Fish Out of Water


November 25, 2001|By Sloane Brown

Three Baltimore youth arts programs made big catches -- and the event organizers were delightedly caught by surprise -- as the "Legg Mason Big Catch Dinner & Auction" netted more than $370,000 for the Mayor's Advisory Commission on Arts and Culture arts grants program, Baltimore City School Fine Arts Program, and the mayor's initiative to wire all city classrooms.

Some 450 guests gathered at the Walters Art Museum for the culminating event of the city's Fish Out of Water program. For several months, fish sculptures -- decorated by local artists -- had dotted the city landscape. Now 60 of them were to be auctioned off.

When the first fish -- one covered with pennies -- went for $9,000, the feeding frenzy was on. Fifty-nine fish later, event chair Sue Hess was beside herself with glee, even though the average price of $8,000 had kept her out of the running for her favorite catch. The evening's whopper? The "Cone Fish," with a copy of Matisse's "Pink Nude" on its side, which sold for more than $22,000.

Spotted in the throng: Rand and Chip Mason, event honorary co-chair; Suzi and David Cordish, Lynn Deering, Barbara Himmelrich, Gail Kaplan, Suzie Chisolm and Gary Vikan, event committee; Leslie Landsman, Fish Out of Water creative director; Mary Sue McCarthy, Fish Out of Water project manager; Karen Bokram, Neal Borden, Joan Davidson, Paula Rome and Clair Zamoiski Segal, Fish Out of Water advisory committee; Siegfried Gerstung, Gerstung Inter-Sport president; Tuck Tyler, BGE real estate broker; Dave Willemain, Baltimore public works department attorney; Myra Ford, Board of Child Care accounting clerk; Steve Lovelady, Thompson Hine attorney; Donni Dingman, Verizon external affairs manager; Stephen Bisbee, eOriginal president; Charles W. Johnson, Blaylock & Partners senior managing director; Mary Carroll Alderman, Panache owner; Benno Hurowitz, retired Fox Chevrolet president; Chris Hoehn-Saric, Sylvan Ventures CEO; Sig Shapiro, Samuel Shapiro Co. chairman; Tony Pagnotti, WMAR-TV personality; Tony Hawkins, Hawkins Development president; Dave Carberry, G3 Technology vice president; and Bill Jews, CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield president / CEO.

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