Art Launch hosts Inaugural Gala

On October 15, 2016, the newly-formed 501(c)(3) nonprofit Art Launch hosted its inaugural black tie gala at the Chrysalis in the Historic Houston Heights.  Art Launch is the charitable organization that now operates and funds the empowering Escapist Mentorship Program, founded in 2009 by renowned artist John Ross Palmer.  The chic gala honored the graduates of the 2016 Escapist Mentorship Program ( by unveiling their recently created original artwork to scores of Houston’s top art patrons.  The 2016 Escapist Artists are Tatiana Escallon, Jeffrey Alonzo Karahamuheto and Hugo Perez.   Escapist Artist Hugo Perez was named “Escapist of the Year” by a panel of twelve judges that scored the artists on their art acumen throughout the year of their training program.  Escapist Artists Nubia Gala-Seibert (2011) and Tina Duryea (2013) were honored with the Escapist Alumni Award for their accomplishments after graduation that furthered the Art Movement of Escapism.  Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner proclaimed October 15, 2016 to be Art Launch Day in the City of Houston and Houston City Council Member Amanda Edwards attended the gala to present the Proclamation on his behalf.

Ryan Lindsay, Alonzo Karahamuheto, Tatiana Escallon, Hugo Perez and Escapism Founder John Ross Palmer. Photo Credit Anthony Rathbun.
Ryan Lindsay, Houston City Council Member Amanda Edwards and John Ross Palmer. Photo Credit Anthony Rathbun.

Guests to the high-end affair enjoyed catering by Tony’s and a rousing performance by the legendary Kofi.  At the onset of the evening, Escapism Founder John Ross Palmer created a painting live in his studio that was auctioned later with 100% of the proceeds supporting Art Launch.  Art Launch Executive Director Ryan Lindsay says of the event, “Operating under Art Launch will grow the Escapist Mentorship Program immensely and this sold-out fundraising gala is just one shining example. Artist John Ross Palmer concurs, “One artist at a time, we are going to defeat the stereotype of the struggling artist.”

Owen Yang & Margaret Ferenz. Photo Credit Anthony Rathbun.
Jennifer Black, Steve, Darlene & Morgan Steen. Photo Credit Anthony Rathbun.
Nathan & Emily Vaughn. Photo Credit Anthony Rathbun.

If you have any questions about the inaugural Art Launch Gala (, Escapism Founder John Ross Palmer or his Escapist Mentorship Program (, please Executive Director Ryan Lindsay at 281-224-0968 or [email protected]

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