Lily Kwong, Cleo Wade. Photo by BFA.
Zani Gugelmann. Photo by BFA.
Ghada Amer. Photo by BFA.
At each of the hundred-plus table settings at the Museum of Art and Design’s annual dinner last night sat a small vial of absinthe with a tiny note attached: “delight.” The theme of this year’s gala (sponsored by Roger Vivier) was “The Garden of Earthly Delights,” taking inspiration from Hieronymus Bosch’s wild garden triptych, and as such, the Putnam & Putnam-designed centerpieces featured poppies and mushrooms mixed in with the peonies and moss. Inside a Neo-Federal townhouse on the Upper East Side, a multi-storied “Tree of Life” wound its way up the spiral staircase, displaying birds, butterflies and – if you looked closely – snakes. On the second floor, guests including Lily Kwong, Sofia Sanchez de Betak, Zoe Buckman, Cleo Wade, Martha Hunt and Zani Gugelmann (doing double duty with her own dinner at Barneys) ate Pointy Snout Caviar and sipped champagne before being herded into the dining room. Just before the main course, the feminist artist Ghada Amer was honored by museum trustee Mike De Paola, whose a fan both professionally and personally. “I remember when I bought my first Ghada piece,” he said. “It was at Art Basel. There was a little Basel-like scuffle–and I won.”