Bemis Center For Contemporary Arts


Bemis Center Art Auction Breaks Records

And a Fun Time Was Had by All…..
Bemis Center Art Auction Breaks Records

It started on the morning of Saturday, November 13, as people stood outside in line before the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts even opened its doors. From 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., close to 150 people came to preview the contemporary art up for auction during the Center’s Sixth Annual Art Auction, which began that evening at 6:30 p.m. While previous years drew crowds of approximately 200, this year, over 400 art lovers came to bid for sculptures, paintings and prints. Over two hundred pieces, ranging in value from $100 to $60,000 were available for bidding, with more than 180 local, regional and international artists such as Red Grooms, Jun Kaneko, Laurie Anderson, Luis Jimenez and Christo and Jeanne-Claude donating their work exclusively to the Bemis Center in support of the 2004 auction. The event kicked off with a silent auction of more than 100 items, and the live auction began at 8:00 p.m. with not a seat remaining vacant as avid bidders filled the Center’s main gallery space to vie for their favorite pieces.

But even with such strong attendance, it was the auction results that proved most exciting for the Bemis Center. In 2003, the annual event raised $180,000. This year’s auction broke previous records and grossed more than $220,000, an increase of over twenty percent from 2003. All auction proceeds benefit the Bemis Sustaining Fund, which supports the Center's internationally recognized artist-in-residence program. Mark Masuoka, the Bemis Center’s Executive Director, notes: “We are extremely pleased with this year’s auction. The turn-out indicates just how much the public values contemporary art. The Center owes it all to the community who came to the auction and demonstrated such enthusiastic support of our Artist-in-Residency program. We couldn’t do what we do without them.”

For information on future events at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, to contribute to the Bemis Sustaining Fund or to learn about how to become a volunteer, visit

Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts
724 South 12th Street
Omaha, NE 68102
Admission and Parking: FREE
Phone:: 402.341.7130