Leonardo DiCaprio bid on, and won, a VIP soccer experience with Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo at the first-ever Haiti Takes Root gala at Sotheby’s on Friday night. The event, which benefited Sean Penn’s J/P Haitian Relief Organization, also boasted some other one-of-a-kind experiences, including a five-star meal in New York City with Bill Clinton, Penn, and DiCaprio. In addition, artworks by Deborah Kass, Ed Ruscha, Thomas Houseago, and Jonas Wood were auctioned. Andy Cohen was hoping to pick up some art for his digs.
“I’ve been on a little bit of an art tear lately,” Cohen divulged “I bought some lithographs from Christie’s and Sotheby’s at their last two sales, and I bought something at Frieze today. I just renovated my apartment, so this is my moment.” The Bravo star sported a five o’clock shadow that he put down to the fact that he didn’t have to tape an episode of Watch What Happens Live that evening.
“I have to shave for the show every night, so any night that I don’t have to, I don’t,” he explained, before helpfully noting that he was wearing a purple suit, which was meant to offset the stubble.
Donna Karan, who has her own Haitian charitable project, said, “We’re doing it together. You can’t take on this country. You need a posse. We’re part of the posse.”
And as for why Karan is so committed to Haiti, she exulted, “I love Haiti. Love, love, love Haiti. The people are magnificent. They have such quality. They’re all artisans, they all have such potential . . . the energy in Haiti is amazing.”
The designer revealed that she has started a school there with Parsons School of Design, and Rihanna has just signed up to do a project together.
“We’re creating products, giving them jobs,” she said. “Instead of giving them money, you’ve got to give them fishing rods, and the one thing about them is that they’re all creative.”
Also in attendance were Penn, Naomi Campbell, Ellie Goulding, and Gayle King. The evening finished with a spirited performance of “Rise Up” by Andra Day, which got the crowd on their feet.
By NICKI GOSTIN MAY 8, 2017