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Andy Warhol Party Benefits Gallery’s Interns

A party celebrating the art and culture of pop artist Andy Warhol was held on Saturday at the Fine Arts Center’s University Gallery. All proceeds raised were in support of the gallery’s internship program.

The event, titled, “Andy’s Loft: The artist, the Legend… and the Party!” featured a martini reception, art exhibitions, a dinner buffet, a 1960’s trivia quiz, costume contest and a video on the internship program.

Doors opened to the gallery at 7:00 p.m. and attendees were presented with two exhibitions, one being “The Minox and the Big Shot: Andy Warhol’s Photography (1970-87),” which contained rare photography and Polaroid pictures taken by Warhol. These items were donated to the gallery by the Warhol Foundation in 2007.

The other showcase was entitled “Connecting the Dots…The Warhol Legacy: Tom Friedman, Ellen Gallagher, Vik Muniz and Rob Pruitt,” which was a display of four contemporary artists’ work based off Warhol’s work. Friedman, one of the featured artists, made a guest appearance during the night.

Originally to be located in the Campus Center Auditorium, the event was changed to the gallery to add to the overall atmosphere. According to event designer Robert Christiansen, a 2009 graduate of the University of Massachusetts, the goal was to “create a space that facilitated conversation and was comfortable to be in.”

An open bar was available all night as well as a dinner buffet which included, of course, tomato soup.

Around 9:00 p.m., the crowd was gathered to watch a movie depicting the overall impact of the gallery on certain people. Loretta Yarlow, the gallery director, thanked her entire staff for all of the work they put into the event as well as well as their work throughout the years. She also thanked the crowd for their help and stated that “we are a teaching museum, and we are involved in training the next generation of students.”

Tickets, which were $100 each, benefited the internship program.

The movie, a testimonial to the greatness of the gallery, featured many people speaking on how the gallery personally influenced their lives and what the program had done to help them succeed in the future.

A guest appearance was made by Chancellor Holub, who could not be recognized until he was called out to speak for the audience. Donning a leather jacket, white tank-top and beret, the chancellor played along with the overall theme of the 60’s, and was even eligible for the costume contest, although the award was granted to five people depicting Ludwig Van Beethoven and four different colored pictures of him, an allusion to Warhol’s work.           

”This is really a wonderful event and gallery,” Holub said. “And the best thing about it is that it helps students, and that’s what this campus is about.”

The night ended with a dance party set to songs and themes of the 60’s. The gallery will continue to showcase the work and exhibitions throughout December 13.

Tim Jones can be reached at timothyj@student.umass.edu.

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