Partner Spotlight: Alex Beard - - Partner Spotlight: Alex Beard -

Partner Spotlight: Alex Beard

Whether it’s colors woven on a canvas or flavors mingling in a dish, creativity takes many forms and many meanings. For some, it is simply a hobby. For others, it’s a form of self-expression and therapy. To New Orleans-based artist Alex Beard, art is more than a lens through which to see the world. It is a tool to help transform it.

As we celebrate 20 years of the Emeril Lagasse Foundation, we wanted to catch up with our longtime friend Alex. He reflected on his painting “For the Love of the Pig”, that for 10 years served as the iconic image of Boudin, Bourbon & Beer, and he shared inspiration about his upcoming collaboration to be unveiled at Carnivale du Vin.


“I was always intrigued by art and, in a way, I never really had a second choice,” Alex shared. He has always felt sure of the path he’s tread. “This is what I did from the beginning, and it’s what I’m still doing.”

Alex’s relationship with art began in his earliest years, growing up in 1970s New York City in a childhood home that served as a breeding ground for artistic inspiration. It was here that young Alex acted as a “fly on the wall” around great artists of the time, “Some of which you’ve heard of and some of which you haven’t.” These “some” included household regulars like Andy Warhol and Truman Capote.

Though artists were influential in guiding Alex to his gift, those closest to him at home would help shape how he used it. Raised in a family that fostered philanthropy in tandem with creativity, Alex’s mother (a magazine editor) and father (a staffer for Bobby Kennedy) taught the importance of using one’s skills with purpose.

“Because I was raised in this dual household,” shared Alex, “I could see the creative path and one where you try to help people less fortunate than you are. In my case, it was through the lens of conservation.”

And through that lens, Alex has built the Watering Hole Foundation, a charity committed to protecting endangered wildlife and preserving the environment that has served as inspiration for his unique style of art. One way his charity accomplishes this is through educational programs both locally and abroad.

Fueled by a curiosity about this world, its people, culture, and creatures, Alex has traveled far and wide, collecting stories and documenting his journeys through paint on canvas. Over the years, he has witnessed the collapse of many naturally beautiful landscapes in real-time. Rather than moving on once his paint has dried, he has taken action, using the art he created in these locations to raise funds that protect the lands that inspired the work.


“My job as an artist,” Alex shared, “is to perceive universal truths and relate them to the public, to help them see their surroundings and better understand themselves and the place in which they live.”

In a post-Katrina New Orleans, this mindset and mission aligned Alex and the Emeril Lagasse Foundation. Our programs overlapped, and the space was just right for collaboration. When we approached him to create the original “For the Love of the Pig” for Boudin, Bourbon & Beer, Alex was happy to team up for the project.

Since then, Alex admits that the work has taken on a life of its own. A few years after “For the Love of the Pig,” Alex created another iconic piece “For the Love of the Sailfish” to kick off the launch of Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Line, Vine & Dine Fundraising Weekend. This multi-colored beauty has become a symbol of an extraordinary weekend of fishing and philanthropy.

“I encouraged the Foundation to use the images I created for as many purposes as they could,” shared Alex. “If they were successful, then that would be doing good in the world…and it’s been a great relationship from day one.”

Over the years, Alex has donated original pieces for our auctions that are inspired by his travels abroad. All his artwork is created using his signature style, abstract naturalism, and has raised tens of thousands of dollars for The Emeril Lagasse Foundation and The Watering Hole Foundation.

With the celebration of the Foundation’s 20th anniversary, Alex decided that the timing was just right to revisit the painting that started this relationship. He garnered inspiration by going back to the roots of the original pig.

“My hope is that the lasting impact is continued cooperation, that the ethos of collaborative work stays alive and strong because, ultimately, that’s what makes our communities successful,” said Alex.

His newest work, titled “The Pig Revisited” or “Pig 2: Return of the Porker” will be unveiled during the auction at Carnivale du Vin, the foundation’s annual gala and fundraising evening.

We are so proud to work with this creative and compassionate partner, Alex Beard. We look forward to the art, outreach, and action we can inspire together along the way.

For more information on Alex Beard’s “The Pig Revisited” or how to place a proxy bid on this celebratory piece, please contact