If you ever imagined what an art party in a fancy Upper East Side townhouse — more specifically, a Paul Rudolph-designed modernist townhouse formerly owned by Halston and Gianni Agnelli — would be like, it would probably have gone down exactly like the Artlist and Champagne Pommery Christmas Carnival on Monday night. The online contemporary fine art marketplace commissioned a bunch of well-known artists to install shoppable installations in every room and corner of the spacious multi-story townhouse — including Grey Area x Robert Lazzarini's porny jigsaw puzzles tucked away in a mood-lit bedroom, fashion party regulars the Bumbys typing out what they think of your outfit, Nobutaka Aozaki selling smartly-packaged, discarded cigarette butts collected off the streets and a blind-folded (kinda creepy) Santa whose lap you probably don't want to sit on.
Of course, the crowd was just as art-house-y as you can imagine: two men wearing silver liquid leggings and no shirts or shoes, well-funded-looking 20-somethings, quite a few Scott Disick lookalikes, lots of French people, adults dressed as elves and too many adult men wearing beanies. Of course, there was a handful of art-appreciating bold names, too, including Princess Eugenie (you know, Prince William's cousin and therefore cousin-in-law to America's obsession Kate Middleton). HRH didn't show up with security or anything — how refreshing — and she graciously put on the crime scene booties organizers requested guests wear to protect the precious townhouse carpeting. The Princess had a legitimate reason to be there: She works for New York-based online art auction house Paddle8 and just returned from Art Basel, where all the cool fashion and art people went.
"I think it's one of the perfect marriages. Fashion, art coming together is something that was always going to happen," Princess Eugenie said about fashion taking over Art Basel. "I think thats the same with food and music, all on this stage, where all these cultures are coming together. [Paddle8] had that Grace Coddington sale on our site — and we're a contemporary art auction site — but we also have a mix of fashion, so I think it's really cool that we're moving in that direction."
"Thank you," she then politely concluded, as she shooed me away. "That's enough."
Princess Eugenie wasn't the only person in the room who's embracing the art-meets-fashion intermingling, as contemporary artist Dustin Yellin created prints for Misha Nonoo's spring 2015 collection — and graced the runway wearing one of the dresses. So what inspired that collaboration? "Because when I'm not busy being naked, I want to be robed," he told me, in between puffs of his cigarette (I wonder if he donated his used butts to Aozaki upstairs). "Inside curtains of velvet. Inside sheets of silk." Sure, makes complete sense. Although, Yellin seems to prefer being unrobed, or partially anyway. Shortly thereafter, he decided to fully drop trou, undies and all. I'm going to file the full-frontal next day photos under: things I can never unsee.
Model Soo Joo Park — and her always cool head of hair — was also on hand to celebrate. "Fashion can be a form of art," she said, although she missed the Art Basel bacchanal this year. "Like all the collaborations that different brands are doing with artists always make a good impression. So I love the Raf Simons/Sterling Ruby collaboration they did. Richard Prince and Louis Vuitton has always been a memorable one as well."
With Christmas next week and the New Year right around the corner, that can only mean one thing: Fashion Week is imminent. Does Park have her game plan ready yet? "Well, I'm going to have a holiday first," she laughed. "I'm going to enjoy myself first and then I'll slowly get [to it]. I haven't thought about that yet!" Oops, sorry to be the holiday bash buzzkill. Art party foul.
All photos courtesy of Guest of a Guest