PaperCity Magazine

October 2019- Dallas

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38 NIGHT AT THE BALL BY FILIPPO TATTONI-MARCOZZI I n 1951, Don Carlos de Beistegui, then owner of Palazzo Labia in Venice, reopened the splendid 18th-century ball- room — designed by Giorgio Massari and frescoed by Tiepolo — to host Le Bal Oriental. Future generations of glamorous partygoers remember it as the most lavish gathering of fabulous people of the past century. Fast-forward to this spring, during the opening week of La Biennale di Venezia. The palace was once again the setting for an extravagant bash — the Tiepolo Ball, held by the Venetian Heritage Foundation and Maison Dior. Guests arrived by boat to enter the porta d'acqua of the Palazzo, which was lit in hues of red and purple, for a night of drinking and dancing under Tiepolo's frescoed ceilings depicting the tormented love affair of Antony and Cleopatra. It simply doesn't get more glamorous. Rooms were transformed into sumptuous dining halls, with tables draped in Fortuny and richly decorated by Dior's creative team. Santa Margherita wines offered by Count Luca Marzotto and champagne by Ruinart livened up the gala dinner prepared by Venetian chef Silvio Giavedoni. Dior creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri made costumes for Parola Bianca, who danced on stilts. The performance was a glamorous, surreal nod to the ball of 1951, when Christian Dior and Salvador Dalì dressed the acrobats. Another note of nostalgia made modern: As Cecil Beaton did before, brilliant fashion photographer Ellen Von Unwerth documented this new iconic ball. The couture-clad guests were disguised in masks, in true Venetian style — a perfect mix of European aristocrats, busi- ness moguls, fashion and art luminaries, and international philanthropists. Vogue's Hamish Bowels dazzled in a pink 18th-century silk ensemble. Architect Peter Marino, accom- panied by jet-setter Cornelia Guest, was true to his signature black-leather mode with a stunning feathered headdress rem- iniscent of ancient theatrical costumes. Supermodels Monica Bellucci and Karlie Kloss, both in Dior and black eye masks, were ravishing. Sienna Miller and Dasha Zhukova — also in Dior — arrived in alluring capes. Houston's Becca Cason Thrash swanned into Venice bringing ant ever-needed touch of Texas glamour, wearing a stunning black-and-white couture creation topped by more white feathers than any real swan could ever dream! The Tiepolo Ball was organized to raise funds for the conservation and promotion of the cultural and artistic legacy of Venice. Totaling nearly $2 million, the funds will go toward the restoration of the monumental Renaissance staircase of the Scuola Grande di San Giovanni Evangelista, and Tiepolo's painting Castigo dei Serpenti in the Museum of the Gallerie dell'Accademia in Venice. Meanwhile, yours truly will need another half-century to recover from so much fun and beauty on the Laguna. PAPERCITY EUROPEAN EDITOR AT LARGE, FILIPPO TATTONI-MARCOZZI, REPORTS FROM VENICE, WHERE HE DANCED UNDER THE FRESCOES AT THE MAGNIFICENT TIEPOLO BALL. Becca Cason Thrash Hamish Bowles Ellen Von Unwerth Sienna Miller, Lucas Zwirner Tilda Swinton, Toto Bergamo Rossi Karlie Kloss Peter Marino, Cornelia Guest Maria Grazia Chiuri, Pietro Ruffo Valentina Marini Clarelli Amyn Aga Khan Derek Blasberg, Dasha Zhukova

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