FUR FOR ALL?: Despite being the face of Blackglama’s most recent ads, Elle Macpherson turned up at the Vogue party at The Double Seven in her honor on Wednesday night with nary a tuft of fur. Instead, she opted for black leather Alexander McQueen.
“We shot the campaign in London,” she said between bites of satay amid a crowd of partygoers that included Eugenia Silva, Alejandro Santo Domingo, Bob Colacello, Josh Charles, Roopal Patel and Olivia Chantecaille. “I didn’t want to be away from my kids. I haven’t done something like this in a while. I’ve really been focusing on my own company [lingerie and beauty products].”
Her children probably won’t catch a glimpse of the sultry campaign, though. “They don’t see fashion magazines. They don’t watch television. My younger son thinks my whole job is getting hair and makeup done.”
WHAM BAM: The Brooklyn Academy of Music celebrated the launch of the 2005 Next Wave Festival on Tuesday night with a performance by the Brazilian dance company Grupo Corpo. Even though Armani sponsored the event, apparently, clothing was optional on stage: One man performed in the nude. “He looked like a lobster,” Eugenia Silva said of the dancer’s primal crawl across the stage.
At a dinner at Skylight Studios following the performance, while a crowd perused the Mark Seliger photographs up for auction, Glenn Close went out of her way to compliment several members of the troupe. Squeezing the bicep of dancer Beto Venceslau, she said, “You were so strong. It was almost like watching Cirque du Soleil.”
At a nearby table was French legend Isabelle Huppert, who is starring in BAM’s production of the notorious play “4.48 Psychose.” Huppert said she didn’t mind having to stand stock still for her two-hour performance. “I could stand for another two hours,” she said. “The only bad thing is, I can’t scratch my eyes if they are itchy.”
VALENTINO’S NIGHT OUT: Tuesday night was anything but quiet for Valentino. The night kicked off with cocktails at his Madison Avenue boutique, where fans mobbed the designer like a superstar (which also happens to be the honor he received Thursday at Fashion Group International’s Night of Stars gala). Among those greeting him were Jamee Gregory, Susan Gutfreund, Carolyne Roehm, Charlene de Ganay and Jill Roosevelt. After cocktails, Valentino, his business partner and company chairman, Giancarlo Giammetti, and others headed over to Daniel, where the Venetian Heritage gave a dinner in the designer’s honor that drew the likes of Anne Bass, Princess Firyal, Deeda Blair, Allison Sarofim, Larry Gagosian, Pauline Pitt, Jennifer Creel and Prince Dimitri of Yugoslavia.
SHENSTONE’S MOMENT: British artist Claire Shenstone has stumbled into her fair share of good luck. At the tender age of 16, she was asked to pose as the iconic image on Andy Warhol’s “Chelsea Girls” movie poster. Next, she was “discovered” by future mentor Francis Bacon at her 1979 M.A. degree show at the Royal College of Arts and palled around with the likes of David Bowie. Fast-forward to 1998, when legendary arts patrons Sir Robert and Lady Lisa Sainsbury, the namesake family of the British food retailer, took a liking to her paintings at a London exhibit. Since then, Lady Sainsbury has taken the artist under her well-feathered wing. In fact, she secured Shenstone’s first U.S. solo show, which opened at Koichi Yanagi Oriental Fine Arts Thursday.
Shenstone, who has preserved her resemblance to Penelope Tree but only admits to “over 50,” said she is “excited, terrified and anxious” at her first American retrospective. None of her work shies away from the abject reality of the human body, but her media varies greatly, from Bacon-esque oil portraits to tiny glue and wire sculptures. Shenstone vehemently rejects any comparisons to Bacon, however. “The things that Francis taught me had to do with the use of paint and his freedom of expression,” she insists. “Anyone who copies his painting would be stupid.”
A GOOD TIME: Donald Trump may have already given his wife a big diamond ring, but perhaps he should be considering a big diamond watch, as well. Melania Trump was wearing Vacheron Constantin’s $600,000 44-carat Lady Kalla silhouette at the Swiss watch brand’s 250th anniversary party she hosted at the New York Public Library on Monday, and the sparkler turned almost as many heads as the model herself. Although Trump made just a brief appearance, the soiree raged on well after its scheduled ending time of 10 p.m., with some 400 guests bumping elbows in the library’s foyer. Guests included the evening’s honorees, Isiah Thomas, Eric Ripert and Albert Maysles, as well as artist duo Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Leonard Lauder, Olivia Chantecaille, Tara Subkoff and Patricia Field.