U-M Gala Features Artwork Inspired by Medical Research


ANN ARBOR — Some virtuosos express their talents through clay, paint, wood, words. or dance. For others, the media are the very cells and molecules of the human body. Each expert excels in his or her chosen field, and on one unprecedented night in May, they will come together in Detroit for a gala celebration: An Evening of Art + Science.

This unique fundraising event will unveil the works inspired by the pairing of 11 physician-researchers of the University of Michigan Health System’s A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute, with noted artists from the Detroit area and beyond.

For months, the artists have been meeting with their scientific counterparts to discuss the creativity that abounds in their respective disciplines, and to gain ideas and inspiration from the medical research being conducted by these dedicated clinician-scientists from the University of Michigan.

On May 22, the results will be revealed when the scientists, the artists and supporters come together at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit  to discuss the collaborations.

The art pieces will be sold at auction and the proceeds used to fund the Taubman Emerging Scholars program, which helps early-career clinician-scientists establish their laboratories.

Meanwhile, the eminent senior scholars of the Taubman Institute are conducting groundbreaking research on a variety of devastating diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes and multiple sclerosis, among many others.

In less than six years since the founding of the institute — part of the University of Michigan Medical School — the research it has sponsored has produced more than 50 human clinical trials of potentially life-saving treatments.

The work of the Taubman Institute is funded solely by private philanthropy. The Evening of Art + Science will raise funds to help maintain the pipeline of life-altering medical discoveries, and will showcase for the Metro Detroit community the amazing breakthroughs that are emerging from the laboratories of the Taubman Scholars, all of whom are practicing physicians and U-M faculty in addition to being active scientific researchers.

Among the artists whose work will be auctioned are choreographer and theater director Aku Kadogo, painter Simone DeSousa, interactive artist Osman Khan, Lynne Avadenka and the team of Cezanne Charles and John Marshall. For a complete list of the artists and researchers participating in the project, and their biographies, visit taubmaninstitute.org/artscience. 

Dinner tickets for a farm-to-table culinary experience are available for a donation of $500.

Tickets for an after-party featuring music, dancing and signature cocktails are available for $75 ($50 if purchased by May 1).  Visit taubmaninstitute.org/artscience/partytix to purchase.

Tickets that include the dinner, after-party and a special VIP reception before the event are $1,000.

To purchase dinner and VIP tickets, or for more information, contact Gail Ball at (248) 705-0287.

All proceeds benefit the Taubman Institute’s Emerging Scholars Program for early career physician-scientists at the University of Michigan Health System.