77), Scholl’s first experience ever inside a museum was at the original location on campus 40 years ago when he was a young student at FIU. That was the year the museum was founded. “Since then, the Frost Art Museum FIU has served as a cultural beacon for four decades, bringing new cultural experiences to generations of art lovers, students, patrons and visitors from all over the world,” Pomeroy added.
The art museum’s patrons, Patricia and Phillip Frost, joined Dr. Pomeroy in honoring Scholl alongside Dr. Kenneth Furton, FIU provost, and Daniel Perron, the museum’s board chair.
This year’s Art Transforms Benefactor Impact event drew Miami’s leading arts patrons and cultural leaders including: Joan Johnson; Jonathan and Karen Fryd; celebrity chef Michael Schwartz and his wife, Tamara; Lisa and Gary Payton; Amy and Richard Kohan; Fred Snitzer; Ed Christin; Lourdes Tuleda; Karen Escalera; Cameron Basden; Ellen Salpeter; Lorie Mertes, and Alex Gartenfeld.
Guests joined Debra and Dennis Scholl on exclusive tours of the museum’s collection vault. The Scholls also invited guests on a personal tour of the exhibition “Marking the Infinite: Contemporary Women Artists from Aboriginal Australia” drawn from their own collection, which will continue its national tour after headlining at the Frost Art Museum FIU.
The event was sponsored by EWM Realty International, Bacardi and Rumbas Party Rental & Events.
Arts champion and award-winning filmmaker Scholl spoke passionately at the event about how as a young student at Florida International University in 1977 (the same year the museum was founded), his life was transformed after feeling compelled to walk into the campus museum that day.
Since then, Scholl and his wife have become nationally renowned champions of the arts. They are recognized for their support of art and artists, and are holders of the largest private collection of aboriginal art in the United States.
The Scholls are highly regarded for their efforts to build the permanent collections of contemporary art museums and are founding chairs of the Guggenheim Photography Committee, the Tate American Acquisition Committee, and an acquisition committee for the Pérez Art Museum Miami where they have donated 300 works from their personal collection.
Scholl recently stepped down from his leadership position at the $2.5 billion Knight Foundation, where he oversaw funding of close to $200 million to arts organizations across America.