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Louis-Dreyfus Unlocks Gallery for Bedford 2020

MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. — Art collector William Louis-Dreyfus opened his private gallery in Mount Kisco to a lucky few on Sunday for a showing to benefit environmental group Bedford 2020.

The organization’s vision is to make Bedford a sustainable town, said Senior Vice President and Treasurer Olivia Farr. More measurably, Bedford 2020 is leading a coordinated effort to reduce home, school and business production of greenhouse gases by 20 percent by the year 2020.

Louis-Dreyfus said that reducing greenhouse gases is “an important step for communities to take, not to say essential.” The French born lawyer and businessman has been a resident of Bedford Hills since 1970. His daughter is Emmy-winning actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who is best known for playing the role of Elaine on “Seinfeld.”

Five hundred works from his collection of 3,500 pieces were selected for the show at the Mount Kisco space.

“It’s a living collection,” said Gallery Manager Mary Lou Costello.

Inside the private gallery are a number of portraits of Louis-Dreyfus himself, including a watercolor by mixed media artist Red Grooms. Also on view were oils by Italian artist Leonardo Cremonini, paintings by outsider artist Bill Traylor and works by 20th century sculptor Jean Dubuffet.

This is only the second time Louis-Dreyfus has opened his personal art gallery to the public in support of a cause he believes in, the last time in October for a fundraiser benefitting Bedford Hills Free Library. Viewers were treated to a collection both extensive and diverse, which was preceded by a reception of wine and hors d’oeuvres.

Karen Davis, a docent at the Katonah Museum of Art, and her husband Dan, came to take a look at the treasures on display at the Louis-Dreyfus gallery.

“I like to see other people’s collections,” Davis said.

Bedford 2020 Program Director Midge Iorio said that the group puts on a wide range of events to engage the interest of all different segments of the Bedford community.

The group, which has been championed by Bedford Supervisor Lee V.A. Roberts, successfully achieved its fundraising goal Sunday through tickets sales, corporate donations and private gifts.

$4,000 worth of energy-saving raffle prizes were donated by local businesses, including weekend use of an electric car manufactured by Curtis Instruments, home energy upgrade discounts valued at $300 and $500 and a truckload of compost generated by Bedford’s own Rainbeau Ridge Farm.

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