“I thought this was going to be easy,” Ben Stiller recalls with a laugh, of putting together Artists for Haiti, an ambitious art auction to be held at Christie’s in New York on September 22 (a gala hosted by Bill Clinton will take place the following evening), which will aid Haitian children affected by last year’s earthquake. He quickly realized he would need some help navigating the contemporary art market, so he enlisted New York gallerist David Zwirner, who drew promises of new work from more than 25 major artists, among them John Currin, Dan Flavin, and Marlene Dumas (whose portrait of her mother, left, goes on the block). “What really got me,” says Zwirner of Haiti, “is the poverty I encountered—and it’s only an hour flight from Miami, where the art world gets together every year to sip champagne.”

Photo: Courtesy of Marlene Dumas and David Zwirner, New York