Where the Art Is

Parties for Nicola Vassell's new exhibition, Black Eye, and Dustin Yellin's Pioneer Works


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With Frieze around the corner, the art world was out in full force this weekend. First up on Friday night was Black Eye, Nicola Vassell's new exhibition. "It started with Thelma Golden's 1994 show, Black Male," Vassell told at a jam-packed (and about 20 degrees hotter-than-hell) exhibition space in Tribeca. "I thought about how controversial and at the same time how seminal that show was in the art world: It basically birthed the whole notion of the post-black generation." Twenty years on, some things have changed, others haven't—an actuality that Vassell, formerly a director at Deitch Projects and Pace Gallery, explores in the show. Bringing together twenty-six established and emerging black artists (from Nick Cave to LaToya Ruby Frazier to Steve McQueen), Black Eye looks at black experience in a post-Obama moment world. After the opening, André Saraiva, Johan Lindeberg, and Waris Ahluwalia were among the guests at a dinner at All Good Things.

On Sunday, revelers decamped to Dustin Yellin's Pioneer Works in Red Hook, Brooklyn, for the first annual Village Fête fundraiser. "If there's a boat trip involved, you know it's going to be a good party," said one attendee. And from the ferry ride to the family-style meal courtesy of The Fat Radish to performances from Ariel Pink and MGMT, Yellin delivered. The Pioneer Street warehouse on Red Hook's waterfront was acquired by the artist nearly three years ago, underwent a gut renovation, and is now a combination studio, education, and gallery space that lists Liv Tyler and Maggie Gyllenhaal among its supporters. The event raised dollars for the sight's educational programs and upkeep. As the sun began to set, Yellin remarked, "There's been so many highlights since we started that it's like the sun has been in front of our moon. It's really all about how when people come together, they can change the world."

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