Slideluck Potshow put its best foot forward Wednesday night with the 2nd Annual SLIDELUCK Fundraiser & Auction. Monday last we returned to Chinatown after a great success at FotoWeek DC, and in a few short days and near-sleepless nights, the NYC Slideluck Team rallied to transform Sandbox Studios into a compelling gallery space, and was prepared to put DC back in its place as a cultural runner-up.
For the second year in a row, Ryan Jones worked tirelessly to produce the fundraiser. After all the labor she put into Slideluck, Ryan went into another kind of labor last Friday – this year, Ryan not only produced SLIDELUCK, but also, a human being. Five days before the auction (and more than a week early) Ryan brought Scarlet Jones Ouvaroff into the world – we were personally hoping she’d name her firstborn Slideluck, but we’ll settle for her hard work and dedication. Like a true partner, Ryan’s husband, Caspar Ouvaroff, stepped up to curate and install all 60 pieces in the show with yours truly, and with his massive, 6’7” frame, made an appearance at the event large enough for both his lovely bride and newborn child. A huge thank you and congratulations goes out to the growing Ouvaroff clan.
Guests arrived for the VIP reception and sipped on some of Brooklyn’s finest brews – the Local 1 and 2 – while having a first taste of Co-Host Rikrit Tiravanija’s Thai curry pizza – a preview of the curry lunches he will be serving at MoMA as part of an installation beginning next week. Morton, the WhistlePig Rye Whiskey brand ambassador, a house-trained potbelly pig, stole the first part of the show. He demonstrated the virtues that earn potbelly pigs a top-five slot in animal intelligence. As I sat at my desk on Thursday morning, preparing to make an argument for purchasing a floor pig for my office, I learned some fun facts, namely: that pigs can have their feelings hurt. This confirmed my suspicion that only Morton truly grasped the irony of partygoers tossing him dog treats, while munching on crostini with braised Mini Mac Farm pork shoulder, Alstede Farms Winesap apple and local shallot chutney.
Early in the evening, I had the delight of meeting the Co-Host, Jessica Craig-Martin, an esteemed events-turned-art photographer. When prompted by the event’s producer and her former student, Carly Planker, to comment on my attempted mustache, Ms. Craig-Martin replied, “I am a person who generally has a complaint about everything, and I have no complaint about that moustache.” Take that, Mom.
Ms. Craig-Martin used the silent auction as an opportunity to collect some beautiful work. One piece, a photograph by Dolly Faibyshev, featured a detail of a woman and her hound from their least flattering angle, as though Ms. Craig Martin had been asked to cover the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show herself. The second piece she purchased was a photograph by Ruben Natal-San Miguel featuring a woman of questionable employ on the street in Harlem with bedazzled “$” earrings – no less ostentatious than her usual upper-crust subjects.
As the evening progressed, a powerful speech from SLPS Founder and Director Casey Kelbaugh, followed by an uplifting video, brought everyone back to the roots of Slideluck Potshow – an idea idea that began in Casey’s Seattle backyard 11 years ago. A short film about the Slideluck Youth Initiative, one of evening’s primary beneficiaries, concluded with Casey issuing a challenge for the organization to “change the world through photography”. The candor in Casey’s voice gave the audience the impression that they were either with him or against him, and I knew where I fell if I expected another sweet, sweet Brooklyn Lager.
Following an exhilarating live auction of works by Spencer Tunick, Ines Esnal, Barton Lidice Benes and others presented by Sotheby’s Courtney Booth, attendees cautiously guarded their favorite pieces by artists such as Shepard Fairey, Joseph La Piana, Jen Davis and Julie Blackmon in the ongoing silent auction – providing no shortage of micro-narratives fueled by bidding wars. I watched on as two such silent showdowns unfold on pieces book-ending a wall of larger works. The pieces happened to compliment each other quite well, both in watercolor, one a mustache, the other a series of, well, upskirts. Artist John Gordon Gauld contributed the mustache piece from a collection of work done for Bergdorf’s, the upskirts were done by Rosalie Stone Morris – both of whom left arm-in-arm before bidding closed, weary of the melodrama, for some late night karaoke. Thanks guys.
With no shortage of chocolate bark covered in inventive toppings to munch on, prepared by Dave Gould at the Highlands Supper Club, the silent auction wrapped. Men in suits left with art in boxes. Women in cocktail dresses left with men in suits. And the rest of us? Well, we stayed and swilled the remaining Pennant Ale in true Slideluck fashion, until Carly kicked us out. Next stop? Berlin. Dare we bring some Chocolate Stout to the land of Bier? I hope so.Back to all blog posts