Generation W Likes to Party
If there’s been a venue theme thus far during Fashion Week, it would be “take me to the river”: Marc Jacobs is returning to Chelsea Piers for his Marc by Marc Jacobs show; Alexander Wang took over piers 94 and 17 for his spring 2014 show and after-party, respectively; and Opening Ceremony has launched a week-long extravaganza on the Hudson water front.
W Magazine took a different tact, hitting the Financial District Monday night, when it hosted cocktails, along with the photographer Craig McDean and Jaeger-LeCoultre, for its Generation W story of up-and-coming talent in the October issue. Not exactly a nocturnal stomping ground, as the line of black SUVs snaking through deserted streets attested, but the destination, 20 Exchange Place, proved well worth the trek.
Built in 1929 as the City Bank-Farmers building, the Art Deco-style building was intended to surpass the Empire State building in height. While it failed on that front (it’s currently being developed into a combo of residential rentals and office space), its English oak, nickel and marble (45 varieties!) lobby was a majestic backdrop to fashion, Hollywood and art’s hottest stars.
That point was driven home by a gorgeous asteroid video installation by the artist Jennifer Steinkamp, that was projected onto the vaulted ceiling. (Coincidentally, the watches on display were from Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Celestial collection. Talk about kismet.)
“If you stare at it, it’s like being on mushrooms,” said one guest as she watched the rocks collide overhead.
Other collisions were occurring across the room: Karen Elson, Anouck Lepere and Frankie Rayder made something of a supermodel sandwich; Andre Balazs caught up with Angela Lindvall; Valentino honcho Carlos Souza gushed over Michelle Dockery, and the young photographer Michael Avedon made a beeline for Renzo Rosso.
“I used to work in fashion, but I couldn’t handle it,” said another guest, surveying the scene. “I do war photography now. At least there you know where the bullets are coming from.”
Perhaps, but there was nothing but love in this particular room. Especially for the collection of lithe young ladies frolicking from admirer to admirer.
“I feel badly for all these models,” said one fellow with a healthy dose of sarcasm. “They don’t get enough attention at fashion parties.”
Well, at least those with less obviously glowing prospects in their futures could sit down with tarot card reader, Tanwi Nandini, who had a corner station. You know, so they could see what was written in the stars. Get it? I know.