Arts / Museums / The Seen

With Skyline Views and a Rising Local Star, the Dallas Contemporary Opened Their Fall Season in Style

Fashion, Art, and Music Mix at the Thompson

BY // 10.04.21
photography BFA Event Photography

What is my formula for an exquisite evening? A layered partnership between chic organizations. On a recent night, that was a party thrown by Dallas Contemporary, Saks, and the Thompson Dallas. The Contemporary, which has the reputation of being one of the arts community’s edgier museums, was opening its fall exhibitions — four concurrent solo presentations by artists Peter Halley, Ilya and Emilia Kabakov, Shilpa Gupta, and Renata Morales. (You can delve deeper into those exhibitions—open through February 13, 2022—in the September, October, and November issues of PaperCity.)

The evening began with a tour of those exhibitions for a larger gathering of the museum’s fans. Then a select group made their way to the ninth floor of the relatively new Thompson Hotel Dallas for a cocktail party followed by an al fresco dinner with magnificent views.

Saks x Dallas Contemporary x Thompson 9/25 Event (Photo by BFA Event Photography)
Saks x Dallas Contemporary x Thompson Party (Photo by BFA Event Photography)

After securing a paloma cocktail (made with one of my favorites, LALO Tequila) and grabbing a nibble, I pulled aside mother-son fashion duo, Linda Ewing and Tanner Ewing, to ask about their chic ensembles: a mashup of Rick Owens, Rag & Bone, Alexander McQueen, and Roksanda. Another fashionable standout for me was the always effervescent Leisa Street. When questioned as to who she was wearing, Leisa shared that the full chartreuse skirt was Cynthia Rowley. The striking pink top? Well she could only recall picking it up at Forty Five Ten years ago.

The balcony space was gorgeously arranged with two long tables filled with elegant, yet not fussy flatware and floral installations by Bottega de Flores’ Nolan Kiser. I was so pleased to find myself seated next to Saks CEO Marc Metrick‘s wife, Deborah Metrick, who looked incredibly soignée in an orange evening dress that she confessed had been purchased just weeks before the NYC lockdown had began and she was so happy to finally get the opportunity to wear it.

And back to my formula for an exquisite evening, two other key elements are engaging conversations and a divine meal. It was a lively discussion in our little pocket of the table (which included Nancy Rogers, Karla McKinley, and Kaleta Blaffer Johnson) as we shared stories of exotic travels made over the summer. The menu, created by chef de cuisine Jeramie Robison, featured a first course comprised of grilled golden beets, animal farms lacinato kale, jamaican hibiscus gastrique, candied seed granola and tarragon labneh. And for my main I opted for the roasted Alaskan halibut, melted leeks, favetta relish, shaved burgundy truffle, and drizzled with sauce beurre blanc.

Saks x Dallas Contemporary x Thompson 9/25 Event (Photo by BFA Event Photography)
Abraham Alexander (Photo by BFA Event Photography)

The evening didn’t end with just dessert and coffee as Marc Metrick got up to announce a surprise performance by Fort Worth-based soul musician, Abraham Alexander, who made a special detour from his fall tour with Leon Bridges just for the party. Some of the other guests that had been assembled who were enjoying his acoustic set were Dallas Contemporary’s Executive Director, Peter Doroshenko; Dallas Contemporary’s Deputy Director, Carolina Alvarez-Mathies; Saks Limitless AVP, Mariel Sholem; artists Peter Halley, Emilia Kabakov and Renata Morales; LALO Tequila Co-Founder, David R. Carballido; Christie’s Deputy Chairwoman, Capera Ryan; collector and philanthropist Joyce Goss, former olympic gymnast, Nastia Luikin; collectors, Lisa and John Runyon; U-Beauty Founder, Tina Chen Craig; and Dallas Contemporary Board Member, Muffin Lemak.

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