Chairman's Evening

December 9, 2019

On Monday evening, December 9, Michael Chabon, The MacDowell Colony’s Chairman of the Board, sat down with multimedia artist, composer, and performer Laurie Anderson and best-selling novelist, poet, and educator Margaret Atwood at Glasshouses Chelsea for a witty and incisive conversation about creativity. This intimate event truly exemplifies our mission to shine a light on the impact that art can have on society. Hosting 125 people, the evening provides a warm year end gathering, rounding out a season of arts and literature events in New York.

Scroll down for video and a slideshow of the event that brings together two iconic artists of our time to engage in the kind of high-octane discussions heard at the dinner table at the Colony every day. Read our press release here.

To learn more about this event or to become a sponsor, please contact Brett Evan Solomon at events@macdowellcolony.org or 212.535.9690

Scenes from the evening

Watch the video of The Chairman's Evening

Laurie Anderson

Portrait by Ebru Yildiz

Laurie Anderson is one of America’s most renowned – and daring – creative pioneers. She is best known for her multimedia stage presentations and innovative use of technology. As writer, director, visual artist, and vocalist she has created groundbreaking works that span the worlds of art, theater, and experimental music. Her recording career, launched by “O Superman” in 1981, includes the soundtrack to her feature film Home of the Brave (1985) and Life on a String (2001). Landfall, a collaboration with Kronos Quartet, was released last year. From being appointed NASA’s first artist-in-residence in 2002 to having her archive on a 15-year rotation at Mass MoCA beginning in 2017, Anderson’s visual and multimedia work has been presented and performed at film festivals and in museums around the world, and she has published seven books. Some of Anderson’s honors include the 2007 Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize, the Pratt Institute’s Honorary Legends Award in 2011, and the Yoko Ono Courage Award for the Arts in 2016. In addition to making art in New York, she continues to work with the arts activist group The Federation, which she co-founded in 2017.

Margaret Atwood

Portrait by Liam Sharp

Margaret Atwood, whose work has been published in more than forty-five countries, is the author of more than 50 books of fiction, poetry, critical essays, and graphic novels. Her latest novel, The Testaments, was published in September 2019. It is the long-awaited sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, now an award-winning TV series. Her other works of fiction include Cat’s Eye, finalist for the 1989 Booker Prize; Alias Grace, which won the Giller Prize in Canada and the Premio Mondello in Italy; The Blind Assassin, winner of the 2000 Booker Prize; The MaddAddam Trilogy; and Hag-Seed. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade, the Franz Kafka International Literary Prize, the PEN Center USA Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Los Angeles Times Innovator’s Award. She lives in Toronto.

Michael Chabon

Portrait by Benjamin Tice Smith

Michael Chabon is a MacDowell Fellow (14x, 1996 – 2017) and the Chairman of The MacDowell Colony Board of Directors and the bestselling and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the novels The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, Wonder Boys, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, Summerland, The Final Solution, The Yiddish Policeman's Union, Gentlemen of the Road, Telegraph Avenue, and Moonglow; the short story collections A Model World and Werewolves in Their Youth; and the essay collections Maps and Legends, Manhood for Amateurs, and Pops: Fatherhood in Pieces. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife, novelist Ayelet Waldman, and their children.

Past Chairman's Evenings