On March 20th, Park Avenue played host to an art auction with all the usual glamour: gorgeous paintings displayed against floor-to-ceiling windows, guests mingling and sipping wine, a live pianist setting the mood. But Art Speaks was hardly your typical art-world fete. The paintings were valuable in more ways than one; they were each created by students at the International Academy of Hope (iHOPE), a Manhattan school serving children, adolescents, and young adults who have sustained acquired brain injuries or other brain-based disorders. 

For the guests at this gala, the colorful works were not only lovely additions to hang in their homes, they also represent the abilities and independence the students at iHOPE have found and fostered. Using innovative technology and adapted art materials, including switches to activate squirt guns, hairdryers, and pour cups, iHOPE's young artists created masterpieces.

Hosted at Mutual of America, the event featured moving remarks by a parent whose daughter was raised up by the iHOPE community, as well as a documentary showcasing their art-making process. 

Click through for an inside look at the evening and donate to iHOPE here!

[Photos courtesy iHOPE]