Between the McEvoy family’s support of the arts and their orchard and vineyard holdings, art and agriculture share a prominent place at the McEvoy Ranch table. So it was fitting that Nion McEvoy was honored on Saturday February 2nd with the inaugural Di Rosa award, presented at a gala affair at the di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art, surrounded by Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyards in Carneros. The Center was founded by the late Rene di Rosa, a vintner and art collector whose life had interesting parallels and connections to Nion and his late mother Nan. Di Rosa started his career as a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, founded by Nion’s great-grandfather and from which Nan retired as chairwoman of the board before starting McEvoy Ranch. Di Rosa began collecting works of Bay Area artists, particularly those of artists serving as faculty at UC Davis, where di Rosa studied viticulture. One of those artists, Wayne Thiebaud, was a close friend of Mrs. McEvoy’s, and examples of his work hang at the Ranch.
Nion’s significant contributions in support of the arts were celebrated at the affair on Saturday; Center Executive Director Robert Sain listed the numerous organizations he supports as trustee or board member, including SFJazz, SFMOMA, Aperture, Smithsonian American Art Museum, SFFilm, and the McEvoy Foundation for the Arts in San Francisco which showcases contemporary artists in conjunction with Nion’s collection. Sharing the award was fellow honoree Meghann Riepenhoff, a cyanotype photographer whose work Nion collects.
Read more about the award and the gala at the San Francisco Chronicle.