At the Biennale des Antiquaires Paris, the 18th-century boiseries are installed, the parquet floors laid, and the silk wallpapers hung in temporary booths the world’s toniest dealers build to display their most precious goods. It all serves to create a high-drama mall, so heady with luxury and intrigue that powerhouse dealers like Ariane Dandois, Jean-Marie Rossi of Aveline and Axel Vervoordt show their wares there, and draw visitors like Bernard Arnault and his wife, Helene, Linda Wachner, Sydney Picasso, Lee Radziwill, Alber Elbaz, Daniella Luxembourg and Louise MacBain, who were all at the Carrousel du Louvre for the opening dinner on Sept. 13, hosted by Bernadette and Jacques Chirac and benefiting the Hôpitaux de Paris.
Meanwhile, on the other side of town, antiques lovers celebrated the more permanent — but equally sumptuous — glories of Galerie J. Kugel as brothers Alexis and Nicolas Kugel threw open the doors to their breathtaking new hôtel particulier on quai Anatole France.
This story first appeared in the September 27, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Guests including Ana Lucia de Teresa Addam and her husband, Nick Addam, Lisa Fine and Melissa Ulfane marveled at the interiors done by design powerhouse François-Joseph Graf and at the masterpieces housed on the gallery’s three floors. Then they danced till the wee hours on the gallery roof, where views stretch citywide from the Seine below to Sacre Coeur in the distance. The rooftop festivities proved rowdy enough to summon the police.
Nicolas’ Kugel’s wife, Natalie, dipped into the gallery’s stock to complete her look for the evening, sporting a sparkling pancake-sized Transylvanian belt buckle circa 1630 as a brooch. “Usually, I don’t dress like this,” she said. “But in this place you have to wear something kind of amazing.” The gallery has had hundreds of visitors every day since.