Monte Carlo Gala

The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego held its 42nd Annual Monte Carlo Gala on September 8th at the private Rancho Santa Fe home of devoted arts patrons and art collectors, Iris and Matthew Strauss. The couple’s 21,000 square-foot estate, Rancho del Arte, is filled with hundreds of works by internationally recognized artists from the 1980s to the present. Gala attendees enjoyed the opportunity to take curator-led tours of the collection during the event.

Iris Strauss, Joan Jacobs, and Karen Cohn served as co-chairs for Monte Carlo: An Art Affair. The trio of long-time MCASD supporters are leading a committee of 36 community philanthropists, including several MCASD Trustees, who helped arrange this exciting evening.

“There are so many passionate people in our community who care deeply about the Museum of Contemporary Art,” said Iris Strauss, who supports a variety of arts, educational, and cultural institutions throughout San Diego, and serves on the Board of the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego. “We want to harness their energy and help make this event truly the best it has ever been.”

With a nod to the very early days of the Museum’s Monte Carlo fundraiser, guests wore black-tie finery for an over-the-top glamorous féte that included fine dining, live entertainment, charity gambling, and dancing under the stars. Many artists whose work is included in the Museum’s permanent collection were in attendance at the event.

All funds raised at the event help provide vital support for MCASD's ambitious exhibition schedule and education programs. This year is critically important for MCASD as it embarks upon a transformational expansion of its flagship La Jolla campus. The multi-year project, which will quadruple gallery space from 10,000 to 40,000 square feet, will allow MCASD to continually show works from its outstanding permanent collection in addition to temporary exhibitions. Many exciting public amenities are planned including two levels of light-filled galleries, a public park, several ocean-view patios and terraces on different levels, a new book store, and much more.

Photography by Gilda Adler