Society / Featured Parties

The Dallas Art Fair Creates Early International Buzz

Jetting in from Paris to Fashion Party

BY // 03.27.17
photography Daniel Driensky

Since its inception nine years ago, the Dallas Art Fair has been steadily working its way up the ladder towards achieving its now, rock star status. Thanks to founders Chris Byrne and John Sughrue, who have been loyal champions of the arts, it has become one of the leading art fairs in North America, attracting national and international artists, collectors, and galleries from around the globe.

“It’s a moment to celebrate!” Sughrue told PaperCity as the festivities kicked off at Neiman Marcus downtown.

Neiman’s helped launch the Dallas Art Fair so it was only natural that the party action would take place back where it all began. We spotted Neiman Marcus power players Jeff Byron, Ginger Reeder, Kevin Hurst, Marjon Henderson, Mimi Sterling, and Chuck Steelman making the rounds through the vibrant crowd. Art types and socials congregated in the shoe salon of the flagship store where spirits were high.

We caught up with Rosa Langley, director of development for the Dallas Contemporary, who was all aglow, excited for MTV Re:DEFINE, which was set for the following evening. She was delighted to hear that guests were already looking forward to the delicious fare from Headington Companies’ new eatery, Wheelhouse, which is supplying late night snacks for the Re:DEFINE after party.

Langley introduced us to Danielle Cardoso Maia, Galerie Frank Elbaz director, who had just touched down from Paris but, of course, in true French fashion didn’t look jet lagged in the slightest. Also there from Galerie Frank Elbaz was Dallas director Elizabeth James. Having just moved back from Los Angeles where she had been for the past nine years, James had a lot to say about the burgeoning growth in Dallas.

“If you had told me, growing up, that one day there would be a park over the highway (Klyde Warren Park over Woodall Rodgers Freeway), I would have said you’re crazy!” the Dallas native admitted.

We popped by the DJ booth where a bubbly Steffi Burns shared that she was about to leave town for several weeks to help promote the latest Impatience rosé that her family’s company, Chateau de Berne, is launching for the spring/summer season.

Dallas Art Fair director Kelly Cornell was buzzing around, ensuring that festivities went off without a hitch — which of course, they did. She introduced the evening’s honoree Mary Vernon, who she described to the crowd as “an incredible pillar in our community.” Vernon, who recently retired after a 50-year teaching career at Southern Methodist University was chatting with fellow art enthusiasts, including Dallas artist Winston Lee Mascarenhas.

“It’s now Arts Month. It’s an embarrassment of riches that we are all going to get to experience in the contemporary and visual arts,” Sughrue said. Mark your calendars for Friday, April 7 through Sunday, April 9. John and his wife Marlene Sughrue, Chris Byrne, Kelly Cornell, Brandon Kennedy, and the rest of the team will be celebrating what is expected to be another successful Dallas Art Fair.

Home, chic home.

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