An explosive gala

Monday, April 18, 2011
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BOMB magazine celebrated it’s 30th Anniversary on Friday at Capitale on Bowery.

For those unfamiliar with BOMB (as I admittedly was prior to the invitation) founder and editor of this creative mag Betsy Sussler put it best when she said: “BOMB delivers the artist’s voice. By making the artist’s voice an essential component of cultural discourse, BOMB humanizes intellectual ideas and gives context to their origins.”

As one of the most respected voices in contemporary art and literature, BOMB’s gala drew some of the most respected names in the creative world: Ellsworth Kelly, Betsy Baker, Shawn Wallace (think Mr. Hall from Clueless and understand our excitement), Deborah Eisenberg, Klaus Biesenbach, Richard Phillips and Josephine Meckseper.

The gala kicked off with cocktails while guests perused through the gallery (where we spotted Kim Cattrall carefully eyeing a few pieces) and bid on selected works donated by contemporary artists such as Rochelle Feinstein, Michael BallouRobert Mangold, Josh Blackwell, Sebastiaan Bremer, Emilie Clark, Stanley Whitney and Carroll Dunham.

Dinner was served at 8 where honorees were presented with a “Pink Bomb” created by Tom Otterness. Performance artist Marina Abramovic was toasted by distinguished critic Arthur C. Danto; director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Richard Armstrong by painter Mary Heilmann; Ellsworth Kelly toasted Art in America’s editor for almost 40 years, Elizabeth Baker, and the best toast of the night (in our opinion) was given to author Francine Prose by the hysterical Michael Cunningham.

AVENUEinsider was seated with a mix of creative types including: Madeline Weinrib (who designed the decor of the event), Rachel Hovnanian (who gushed about her “fun house” project in Belgium- and now we’re dying to check out more of her work), Michele Gerber Klein (Co-Chair and a lovely host who immediately made us feel welcome) and Fabiola Arias (a 23-year-old designer whose eveningwear has been displayed in Neiman Marcus and worn by socials like Gerber Klein, Tinsley Mortimer and Yaz Hernandez).

Late in the night, we chatted with Derek Blasberg (who was hoping to catch up with Cunningham, smitten by his speech) about the event and –seeing as if was a Friday night– less “intellectual” things like the dessert tray, our thoughts about New Jersey and Blasberg’s excitement for the Ricky Martin concert (don’t judge us).  Livin’ la vida BOMB.


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by Ben DiamondPhotographed by Billy Farrall