Events and Parties
The Week in Art: MAD Channels Hieronymus Bosch, Seal Serenades the Whitney
Gala season continues.
Though it may seem that Armory Week and Frieze Week get all the action, the reality is that there is never a dull moment in the New York art world. From the East Side to the West Side, there’s always something happening at the city’s museums, galleries, and various event spaces. This week was no exception.
The Museum of Arts and Design‘s The Garden of Earthly Delights Gala Hosted by Roger Vivier
It was the height of luxury at the Americas Society on May 19, where the Museum of Arts and Design transformed the Neo-Federal Upper East Side townhouse into a lush forest to match the evening’s theme, inspired by Hieronymus Bosch‘s iconic The Garden of Earthly Delights.
Guests, who included artists Hank Willis Thomas and Zoe Buckman, model Tali Lennox, the Art Production Fund‘s Casey Fremont, and MAD chief curator Shannon R. Stratton, enjoyed Dom Perignon champagne, Pointy Snout caviar served on camel bone spoons, and a bottle of absinthe at each place setting, among other extravagant delights.
The evening honored artist Ghada Amer, who MAD trustee Mike De Paola praised for her work’s “fearless mix of politics, Arabic tradition, and Western liberalism.” A benefit auction featuring work by Amer, Sebastian Errazuriz, and others runs online through May 31.
Whitney Gala and Studio Party
A two-tiered party rocked the Whitney Museum of American Art on May 17, with the museum’s annual gala doubling as a one-year anniversary party for the institution’s Meatpacking home. The gala honored board of trustees member Robert J. Hurst, and welcomed guests including artists Chuck Close, Cindy Sherman, and Julian Schnabel, trustee Raymond Learsy (husband to the late Melva Bucksbaum), dealer Paula Cooper, New York Magazine critic Jerry Saltz, and fashion photographer Nigel Barker.
While the singer Seal performed hits like “Kiss from a Rose” at the seated dinner upstairs, a younger crowd was posing on the red carpet before entering the Studio Party in the lobby. The club-like atmosphere included cushy seating by Roche Bobois, a temporary tattoo bar featuring custom artist designs, and a 3-D photo booth.
Bruce High Quality Foundation‘s Annual Benefit Dinner and Art Auction
For the second year, Julian Schnabel welcomed guests to his famous towering pink residence, the Palazzo Chupi on West 11th Street. The May 18th event honored Andy Warhol superstar Jane Holzer, and counted “Girls” actress Jemima Kirke, collector Tiffany Zabludowicz, and artists Rashid Johnson and Marilyn Minter among its hosts. Also in attendance were artists Dustin Yellin and Zoe Buckman, model and artist Tali Lennox, actress Bernadette Peters, designer Zac Posen, and princess Gloria von Thurn und Taxis.
The night’s festivities included performances by Canadian singer Syv De Blare and jazz group Onyx Collective and a live auction of BHQF paintings.
Cocktail Reception for Tania Brassesco and Lazlo Passi Norberto‘s “Behind the Visible”
People shopping at Lord & Taylor on the evening of May 19 had no way of knowing that just a few stories above, a secret rooftop art opening was taking place. Italian photography duo Tania Brassesco and Lazlo Passi Norberto were unveiling their new photography series, “Behind the Visible,” a set of dreamy, fantasy-tinged images starring a red-headed model. The artists create careful sketches before planning each shoot, and each one is like “a scene from a movie,” Noberto told artnet News.
The event was hosted by Lisa and Richard Baker, owners of the Hudson’s Bay Company retail company, which operates Lord & Taylor. Guests included artist Emma Sulkowicz, designer Nanette Lepore, and noted canine art-lover, Pickle, and her owner, Katie Howard, who enjoyed vodka lemonade cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and a stunning view of the Midtown skyline.
Derrick Adams, “Culture Club” at Project for Empty Space Gallery at Gateway Center
Adams’ new solo exhibition, “Culture Club,” features a novel concept in contemporary art: paintings featuring black people simply enjoying themselves outdoors. At the opening on May 18, visitors laid out on a variety of large inflatable pool toys scattered around the floor. The walls featured colorful paintings of swimmers decked out in their best bikinis and trunks, as well as a series of mixed-media works secured to the wall—picnic tables, to be specific.
At the novel space, which is located on the second floor of the Gateway Center in Newark, New Jersey, “floaties are substitution for the museum or gallery bench,” Adams told artnet News.
Every Saturday afternoon starting next week, the artist wants to invite DJs to the space, to allow people to activate the exhibition—and play with the pool toys.
MoCADA Second Annual Masquerade Ball
It was a big night at the Brooklyn Academy of Music for the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art (MoCADA) on May 19. The spectacle caused founder Laurie Cumbo, now a New York City Council member, to reminisce about the institutions’s humble beginnings in a fourth floor walk-up Brooklyn brownstone. She joked that the crowd, who included artist Kehinde Wiley and musicians Maxwell and Estelle, had grown so fancy that she no longer recognized them—but that could have just been the masquerade theme, and the elaborate face paint masks artist Laolu Senbanjo, known for his contributions to Beyoncé‘s Lemonade, was creating for guests.
Harriette Rose Katz and the Chosen Few Present Michael Jurick, “INFRARED”
More than 200 guests turned out on May 16 for photographer Michael Jurick’s one-night only exhibition of his latest body of work, “Infrared,” which took place on the 21st floor of Glasshouses in West Chelsea, offered sweeping views of the Hudson River. The event showcased 12 photographs along with seven collaborative experimental artworks created with members of event collective the Chosen Few, which was founded by Harriette Rose Katz.
Jurick took us on a tour of the exhibition, explaining his process and travels over the three years it took to create the work, including our favorite piece, below, City of a Thousand Windows.
At the event, artnet News spotted former “Real Housewives of New York” cast member Aviva Drescher in the mix. We also hear that top art advisor Sandy Heller purchased two works for his own collection.
Cool Culture UnGala
Eschewing the traditional trappings of the snooty art gala, Cool Culture celebrated diversity and art at Phillips New York on May 18. The festivities, which included a live and silent art auction, benefit Cool Culture’s efforts to provide low-income New York city children free access to local museums and cultural institutions.
Guests included Phillips head Edward Dolman, the Jewish Museum‘s JiaJia Fei, curator Isolde Brielmaier, designers Ricky and Dee, and honorees Sanford Biggers and Ayqa Khan. Etch-a-Sketch artist Bryan Lee Madden, who made their commemorative plaques (frozen for posterity) was there creating additional work live throughout the night.
Arnold Lehman, the former Brooklyn Museum director and current Phillips senior advisor, a special guest speaker for the event, appeared to have a good evening. As the festivities wore down, artnet News spotted him entering the elevator, with smears of bright pink lipstick marking both cheeks.
50th Anniversary of the Lobmeyr Chandeliers
Lobmeyr, the family-run European manufacturer of crystal, celebrated the 50th anniversary of the debut of the Metropolitan Opera’s iconic chandeliers on May 15. Designed by Hans Harald Rath in 1966, the Met’s crystal comprises 32 chandeliers and over 300 wall fixtures.
Additional reporting by Eileen Kinsella, Kathleen Massara, and Rozalia Jovanovic.
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