Photo Essay: GBK Oscar Gift Suite
Gifting events have long been a part of Oscar's history, and this year—more than ever—gift suites are going green and giving back. LAist attended the GBK "Circus of the Senses" event at the SLS Hotel on Friday, Feb. 20, to become familiar with the charities and artists involved with the event. Oscar nominees, presenters and other notable figures were given special wristbands that enabled them to receive goodies throughout the suite.
Twenty percent of the proceeds from the event benefited four charities (more info below). In addition, each charity was given a gift bag to auction off, and each celebrity in attendance was given the opportunity to give all or part of their gift bag to the charity of their choice.
This event included a number of rooms designed by FreshWata, featuring themes from the Best Picture contenders. Booths ran the gamut—from jewelry to spray tanning to food—and it was great to see many local artists featured in the mix. In addition, four charities were given great opportunities to spread the word about their causes. These were:
The Fuqua Film Program, a non-profit organization founded by director and producer Antoine Fuqua. This program seeks to open doors for young adults in inner cities across America. The organization currently sponsors a 12-week summer film intensive in Brooklyn for young adults.
Homeless Not Toothless is a charity led by Dr. Jay Grossman, who spends time each month providing the homeless in Los Angeles with free dental care.
World Team Foundation is an organization committed to fighting human trafficking, primarily in the nation of Thailand.
Hollywood Dreamz is dedicated to improving children's lives by providing crucial support for children's education, arts, and character development programs in the greater Los Angeles area.
And although there were too many booths to summarize here, LAist did have a few favorites:
Thinker Clothing is fashion for people who love science, technology, engineering and math. For anyone who's ever bought a boyfriend a motherboard for Christmas (am I the only one?), these accessories and t-shirts are perfect. It's also one of the go-to companies of choice when it comes to outfitting the actors on The Big Bang Theory.
Dara Ettinger was on hand (so to speak) with her eye-catching geode rings. Her jewelry is fun, and definitely a conversation-starter!
Artist Steve Kaufman worked closely with Andy Warhol back in the Factory days, and people love him for his pop art as much as they do for his extensive charity work (see photo gallery for some examples of his work).
Lalo Fuentes is an LA-based personal trainer who has created a workout DVD called “LaloFit” that includes both English and Spanish language options.
MyFlowerGuy.com provided the gorgeous floral arrangements for the event.
I.C.O.N. is a Chatsworth-based hair care company that creates vegan products that try to save bad hair—and save lives. The company has launched a worldwide "Cure for a Cause" campaign to help find a cure for cancer. In addition, they are donating money from sales of their replenishing spray to the Stop Cancer non-profit group.