Back When It Was Warm…

by R. COURI HAY

FIERY NIGHTS

Rows of octopus, chicken, duck and an entire pig were roasting over open fires around the trunk of a stately tree at Chris Burch’s Southampton estate for an evening he called “On Fire.” Burch flew in Andrés Morataya, Panama’s globally acclaimed “Fire Chef,” to create this fiery night for the social set. As gigantic iron pots of lobster paella were stirred over burning embers, and fresh fruit tarts were served straight from an open-air oven, a live band whipped the chic crowd into a night of wild dancing under a full moon. This was one of the summer’s most memorable nights, a private party where the only agenda was fun. Said agenda was shared by more than one party this summer, from Julia and David Koch’s all-white fete at their oceanfront estate, to the lively dinner Anne Hearst and Jay McInerney gave on the veranda of their home, Ash Grove Farm. Among those seated at Anne and Jay’s were Princess Yasmin Aga Kahn and Blaise Labriola, Wilbur and Hilary Geary Ross, Sandra and Éric Ripert, Robert Zimmerman, Sharon Bush, Candace Bushnell and Jim Coleman, to name just a few. And let’s not forget Einstein the Emu and all the other adorable creatures that roam the property.

HAMPTONS CLASSIC

Michael Bloomberg took two ringside tables at the Hampton Classic Horse Show to cheer on his daughter Georgina as she tackled the big jumps during the $300,000 Grand Prix. “I don’t get nervous watching her anymore,” Bloomberg said as he watched Georgina stay in the saddle as she hit a jump. But although the former mayor was dapper in a purple sweater, it was his five-year-old grandson, Jasper, who had the sartorial edge, in a snappy Panama hat and red, white and blue sneakers. Also swanning around the tent were Brooke Shields, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Don Lemon, Tony Ingrao, Randy Kemper, Donna Karan and Douglas Elliman’s Dottie Herman, whose company was a sponsor. In adition, Ed and Christy Turlington Burns, Matt Lauer, Bruce Springsteen, Christie Brinkley and Jimmy Fallon were spotted at various points during the weeklong, season-closing event.

FLY INTO THE SUN

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: If you only go to one benefit all summer, go to the Watermill Center gala. The magical evening, dubbed “Fly Into the Sun,” featured a dress code of “Dark Shiny Matter” and honored French actress Isabelle Huppert and Laurie Anderson, who performed in honor of her late husband, Lou Reed. Guests were greeted by a flower-festooned installation hung from trees by artist Jared Madere. As they wandered around the center’s woodlands, guests were immersed in 20 intriguing installations, including a three-story, 90-foot wall by Jenny Holzer with “She Outwits Him, She Outlives Him” painted on it. The other side of the wall was covered in graffiti, which attendees were encouraged to tag with spray paint. The benefit raised $2 million for the center’s Artist Residency programs, which bring in more than 170 artists from 65 countries. In the mix were Inga Maren Otto, Susan and Robert Downey Jr., Lisa Anastos, cosmetic mogul Peter Thomas Roth, Janna Bullock, Libbie and David Mugrabi, Kenny Ackerman, and Tatiana and Campion Platt.

SAFARI ROUNDUP

The East Hampton Library Authors Night was cochaired by Hilaria and Alec Baldwin. More than 100 writers signed books, including Jessica Seinfeld, Ann Coulter and ABC’s Elizabeth Vargas, who talked frankly about her struggles with addiction in her book, Between Breaths, during a dinner catered by Andrea Correale of Elegant Affairs….. Audrey Gruss had a White Tea at her home Fairwind to preview her new fragrance, Hope, which launched at Saks Fifth Avenue, with all profits going to the Hope for Depression Research Foundation. Luce Churchill, Donna Acquavella and Kathy Hilton were among the ladies in white….. The Southampton Hospital held its 59th annual Summer Party. Wilbur and Hilary Geary Ross, Howard Lorber, Somers and Jonathan Farkas and Drs. Kenneth Mark and Christopher Calapai were in attendance. The evening, chaired by playwright Terrence McNally and his husband, Tom Kirdahy, and Marigay McKee and her husband, Bill Ford, raised $1.5 million to support the Jenny and John Paulson Emergency Department….. The Parrish Art Museum honored Agnes Gund and Clifford Ross. The night showcased Ross’s piece Digital Wave, an ocean inspired video installation installed on the museum’s façade. Guests included Cindy Sherman, Jeff Koons, Dorothy Lichtenstein, Karolína Kurková and director Terrie Sultan….. Guild Hall opened the stunning photography show Avedon’s America. Director Andrea Grover welcomed the Avedon clan for a dinner dance that honored Bonnie Lautenberg….. The Southampton Animal Shelter honored Sony Schotland and Jean Shafiroff, who greeted Ellen and Chuck Scarborough, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, Jean Remmel Little and Deborah Hearst….. Jack Lenor Larsen dubbed his Long House evening “Boom! The Cosmic Benefit.” The reception, held in the site’s art-dotted garden, honored Cai Guo-Qiang, known for using gunpowder and fireworks in his literally explosive art….. Dianne Bernhard, the first vice president of the Pastel Society of America, gave a party to celebrate the opening of their 45th annual exhibition, Enduring Brilliance, at her atelier in the National Arts Club….. Isabelle Bscher feted Christo at Galerie Gmurzynska during Art EXPO Chicago. The glamorous gallerist showed original pieces from The Gates, the artist’s installation in Central Park in 2005, as well as work by Joan Miró and Fernand Léger. Next stop for the art crowd is Miami Art Week…