Area Redux

The famous eighties nightclub rises again


Cleo Wade, Jeremy Kost, and Mia Moretti   
more photos

"I'm leaving—it's reaching critical mass in there," Glenn O'Brien said as he made his way out of The Hole gallery on the Bowery last night. Indeed, the art and fashion sets had turned out in full force to relive the wild days of New York's iconic Area nightclub, which has been re-created as an art installation for the week. (The exhibit accompanies the new 368-page book Area: 1983-1987 by the club's co-owners Eric Goode and Jennifer Goode.)

Inside, guests such as Jeffrey Deitch—who helmed the art project along with Hole founder Kathy Grayson—Mario Sorrenti, and Princess Gloria von Thurn und Taxis discovered artwork made for the nightclub by the likes of Keith Haring, Andy Warhol, and Chuck Close. They also found a re-creation of those infamous unisex bathrooms (which also doubled as the bar).

"People would do drugs and have sex in those bathrooms, but to be honest, you didn't even really have to go in the bathroom to do that," said photographer Patrick McMullan, after pausing to check out an old portrait series of himself, Haring, and Jean-Michel Basquiat. "I sure hope no one tries to use the plumbing in these bathrooms, because it doesn't work," added Eric Goode. As for the naked performance artists running around the party, Goode said, "I don't know anything about those, I'm as surprised as you are."

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