In recognition of their 30-year impact on the art, education and cultural life of Baltimore, Gary and Elana Vikan are serving as honorary co-chairs of the third annual Celebration of Art to benefit the Cylburn Arboretum Association. Celebration of Art takes place at Cylburn’s Vollmer Center Saturday, June 14 and Sunday June 15.
The Vikans have been devoted city residents for 30 years. With their two daughters they moved to Baltimore in 1984, when Gary began at the Walters Art Museum as chief curator/medieval curator. He later served for 18 years as the museum director before retiring in 2013. Elana’s 29-year career was at Roland Park Country School, where she taught Russian, French, and History of Art. She also retired in 2013.
“Through our professional lives, our neighborhood, and our children, Gary and I formed a web of friendships,” says Elana. “That web is united by a deep commitment to Baltimore and its treasures, treasures like The Walters and Cylburn. Where the tradition of Art Blooms at the Walters brings flowers to art, Celebration of Art at Cylburn brings art to flowers. In both instances, art and nature are interwoven to enhance each other, so that we can experience ‘luxe, calme, et volupté,’ Baudelaire’s ideal of luxury, serenity, and richness of life in his poem ‘L’Invitation au Voyage.’”