ROASTING RICHARD PRINCE
The roast of artist Richard Prince at the Friars Club on East 55th Street in Manhattan on Nov. 17, 2010, turned out well, by all accounts. RoastmasterGlenn O’Brien gave a masterful speech, toasting the guest of honor with witty one-liners — some borrowed from Prince’s own paintings — and a comic reading of the actual jokes contained in Sigmund Freud’s Wit and Its Relation to the Unconscious. “Many of us consider Uncle Miltie to be the originator of appropriation,” O’Brien noted. “He was really an archivist, he assembled the Milton Berle Private Joke File, which contains over 10,000 jokes, only a small percentage of which have been appropriated by Richard Prince, the Milton Berle of art.”
Accompanying O’Brien on the piano was jazzman Robert Aaron. Second on the dais was Stuart Parr, Eminem’s producer, who read what purported to be congratulatory telegrams from Larry Gagosian, Peter Brant, Silvio Berlusconi, Arnold Scwharzenegger and other notables, hilarious impersonations that were all done in the proper accents.
Among the attendees, seated around half a dozen tables in the “Milton Berle Room,” dining on halibut or veal chops, was Prince himself, of course, with his wife, Noel, plus Guggenheim Museum curator Nancy Spector, artist Dan Colen, photographer Terry Richardson, Sotheby’s chief Lisa Dennison, neurosurgeon Dr. Frank Moore and his wife Nina, Cynthia Rowley and husband Bill Powers, Alberto and David Mugrabi, Tony Shafrazi, Rachel and Jean-Pierre Lehmann, writer James Frey, and Adam Lindemann and his wife, dealer Amalia Dayan.