WHENEVER THE CONTEMPORARY AUCTIONS draw nigh, New York galleries greet the influx of collectors as if it were the Second Coming. Yet, to borrow from Yeats, it wasn’t anarchy that was loosed upon the world last weekend. Instead it was Larry Gagosian, who announced the addition of his tenth gallery, in Geneva, and led the smoothly coiffed slouching beast with a triple-headed monster of shows for Rauschenberg, Currin, and Kiefer.
“Boring, boring, boring!” joked Uma Thurman. “I don’t know why I bothered.” Currin looked both proud and sheepish. “Does he know it’s a good show?” someone asked his wife, Rachel Feinstein. “Yeah,” she said. “He knows.”
So did everyone else, or at least everyone invited to the dinner Gagosian hosted at the Mark Restaurant by Jean-Georges, where Eli and Edythe Broad, Pauline Karpidas, Helen Marden, and Marc Jacobs were among the pals at the head table. Though it sometimes seems that writers do not count for much in the art world, the other guests included a contingent of scribes such as Tom Wolfe, Peter Schjeldahl, James Frey, Deborah Solomon, Calvin Tomkins, Dodie Kazanjian, Michiko Kakutani, and Steve Martin, whose new art-world novel, An Object of Beauty, features Gagosian and other recognizable figures that make it seem more than fiction. “Why is Tom Wolfe here?” wondered Jim Currin, the artist’s natty physicist father. “I want to meet him!” (He did.)