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Setting Philadelphia Afire

July 29, 2010

photo by Todd Taylor

As the lights dimmed in Le Méridien Philadelphia‘s main ballroom, a striking figure clad in a tailored suit took the stage, positioned himself in front of a canvas set against the black curtain, and began to paint. In an elaborate theatrical performance incorporating music, dance, and speed-painting, local contemporary artist Fernando Luis Alvarez set the city of Philadelphia afire.  Gossip columnist for Philadelphia Magazine’s The Philly Post Blog, HughE Dillon, said that Alvarez “didn’t disappoint as he put on quite a show.”

On Thursday, July 22nd, Alvarez was invited to host an event at the Philadelphia hot spot, as the hotel has been displaying his work in their main lobby and restaurant, Amuse, since May. The actual performance was a conceptual piece specifically designed by Alvarez. Its purpose is to explore the duality of his life as both a businessman and an artist. The audience is transported to his studio after a long day at work; Alvarez appears on-stage wearing a business suit, not unlike those he wore during his years as a Senior Business Consultant, with his canvas and paints awaiting his touch. Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark” kicks on and Alvarez begins his frenzy, painting his trademark Lips as two female dancers– like so many women before them– try to tempt his focus away from his art. As the performance progresses, the women rip the suit off his body to reveal a gorgeously designed matador costume. The piece finishes with his red Lips blazing on the canvas, and the final chords of “Paint it Black” by the Rolling Stones echoing throughout the room.

A captive audience of Philadelphia media, Le Méridien management, design professionals, collectors, and local executives were there to witness the performance.  A truly spectacular night, the Gallery is anticipating our next event to showcase Alvarez’s work.

We’d like to thank the entire Le Méridien staff, GM Evan Evans, Joe Shingler, Senrio Catering Sales Manager Jonathan Hagens, the Le Méridien Catering team, the hotel engineers, and AV guys Chris and Dan.  We’d also like to give special props to Christopher Conboy Jr, Design Services Consultant to HEI Hotels & Resorts; dancers Christine Onyiah and Zhenya Plekhanova; Annie Heckenberger and the rest of the Red Tettemer team; and our very own Gallery Girls.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. August 7, 2010 11:28 pm

    Nice job Fernando!

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