Mol’s Place – Art Party No. 1

Launching a series of events the inaugural The Art Party {no1} kicked off in grand style at the Covent Garden home of art aficionado Jan Mol. The extraordinary Grade II residence of this private collector serves as exhibit space for co-curators Melissa Blanchflower and Katy Orkisz several times a year and is a work of art to behold in its own right.

The much anticipated Art Party served up an interactive experience transporting guests beyond the controlled and artificial settings of traditional white-walled galleries.  Some came for revelry, some for art – all were immersed in both.

These ambitious soirees combine installation, performance and all manner of artwork with live music, an arty entourage and lashings of champagne.   Setting the tone for the evening was Simon Tyszko’s red neon sculpture Serious Fun hung above the DJ decks heralding the tenor of the night to follow.   Video works by Kate Hawkins and Eloise Fornieles played – Mal Gusto enacting an entertaining conflict of a female fashion/etiquette faux pas.  Slowly and smoothly seemingly disparate work’s of these handpicked artists began to work together to provide a mosaic tapestry for the event.

Everyone was at their sartorial best though none outshone The Rodnik Band’s “Venus in Sequins” art dresses hung on the wall and modelled by Benjamin O’Connor.  It takes a certain je ne sais quoi to pull off a Urinal as haute-couture and this boy has it in spades.

Performances began with Bedwyr Williams’ In Dreams a recital for the pondering crowd’s consideration. Williams’ work will never be overly-accessible and this performance stretched expectations and experiences as would other work to come.

The crowd chatted and mingled effortlessly around Oliver Ashton’s Kaleidotron 2011 installation. The interactive quality of this and other pieces providing talking points for animated discussions amongst revellers.  Paul Sakoilsky’s newspapers The Dark Times is as relevant as it is colourful.  Deconstructed media messages create a timely and entertaining work that explores wealth, consumerism, greed and anarchy.  Approaching the bright flag-like display my eye was drawn to dark images and a headline “Black Monday * “YoYo Life” that made a banker take drugs”.  With interest piqued there was much to discover and exhibiting this work within the confines of a multimillion pound space raises the interpretive challenge a point that Sakoilsky, working in the rarefied art world, is surely aware.

Mol - It's his gaff

We Are Birds Of Paradise provided a visual musical feast. Their set was performed in fantastic bespoke costumes custom-made for this party.  Towards midnight Mark Scott-Wood’s intervention, a fantastical bagel-eyed parade of sorts with a banner “This is only a distraction from the inevitable” again picking up the theme of media’s mixed messages.  There was more to explore yet this lady needs to sit and chat and the only thing missing from this evening was alas available seating.

We left exhausted, exhilarated, clutching goody bags and anticipating The Art Party {no2}.

Mol’s Place
23 Macklin Street
London, UK, WC2B 5NN

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