The happening is art.
By Susan Kehoe, PH.D.
Photography by Jerry Zolnysky
In the magnificent Great Hall of the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), the “who’s who” of art and fashion gathered for a memorable Fash Bash event. The Founders Junior Council (FJC), the young professionals’ auxiliary of the DIA, hosted their signature event in partnership with Neiman Marcus on August 11. Every year since 1970, the FJC and DIA have presented one of the premier fashion events of the season. Proceeds in 2016 will directly benefit the FJC’s recent pledge of $1 million to the museum’s endowment campaign.
This year’s theme was borrowed from the Post-Modernist era idea of “a happening, an event meant to be considered as art.” When guests first entered, the theme was evident as attendants, wrapped in white ethereal outfits concealing their identity, were stationed as sign-bearers directing the flow for registration and the cocktail party. Within minutes, after a hug from DIA Director Salvador Salort-Pons, SEEN was tweeting from the pre-party where guests’ attire rivaled that of the models who would soon sweep down the double-aisle runway.
The Neiman Marcus “Art of Fashion” runway show was filled with fashion from the most important designers in the world, all of which is carried at Neiman Marcus at the Somerset Collection. Eight of the runway models have graced the pages of Neighborhood SEEN style stories in the past year and every outfit elicited awe and applause. The Lincoln Black Label After Party, complete with DJ, drinks, dancing and food, delivered the perfect gala ending to the evening.
Ken Downing, Neiman Marcus Senior Vice President and Fashion Director, curated the runway show at the sold-out event for the third year. He drew inspiration for the model’s hair and makeup from Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera as he worked backstage among the Diego Rivera murals in the Rivera court at the DIA. Coupled with the multi-layered outfits, Downing said guests experienced “an over-the-top translation of the season.” One-of-a kind precious jewelry designs were provided by Sahil Bahsin of Coomi.
“A vibrant mix of fashion art and philanthropy, Fash Bash offers a summer evening set in the incomparable cultural and architectural gem that is the Detroit Institute of Arts,” said Amy Zimmer, FJC president. A special nod to volunteers Jessica Pawl and Pamela Marcil from the FJC, Lindsey Barile, PR Director and Ken Dewey, Style Director at Neiman Marcus at the Somerset Collection, the unsung heroes behind the scenes — we know how hard you worked to make this a perfect evening for everyone. NS
Fashions Available at Neiman Marcus at Somerset Collection
Armani, Rosie Assouline, Roberto Cavalli, Chanel, Cloe, Brunello Cucinelli, Etro, Tom Ford, Givenchy, Gucci, Caroline Herrera, Marc Jacobs, Naeem, Khan, Judith Leiber, Monique Lhullier, Marni, Stella McCartney, J Mendel, Prada, Akris, Punto, Oscar de la Renta, The Row, St. John, Brandon Sun, Valentino, Dries Van Noten, John Varvatos.