Linda Yablonsky writes ArtForum’s Diary on the Drawing Center’s annual gala asking how you deal with the “season of fund-raising hell?” Though its not clear whether she’s referring to the hell of attending numerous pocket-opening events or the hell of trying to raise money in the midst of an economic collapse:
Mount an exhibition detailing the fascinating, troubled life and art of Unica Zürn. The author of a few violent sex novels and hand behind the masklike automatic ink drawings on the center’s walls, Zürn is the undersung Surrealist whose obsession with Henri Michaux and partnership with Hans Bellmer doomed her to madness and suicide. The exhibition, pried from the clutches of various estates by curator João Ribas, includes more than just intricate drawings of Zürn’s private gods and monsters. It also has photographs in which her masochism in modeling for Bellmer’s twisted “Poupées” is on telling display.
Patrons seemed drawn to these dark matters. The SoHo nonprofit raised $375,000 with the benefit. It included a dinner for 270 honoring painter Pat Steir in a TriBeCa party room overlooking the new towers of Lower Manhattan, once a low-slung bohemian savanna where the deer and antelope of art and theory played.
The evening was characterized by an elegant modesty, an elusive trait that has become the necessary armor to defend against these troubled fiscal times.
All in Good Fund (Artforum.com)