Alicia Keys charity to support "Africa Now" Exhibition

Published January 21st, 2010 - 11:57 GMT

Alicia Keys, the singer, songwriter, actress, author and philanthropist with a keen interest in Africa, has agreed that her charity ‘Keep a Child Alive’ will partner Bonhams VIP reception for the groundbreaking `Africa Now’ exhibition in New York on 9th March 2010.

The event is being sponsored by Afren plc, the African focused independent oil and gas exploration and production company with operations in Nigeria, Gabon, Congo Brazzaville, Cote d`Ivoire, Ghana and the Joint Development Zone of Nigeria – Sao Tome & Principe.

The subsequent auction will be the first commercial auction of African contemporary art ever to be held in the US, and features work by both new and established artists.

The VIP reception will be a “must attend” event for musical luminaries, art world opinion formers and anyone attracted by the prospect of securing works in this burgeoning market that has attracted the interest of Alicia Keys, Iman and Bono amongst others.

Giles Peppiatt, Director of African Art at Bonhams says: “We are greatly honoured that ‘Keep a Child Alive’ has agreed to partner at this event. Their credentials as a leading ambassador for African issues made them a natural choice to introduce this stunning collection of the best of contemporary African Art.”

In 2003, Leigh Blake and Alicia Keys founded ‘Keep a Child Alive’ (KCA), a non-profit organization dedicated to providing life-saving anti-retroviral treatment and surrounding care to children and families with HIV/AIDS in Africa and India.

"This organization is an emergency response to the deadly "treatment gap" that is destroying Africa." After returning from Africa, Keys was instilled with a renewed sense of purpose and urgency. Since its inception in 2003, ‘Keep a Child Alive’ has served more than 250,000 children and families affected by HIV/Aids in Africa and India.

Keys is also Host and Musical Director of Keep a Child Alive’s annual gala, The Black Ball, a benefit to raise funds for her organisation. Over the last six years, Keys has performed alongside key figures from the music industry such as Bono, Damien Marley, David Bowie, Lennie Kravitz, Angelique Kidjo, John Mayer, Paul Simon, Common, John Legend amongst others to raise funds for Keep a Child Alive’s lifesaving work.

"It's amazing to return to Africa and witness those who were so ill and near death, being brought back to life because of the medical care they were able to receive," she says. "Just knowing that your time and effort has helped build paediatric wings in hospitals and supply medicine to those who might not otherwise receive it, gives me a real sense of purpose."

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