WHITE PLAINS, NY — April 24, 2022 — At its annual Arts Awards Celebration luncheon held on April 6 at the Brae Burn Country Club, ArtsWestchester spotlighted five honorees for the Arts Award. Spanning a range of disciplines, the 2022 winners were: Livia and Marc Straus, Lyndhurst (mansion), six Juneteenth Committees, the Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation and artist Joanie Madden.
Every year, leaders from Westchester’s arts and business community gather to applaud the stellar accomplishments of ArtsWestchester’s Arts Award winners. The event recognizes artists, cultural organizations, patrons and landmark institutions that enrich the cultural life of the county, its communities and its citizens. Proceeds benefit ArtsWestchester’s Artist Relief Fund.
The 2022 Arts Award winners were:
Livia & Marc Straus
Emily & Eugene Grant Arts Patron Award
Livia and Marc Straus have an enduring love of art and an insatiable curiosity about what is on the minds of artists. As avid collectors, their love and knowledge of contemporary art came to fruition in 2004 when they founded Hudson Valley MOCA in Peekskill. Both Livia and Marc have taken their museum experiences to the highest level at Hudson Valley MOCA, providing Westchester County and its surrounding area with one of its cultural treasures.
Arts Organization Award
With a rich history dating back to 1838, Lyndhurst is known as ‘where the Hudson Valley begins.’ It is one of Westchester’s proudest landmarks, not just for its architectural significance but for its embrace of the surrounding communities as a historic site in the second half of the 20th century. Lyndhurst is an arts organization that has been a cultural resource for Westchester and the tri-state area for more than 50 years, providing a view of the past and a window into the future of arts and culture.
After almost 200 years, the celebration of Juneteenth is now a national holiday that is embedded in our culture. Thanks to six local groups in Haverstraw, Irvington, Mount Vernon, Peekskill, White Plains and Yonkers, this important day of freedom for Black people is celebrated with parades, barbeques and other festivities, but not without serious reflection on the history of Juneteenth. Residents all over Westchester are enriched and united by the celebration of freedom on Juneteenth as each community shares its unique traditions for the holiday.
Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation
Sophia Abeles Arts Education Award
Since 1958, Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation and its School of Dance has promoted the awareness of dance, the opportunity to dance and enhanced dance education for audiences in Westchester. The School offers a broad range of dance education programs for all, from preschoolers through adults. It has extended and diversified its offerings to serve more locations and audiences, such as people with disabilities. One of the recently developed monthly movement programs offered to young students at Briarcliff Nursery School encourages learning and skill-building through action and play.
Joanie Madden is an award-winning flute and whistle player who has been a major influence in Irish music. Madden’s passion for Irish traditional music was born through her father, Joe Madden, an accordion player and well-known bandleader in New York’s Irish-immigrant community. The Yonkers resident, who has called Westchester her home for over 40 years, is praised for her expressive repertoire, ranging from jubilant upbeat tunes to slow evocative ballads. Madden is also the founder and leader of the internationally acclaimed Irish performing dance and music group Cherish the Ladies.
Two additional awards were announced at this Arts Award Celebration:
The Advancing Equity Award
This award recognizes a non-profit cultural organization that serves residents of Westchester and demonstrates exemplary leadership in advancing social justice, equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility through and in the arts.
The Larry Salley Photography Award
This award was established in 2018 by ArtsWestchester, the African American Men of Westchester and the Salley family to celebrate the life and artistic achievements of Lawrence “Larry” C. Salley, an active member of the Westchester Community.
# # #
About ArtsWestchester: For more than 55 years, ArtsWestchester has been the community’s connection to the arts. Founded in 1965, it is the largest private, not-for-profit arts council in New York State. Its mission is to provide leadership, vision, and support, to ensure the availability, accessibility, and diversity of the arts. ArtsWestchester provides programs and services that enrich the lives of everyone in Westchester County. ArtsWestchester helps fund concerts, exhibitions, and plays through grants; brings artists into schools and community centers; advocates for the arts; and builds audiences through diverse marketing initiatives. In 1998, ArtsWestchester purchased the nine-story neo-classical bank building at 31 Mamaroneck Avenue that has since been transformed into a multiuse resource for artists, cultural organizations, and the community. A two-story gallery is located on the first floor of ArtsWestchester’s historic building in downtown White Plains. For more information about ArtsWestchester’s programs and services, visit artsw.org