Performance art isn’t sporting a Party City wig and a Borat uni-jock, like Miley Cyrus did at her appearance at the epically disastrous Jeffrey Deitch party at The Raleigh Wednesday night.
The real art was what was happening outside, where thousands of eager adults — grown men and women — were clamoring to get into the party like passengers on the Titanic jumping into life boats.
Out back, where the line snaked up, down and along 18th Street, there was Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Best Buddies bigwig and the uncle of Patrick Schwarzenegger, Cyrus’s latest conquest, having a hard time getting into the mess.
The young Schwarzenegger, dressed every so subtly, so preppy, was seen most of the time standing out front on a cell phone trying to guide his friends and family through the huddled masses like VIPs at Ellis Island circa the Great Immigration.
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Shriver couldn’t get in the back, side or front entrances until his nephew came out to retrieve him. Shameful. Same goes for some others of the Kennedy/Shriver/Schwarzenegger clan, who probably never crowd surfed in Kennebunkport or anywhere else for that matter until last night. Even the party thrower, Deitch, diminutive and dapper in powder blue, had to swim through masses to get to the front to retrieve some heavy hitters including the man who runs the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh.
Were Andy alive to witness this circus like calamity, he’d have been sitting outside, as we did, with the more colorful invitees, including drag divas Elaine Lancaster and Lady Bunny, invited by Dee Ocleppo, the wife of The Raleigh’s owner, Tommy Hilfiger. They were left out in the cold (well, warmth) like last night’s trash. Disgraceful, yes, but fabulously colorful too. One man described the scene as an embarrassing sign of the apocalypse reminiscent of the Beatles at Shea Stadium, only minus the Beatles and their grandiosity.
At the end of the night, Cyrus wailed out a few tunes — Rick James’s Super Freak and The Turtles’ Happy Together — sounding like a feral cat imitating Yoko Ono. It was bad. Really bad. The ex Hannah Montana star babbled some profanities and then sang a ballad she claims was only previously sung in her living room but wasn’t even fit for her shower. Ooof.
And at the time of this writing, the Schwarzenegger/Shrivers were said to be filing a Baker Act on their son. The rest of the crowd may or may not have made it out OK, but at the end of the night, they got to see a monumental show signaling the demise of civilization — or at least Art Basel Miami.