No, Oscar Niemeyer wasn't there (although several of my friends emailed to ask, "How is he going to make it up all those stairs in your apartment building?!?") but because I adore his architecture and recently visited some of his buildings in Belo Horizonte, Brazil (my favorite is the Church of Saint Francis of Assissi in Pampulha Park) I decided to throw an homage party for him. His 100th birthday just happened to be on December 15th which was also allegedly THE biggest party night of 2007 (according to Evite.com data, there were over 8,000 holiday parties being held in New York City--but MINE was the only Niemeyer-themed bash!) I served caipirinhas (I bought a few bottles of cachaca at the Sao Paulo airport a few weeks ago), Brazilian cheese puffs (which were just as controversial as Niemeyer's city of Brasilia: "Brilliant! I've tasted the future!" some of my guests enthused. "These gluey puffs are a Utopian nightmare!" others griped), goat-cheese-stuffed radishes, and Loretta Lynn's white bean dip (cuz it just ain't Christmas without some Kentucky-style hospitality). While intellectual arguments raged in my Mao Room, "That Man from Rio" (1964 French film starring the yummy Jean-Paul Belmondo which spoofs Niemeyer with scenes shot in Brasilia) was screened in the VIP Room. Below are a few shots of the happy revelers, plus: the during and after of the construction of Corey Sabourin's gingerbread tribute to Niemeyer's National Cathedral.
Angela G. gives good '40s-style glamour
Angela and Carlota. Carlota followed the Brazilian-themed dress code by donning a tropical-print muumuu.
Angela and yours truly in the VIP Room.
The gingerbread church under construction.
Carlota and Mina Estevez in my kitchen.
Pin-Up magazine Editor/Creative Director Felix Burrichter (center) with Marcello (left) and friend. Pin-Up is the hippest architecture mag on the scene right now.
Photographer Mathias Kessler and my tree
Knitwear designer Tom Scott emerges from the loo. Note the Niemeyer building photos to the left.
The fabulous Lauren Pine, a friend, and Dennis Stansbury. Bruce Benderson is in the background discussing the fine art of fragrance with perfume blogger Christopher Voigt (not pictured).
Max has a dialectical moment in the Mao Room
Angela does runway in my kitchen
Opium den-like giddiness in the Mao Room
Writer/photographer Nancy Stout
Bruce Benderson (right) and friend
Above: Belmondo flying over and around Brasilia, early '60s