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Artnet News
July 24, 2008 

The summertime art scene out on the south shore of Long Island -- the area generally known as "the Hamptons" -- gets kicked up a notch this weekend, with two major art events on the schedule.

* The 15th Annual Watermill Summer Benefit, July 26, 2008, is the art-celebrity-studded fund-raiser for avant-garde theater impresario Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center, which conducts summer workshops for some 80 artists at a sprawling, wooded estate off Route 27. One trademark of the annual event is an assortment of wacky art performances and installations presented on the grounds during the benefit by resident artists, who include this year a special guest star: German artist Jonathan Meese, who is giving a special performance, dubbed Marlene Dietrich in Dr. No’s Ludovico-Clinic (Dr. Baby’s Erzland), and also premiering an installation of 20 new videos and two gigantic bronze sculptures.

The Watermill benefit itself launches at 6 pm, with cocktails and a silent and live auction of artworks conducted by auctioneer Simon de Pury. Among the artists who have works in the sale are Hope Atherton, Oleg Kulik, Philippe Parreno, Enoc Perez, Spencer Tunick, Carrie Mae Weems and Lisa Yuskavage. And the long list of "honorary chairs" ranges from Marina Abramovic and Mikhail Baryshnikov to Dita von Teese and Rufus Wainright. Tickets start at $1,000; call (212) 253-7484 ex. 10 for more info.

* Scope Hamptons, July 24-27, 2008, at East Hampton Studios near the airport in Wainscott, N.Y. (about seven miles past Watermill further out on Route 27), is now in its fourth year at the 25,000-square-foot venue. Events begin tonight, July 24, with the initial run of the "Collector Mentorship Auction," in which beginning collectors can place silent bids for an hour-long tutorial from practiced art experts like Melva Bucksbaum, Raymond Learsy and Beth Rudin DeWoody.

Among the 37 participating dealers in Scope Hamptons 2008 are Dean Project, Ethan Cohen, Glowlab, Hous Projects, Jack the Pelican, Michael Steinberg, Rare and Sundaram Tagore (New York), plus Fernando Pradilla (Madrid), Katharine Mulherin (Toronto), Jacob Karpio (Cuesta de NķŮez), Carrie Secrist (Chicago), Rudolf Budja (Salzburg), Fredric Snitzer, Kevin Bruk (Miami), Enrique Guerrero (Polanco), Brigite Schenk (Cologne), Meat Market (Washington, D.C.) and Salomon Contemporary (East Hampton).

The weekend kicks off on Friday, July 25, at Salomon Contemporary Warehouse on Plank Road in East Hampton with an opening night celebration that doubles as a reception for artist Michael Bilsborough -- he of the mural-sized attenuated line drawings of orgies. The event runs from 8 pm to midnight, and features a performance by LaJohn Joseph as well as the Human Antenna, a mindreader and mentalist. For details, see

Chanel’s new "Mobile Art" pavilion, a spaceship-like plastic structure designed by Zaha Hadid on commission from Chanel mastermind Karl Lagerfeld, is slated to arrive in New York, Oct. 20-Nov. 9, 2008. The 7,500-square-foot structure is designed to hold an exhibition of commissioned artworks inspired by Chanel’s classic quilted handbag. Among the celebrated art stars involved in the project are Nobuyoshi Araki, the Blue Noses, Daniel Buren, Sophie Calle, Wim Delvoye, Sylvie Fleury, Yang Fudong, Subodh Gupta, Y.Z. Kami, Yoko Ono and Pierre & Gilles. The Mobile Art pavilion has already appeared in Hong Kong and presently is on view in Tokyo. Its site in New York is Central Park’s Rumsey Playfield at 70th Street (also home to Summer Stage and its free concerts, readings and other events). Chanel has made payments to the city and the Central Park Conservancy totaling about $1.5 million, according to a report in the New York Times. Admission is free but timed tickets are required. For more info, see

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