By Rebecca Pikus
Dimitri Halkidis has pulled it off again!! — beautifully, with an upcoming Exhibition honoring Steven Chase at his Gallery 446 in Palm Springs.
When Steven Chase — iconic Palm Springs Interior Designer, –was honored by Desert AIDS Project at “A Valentine’s Gala” in 1993, along with former first lady Betty Ford and McDonald’s heiress Joan Kroc, the program for the evening noted:
“Steve’s intense interest in art has generated a significant collection of contemporary art, displayed in his private residences and Rancho Mirage office. While his collection contains museum quality works, he constantly acknowledges and seeks out work by young and upcoming artists. He is a supporter of art scholarships … and major contributions from his collection have been made to the Desert Museum in Palm Springs.”
When the award-winning interior designer created his own 7,000-square-foot home in the desert, Chase made sure the living room was large enough to display his 17-foot-wide painting by Helen Frankenthaler, along with other massive works of modern art. Chase designed interiors and helped choose artwork for homes around the world of celebrity clients like Dyan Cannon, Farrah Fawcett, Gene Hackman, Johnny Mathis, and a variety of others. Right here in the Coachella Valley, clients like Helene Galen not only counted Chase as the talented professional who designed her home’s interiors but also as a friend.
Involved with Desert AIDS Project from its earliest days, Chase was a long-time volunteer, donor, and board member. He knew that one of his clients had already made gifts totaling more than $5 million to support AIDS research and provide care through her Joan B. Kroc Foundation. Working closely with Mrs. Kroc, Chase helped make possible her major gift that created the first medical clinic at Desert AIDS Project.
Following his death in 1994, many in the community rallied together the very next year to create the First Annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards gala, to benefit D.A.P. Twenty years later, the event has grown to become one of the highlights of the Palm Springs social season. Honoring major HIV/AIDS activists from science and medicine, as well as stars of stage and screen, “the Steve Chase” attracts 1500 or more attendees from across the country and has grossed well over $1 million for the last several years.
Now, Chase is helping to contribute to D.A.P. once again through the Steve Chase Associates Art Collection. Gil Rose, a long-time member of D.A.P.’s Partners for Life annual giving program, along with Stan Russell. Rose, who is also D.A.P.’s Volunteer Curator of Art & Collectibles, said “This is everyone’s opportunity to purchase artwork from the D.A.P. Archival Collection, including the Chase Collection and works from a variety of other artists.”
DIMITRI HALKIDIS has made his Gallery available for this Exhibition – “The Heart of Giving” — Gallery 446, 446 S. Indian Canyon, Palm Springs, Ca 92262 (760) 459-3142 – www.gallery446.com ;– Opening Reception this SAT, July 5, 2014, 6:00-8:00PM. Exhibition is open through Aug. 31, 2014 — Fundraiser benefiting Desert AIDS Project