On Wednesday evening, Chef Andrew Carmellini opened the doors of his brand new restaurant, Little Park at the Smyth Hotel, a day early for a cause close to his heart: The Lunchbox Fund, a non-profit that provides daily meals to 12 million children in South Africa. Founder Topaz Page-Green arrived at the foundation’s annual Fall Benefit Dinner and Auction dressed head-to-toe in Prada—the fashion house sponsored the event—and accompanied by two of her co-chairs, Chuck Close and Aimee Mullins. “We provided the information about what was happening and it very much appealed to Mrs. Prada,” said Page-Green, a South African-born former model who began the charity in 2005. “That is one of the most gratifying things, when the work that you do is noticed by someone as elegant and well respected as she is.”
A starry crowd including Helena Christensen, Mickey Sumner, and an expecting Liv Tyler joined Page-Green for fireside cocktails before making their way to Carmellini’s candlelit dining room for a special three-course menu. Fueled by bites of his chocolate rye cake and cinnamon toast ice cream, guests bid against each other as Paddle 8’s Alexander Gilkes auctioned off the four live lots including a Jordan Wolfson print, which went for almost double its asking price. “Nobody, should see his or her work auctioned off—it’s like taking a cow on a guided tour of a slaughter house,” joked Close, who hid under a napkin when Gilkes auctioned off the artist’s photographic diptych of the evening’s host. “But I do it for the right cause.”
Photos: A Dinner for The Lunchbox Fund
Aimee Mullins and Topaz Page-Green. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Mickey Sumner. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Helena Christensen and Liv Tyler. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Chuck Close. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Trudie Styler and Sting. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Billy Crudup. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Chuck Close’s diptych. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Alexander Gilkes and Maria Baibakova. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.
Salman Rushdie and Michael Mills. Photograph by BFAnyc.com.