Art Bubbles

The New Museum takes its annual gala to Wall Street


Lazaro Hernandez, Lisa Phillips, and Jack McCollough   
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It's hard for the Bowery's contemporary-art institution, the New Museum, to throw a party in a space more impressive than its own Sky Room, which overlooks lower Manhattan, but Cipriani Wall Street was a close second for its annual Spring Gala last night. Jenna Lyons thought the usually buttoned-up Financial District space was a great place for a downtown art party: "That's what I like about the New Museum: They never pick the obvious choice."

The museum transformed the cavernous Greek Revival building by filling it with forty-four seven-foot white spheres suspended in the air. With a global helium shortage—who knew?—museum deputy director Karen Wong told it was no easy feat. And although one John Baldessari painting raised over $200,000 in the auction, Calvin Klein's Francisco Costa really only had eyes for those balloons. "I wish they had auctioned them off! They would have been perfect in my garden, for summertime."

Proenza Schouler's Lazaro Hernandez toyed with the idea of sucking the helium out of said balloons, but then again, maybe Cipriani wasn't the appropriate venue for such shenanigans. After all, he and Jack McCollough were honorary chairs of the evening. "We love the New Museum because it's near our office and makes for a quick trip," said McCollough. "We don't get out of the office much these days."

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