Last night, The New York Academy of Art hosted the Tribeca Ball in honor of Peter M. Brant. Presented by Van Cleef & Arpels, the evening celebrated emerging artists of the Academy, with proceeds supporting scholarships and public programing. Guests, including Mary Kate Olsen, Cindy Sherman, and Brooke Shields, were escorted to the fifth floor of the Academy's Tribeca location, where several models dripping in jewels lounged amongst royal blue cutouts of unicorns and exotic ferns.
"We tried to create this fairytale atmosphere, which at the same time was a very whimsical and funny night," said Nicolas Bos, CEO and Creative Director of Van Cleef & Arpels. And he succeeded—the space was transformed into an enchanted forest. Among the decoration, an accordionist in a ghostly white gown played a Lucite instrument while singing opera.
In spite of this opulence, however, it was the art produced by Academy faculty and students that truly stole the show. As guests drifted throughout the venue, magnificent canvases lined the walls, some of them still in the works. One faculty member, Robert Osti, spent the duration of his evening absorbed in a series of anatomical drawings with his hands stained by pastels. Meanwhile, students of the Academy stood in front of their own studios, where fresh paint splatters covered the floor. As the night progressed, hundreds of tiny red stickers appeared as indications of art that was sold.
By 9pm, guests were dining under a delicate web of twinkling lights. They stood from their seats to honor Brant, who expressed his passion for the Academy and recounted memories from his early 20s, when he first fell in love with the art world. "Meeting Andy [Warhol], he really taught me that beauty was everywhere," Brant said, evoking the late artist's famous mantra: "Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it." —Savannah O'Leary
With a special thanks to The Impossible Project, our photographer Carl J Asquini documented the evening.