The Art of Planning

Chris Brice, Co-Chairs of the Speed Art Museum Ball Viki and Paul Diaz, and Sarah Brice

Chris Brice, Co-Chairs of the Speed Art Museum Ball Viki and Paul Diaz, and Sarah Brice

This year’s Speed Art Museum Ball takes place on Feb. 28 at the iconic Seelbach Hotel. This year is the final year the Ball will take place outside of the museum’s grounds before its re-opening in 2016. We caught up with co-chair of this year’s Speed Ball Viki Diaz who is sharing the role with her husband Paul.

What an honor it must be for you and Paul to chair the Speed Art Musuem Ball this year, correct?
Oh, yes we were delighted to have been asked to Chair this year’s Speed Museum Ball. It’s such a pivotal time for the Museum and we are happy that we can support the Speed by ensuring its success. The Ball is the largest fundraising event for the Museum and we hope to raise the bar this year.

What have you enjoyed in years past about the Speed Ball?
It’s always an elegant, fun and special night with friends! We have looked forward to the annual Speed Ball since we moved to Louisville 13 years ago.  Of course, this year is extra special for us since we had a hand in planning the Ball.

As someone who is so closely involved with the Speed Art Museum, why do you think it’s such a special part of the Louisville community?
The Speed is an amazing place with arts education, unique exhibits and fabulous community events. The new Speed, due to open it’s doors in 2016, will provide a one-of-a-kind venue with indoor and outdoor spaces for art and gatherings. It’s anticipated that thousands of people will regularly pass through the new Speed Museum campus. The potential for the Speed to share art and unique experiences with the community will be endless.

How excited are you about the new addition to the museum when it finally reopens next year?
I think the whole community is anxiously awaiting the opening. It’s going to be such a transformation from the original Speed. The new contemporary North Building is breathtaking and the art-house cinema is something that this community has needed for a long-time. I hear that it’s going to be state-of-the-art, and has the capabilities to play 16mm and 35mm film, as well as digital movies. Rumor has it that Ghislain is planning some exciting activities and events for the re-opening, but he’s keeping those a close-kept secret and not telling anyone yet!

The Speed Ball is always a special event in the city’s social calendar, what can people expect this year and get excited about?
The Speed Museum Ball is a signature event in Louisville and one of the most anticipated evenings of the year.  This year one of the biggest things to get excited about is the variety of musical entertainment. There is literally something for everyone! After dinner, guests can dance to the musical stylings of Burning Las Vegas, and starting at 10 p.m., guests can party late into the night to the high-energy sounds of DJ Sleepy T, in the Rathskeller room of the Seelbach. If you’re looking for something a little more intimate, you can sit back, relax and listen to some classical piano.

This year the Ball is heavily involved with the West End school, could you tell us about this partnership and what it means for the Speed?
As the Speed deepens its commitment to community engagement, we felt it was important to connect this mission to the Ball. Ball committee members and staff volunteers partnered with the West End School on a six-week photography project. Student-created photographs and poems from the workshops will be on display at the Ball and sold during a silent auction, with proceeds going back to the West End school.

Finally, why should people come out and attend this year’s Speed Ball?
To see and be seen, of course!  But seriously, you’ll have a blast and support one of the biggest social events of the year. The money raised supports the initiatives of the museum, like exhibitions and programming at their satellite space, Local Speed. Local Speed has kept the Museum in the public eye during its closure and has reached over 17,000 people by expanding their target audience before re-opening. We look forward to welcoming all the guests at this year’s annual Speed Art Museum Ball! Vt

For more information or to purchase tickets go online at www.speedmuseum.org/museumball.html or call 502.637.6363.