Gwyneth Paltrow, Julia Roberts, Lady Gaga, amfAR Global Campaign Chair Sharon Stone, and amfAR Chairman Kenneth Cole were among those who gathered at the sixth annual amfAR Inspiration Gala Los Angeles to pay tribute to Ryan Murphy in recognition of his contributions to the fight against AIDS.
The event, presented by Harry Winston and M•A•C Viva Glam, raised $3.1 million for amfAR’s life-saving AIDS research programs.
Cheyenne Jackson, Cuba Gooding Jr., Matt Bomer, Angela Bassett, Courtney B. Vance, Jamie Lee Curtis, Denis O’Hare, Diane Kruger, Joshua Jackson, Sarah Paulson, Lea Michele, Emma Roberts, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Billie Lourd, Evan Peters, amfAR Global Fundraising Chair Milutin Gatsby, Sarah Hyland, Alessandra Ambrosio, Lily Donaldson, Carly Rae Jepsen, Jaime King, Diane von Furstenberg, Zendaya, Matt Bellamy, Lydia Hearst, Dylan Penn, Rachel Zoe, and others were also in attendance.
Gwyneth Paltrow hosted the black-tie benefit at Milk Studios, introducing amfAR Chairman of the Board Kenneth Cole. Mr. Cole spoke passionately about amfAR’s Countdown to a Cure for AIDS initiative, which is aimed at developing the scientific basis of a cure by 2020. American Horror Story stars Cheyenne Jackson and Angela Bassett then took the stage to introduce guests to amfAR’s new social media campaign. They encouraged everyone to upload their own rendition of the 1985 Grammy Award-winning song “That’s What Friends Are For” to social media using #SingForAIDS, with the goal of creating a worldwide rallying cry for an end to AIDS.
Julia Roberts presented the amfAR Award of Inspiration to her friend Ryan Murphy, describing him as “a person very much like this organization – tireless in pursuit of learning, healing, of correctness, connection, and equality.” Murphy then pledged his total support to being a lifelong ambassador to amfAR and the organization’s vitally important mission, stressing that “the cure is still on the horizon and we need to continue storming up that hill.”
The event featured a colorful and competitive live auction, conducted by Andrea Fiuczynski and amfAR’s Global Campaign Chair Sharon Stone, who encouraged guests to give generously to amfAR’s efforts to find a cure for AIDS.
· The undisputed highlight of the auction was a Timothy White photograph of amfAR’s Founding International Chairman, the late Dame Elizabeth Taylor. After a lively bidding battle, the photograph sold twice for a total of $400,000 to Aileen Getty and Lady Gaga.
· The auction also included a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: a walk-on role in the latest installment of Ryan Murphy’s Emmy and Golden Globe-winning anthology series, American Horror Story: Hotel. Participating in the auction once again, Lady Gaga agreed to take a photograph with the winner and bid on the item herself to raise the price of the lot, which ultimately sold for $150,000.
· Actress and model Jaime King helped introduce exquisite Harry Winston drop earrings titled “Reflection.” With help from Cuba Gooding, Jr., who grabbed the microphone and encouraged guests to “show me the money!”, the earrings sold for $60,000.
· Another exciting auction item was an opportunity to customize a FIAT 500 Cabrio. The package, donated by Lapo Elkann, included the chance to meet with the Garage Italia Customs design team and collaborate on designing a car to the winning bidder’s personal aesthetic taste. It sold twice for a total of $200,000.
The evening ended with a powerful and moving performance by Lady Gaga, who received standing ovations throughout her entire set, which included her latest emotional ballad, “Till It Happens To You.”
The after party, sponsored by DSQUARED2, continued at 1 OAK into the early morning.
The event was presented by Harry Winston and M•A•C Viva Glam. MoëtHennessy was the Official Wine and Spirits Partner. DSQUARED2 was the Official Fashion Sponsor. Microsoft was the Official Technology Partner. Variety was the Bronze Sponsor. Cadillac was the Vehicle Sponsor. Delta Air Lines is the Official Airline of amfAR.
The amfAR Inspiration series, produced by Josh Wood Productions, celebrates all aspects of men’s fashion and style while raising funds for amfAR’s life-saving AIDS research programs, and it continues to attract the most prominent and influential members of the entertainment, fashion, and business communities. To date, the Inspiration series has raised more than $20 million to benefit amfAR, and has been held in cities such as New York, São Paulo, Paris, Toronto, and Miami.