For Party’s Sake

We can’t shake the feeling that we’re missing the punchline of Rob Pruitt’s First Annual Art Awards—after all, this is a man whose most notable artistic contribution is Cocaine Buffet. The champagne bottle/lightbulb statuette didn’t help either, even if it was inspired by legendary trickster Marcel Duchamp. Yet the Calvin Klein-sponsored festivities carried on completely straight-faced last night at the Guggenheim Museum, drawing many an art-world heavyweight and obligatory celebrity, neither of whom are likely to turn down a free dinner, regardless of how dubious the pretense.

Guests included the dapper James Franco (apparently a fledgling collector), a surprisingly polished Nate Lowman (sans Olsen arm candy) and Hope Atherton (in a suitably conceptual get-up). They hobnobbed with art aficionados (and Francisco Costa devotees) Julianne Moore and Kylie Minogue. A stoic Jeffrey Deitch rolled in accompanied by performance artist Kembra Pfahler, who showed up naked as usual, save for a dusting of blue powder.

We were glad to see Ryan Trecartin walk away with the award for Best New Artist, if only so he could show off his vintage Cross Colors ensemble. We confess, however, the other winners included a bunch of people we’ve never heard of, for doing a bunch of arty things we feel guilty for not making the time to go see. But in all, not a bad excuse to throw a party, even if it feels like one of Francesco Vezzoli’s elaborate hoaxes. 

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