I sauntered down Marylebone High Street around 8pm, glad to be going home after a long day, but willing to be swayed to stay out.
I glanced to my right and noticed a lot of razzamatazz outside a small neon blue lit building. What is it? I thought. A new club? Somewhere I need to know about? Perhaps a place I could go for my imminent birthday..
I crossed the street to join the throng of people outside and noticed the flashing lights, indicating serious cameras at work. Two girls manned the door. ‘I don’t think you’ll have me down’ I said, pointing to the guest list. ‘Well, let’s see’ the tall blonde girl said as she thumbed through the pages. ‘Oh, really I’m sure I’m not on there’. ‘It’s fine’ she said, waving me though.
Squeezing through the masses at this opening of ‘Submerged’ by Tyler Shields, another glamorous girl with dark hair and a red tutu smiled at me. ‘Like a drink?’ she said, thrusting a tall glass of pinkness into my hand. ‘Thank you’ I said, taking off a couple of layers and dropping my bag by the bar.
Trays of sushi were temptingly laid out. I popped a piece of raw tuna into my mouth and surveyed the scene.
Photographers were everywhere. ‘Is Kate Moss due here?’ I asked one of them; usually at an art view or somesuch event in London that’s the reason there’s such a proliferation of big lenses. ‘I think she was invited, but not sure she’s coming’ he replied.
I complimented the DJ on the tunes he was playing, ‘My name is Gregory – what’s yours?’ he said. ‘Oh! Are you French?’ I asked. ‘No, Italian, but I live in France that’s why I speak like I do’. We chatted about the art. ‘I like the large photographs, but I think £18,000 is a bit expensive for one’ he said smiling.
Tytti (from Finland) took my name for the gallery’s list. Did I know Tyler’s work, she asked. I confessed that I didn’t. ‘He photographs a lot of celebrities – Lindsay Lohan is one of the more famous’. I pointed out my favourite picture and she told me that it was Lydia Hearst – the next ‘big star’ and that: ‘All the models had to learn to hold their breath for four minutes to go underwater where he took the photos’.
I left the by now hot and steamed up gallery for some air and got chatting to Gemma – an intern at the gallery. ‘I’d love a cigarette‘ I said. ‘Yes, I would too – I’ll go find us some’ she said, disappearing inside.
Tyler walked past in a dinner suit and black bow tie looking every inch the dapper photographer. He posed for a picture with a bright blue haired young lady. As she vanished another took her place; this time a Marilyn Monroe lookalike.
Gemma appeared back with two cigarettes. ‘I’ll give you a couple of invitations for the Moniker Art Fair tomorrow, and you must have a goody bag before you go’ she said. I thanked her and a little while later left the party thinking about the art world and the domino effect.