Stephen Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park with George closes with the powerful line, “There are only two worthwhile things to leave behind when you depart this world of ours – children and art.”
We have been fortunate to enjoy beautiful and important works of art throughout our lives. Now, we want to ensure that our children have access to the same beauty. Art like music, theater, and dance must be passed on to our children, just as historic paintings and sculptures are already preserved.
For this purpose, we are pleased to announce the Kimmel Center’s Honickman Family Society, a group of planned giving donors. We are proud of the mark that our family will leave on Philadelphia. We are proud of Philadelphia’s museums, Jewish programs, medical centers and educational facilities. We have advocated for important issues such as gun reform, breaking the cycle of poverty, and fighting hunger. We view the Kimmel Center as another important Philadelphia structure worthy of preservation. We have enjoyed the visual art and performances for decades and are delighted to know that the Honickman Family Society will work to safeguard these for generations to come.
Since the dawn of modern civilization, art has been a dynamic means of communication. Art has defined communities, preserved history, told stories, commented on society and provided a vital outlet of expression. Egyptians adorned sarcophagi with paintings and gems; Romans designed buildings with unique columns and statues. What will define the culture of our times? How will that be communicated to future generations? In hundreds of years, what pictures and statues and buildings will be in history books?
We refuse to wonder how history will define us. We must actively shape our culture.
As proud Philadelphia natives, we have enjoyed the art presented by the Kimmel Center for more than a decade. We’ve experienced Broadway in our backyard, relished each season of the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra and appreciated events in the beautiful roof garden. In creating the Honickman Family Society, we want to ensure that the Kimmel Center will continue to educate, inspire and delight audiences for generations to come.
In addition to the important vision for our society, this nature of giving is unique and representative of the concept of legacy. Rather than give a traditional donation, we have chosen to bequeath funds to the Kimmel Center in our wills. As is the essence of art, there is a sense of wonder through endowment that accompanies gifting a future generation rather than your own – the power of a gift that outlives oneself.
As we prepare this everlasting gift, we invite others to join us in this effort. The Honickman Family Society is, indeed, intended to be a community effort, bringing in diverse members to protect all forms of art. As art defines a community or era, the community must work to protect and preserve art.
Philadelphia is renowned for its rich history – we want to ensure the city is equally recognized for great art. The Honickman Family Society will work to preserve The Kimmel Center’s iconic buildings, and maintain facilities for performing art organizations. It will expand audience reach and diversity, enrich arts education and focus the world’s attention on the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA).
The Kimmel Center’s Honickman Family Society will be an impactful legacy for our family, our community and the arts.
Lynne Honickman is an artist and writer, committed to the arts and social activism. Harold Honickman is Chairman of the Honickman Group. The two are lifelong Philadelphia residents. For more information on the Kimmel Center’s Honickman Family Society for planned giving email firstname.lastname@example.org