Murakami After-Party Re-Creates L.A. Event in New York

Production company Caravents staged a personal after-party for Takashi Murakami in a Soho loft, based on a similar event created for the artist in L.A.

By Mimi O'Connor April 7, 2008, 1:04 PM EDT

Mirror Men from Acroback performed at Murakami's bash.

Photo: Keith Sirchio

Takashi Murakami's Brooklyn Ball After-Party
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Two and a half weeks is probably not  the preferred time frame in which to pull together a world-renowned artist's private party to follow a celebrity-filled museum gala. At least Cara Kleinhaut of Caravents had one thing going for her when she was called in to produce the event to follow the Brooklyn Museum's annual ball, which this year celebrated Takashi Murakami: She had done it once before.

Back in November, the artist hired Kleinhaut's firm to plan a similar bash, held after the opening of the artist's exhibition at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art. Less than three weeks before the Brooklyn Museum's Louis Vuitton-sponsored event, L.A.-based Kleinhaut got the call asking if she'd do it again, this time in New York. “The biggest challenge was the time constraints,” the producer said prior to guests' arrival at Soho's Aglow Studios on Thursday evening. (Town cars and shuttles provided transportation for those attending the Brooklyn event.) “Two weeks ago I was here doing a site survey.” (Shameless plug: She logged on to BizBash.com to find a space.)

Kleinhaut utilized, and shipped in, many of the L.A. party's elements for the New York production, such as silk pillows in bold prints and luxe faux chinchilla and mink fur accents. Additional similar components included modern microsuede furnishings, ghost stools, and customized motion graphics projected onto the loft's blank white walls. “It's similar as far as the overall vibe we created, but we did L.A. in a very different space. It was a converted restaurant, and more of a downtown L.A .aesthetic,"  she said.

Additional touches to the party, held for 300 people including friends of the artist, investors, buyers, and celebs, included flair bartenders and Mirror Men from Acroback, who performed on a rotating podium, creating a human disco ball effect. “He likes a bit of the theater,” she said. “That's very much Takashi.”

Perhaps the only damper on the evening was the weather, which limited the use of the loft's outdoor terraces. By the 10 p.m. start time of the party, a slight drizzle began to fall, and by 10:25, a plastic sheet and ghost stools covered the furniture outside. The LED candles, however—visible through the loft's enormous window—kept flickering.

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