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Topical Cream was honored to celebrate the life and legacy of Gretchen Bender at Red Bull Arts.

Provisions were provided by Spiral Theory Test Kitchen, a self-described queer cooking collective helmed by artists Precious Okoyomon’s, Bobbi Salvör Menuez, Quori Theodor, MK, and Kaijja Xiao.
The gathering was to celebrate the video artists legacy IRL and to allow New York artists and writers who might not be familiar with her work the opportunity to be present in her space. Like the best underground dinner parties, the guest of honor was unannounced — Bart, Precious Okoyomon’s pet eel sat perched at the end of the table, slowly swimming back and forth as friends and family got to know each other better.

Guests sat next to Gretchen Bender’s “People in Pain,” 1988 a large installation composed of black vinyl and blue neon which features every movie title which was in production during a six month period between 1987-1988.

Spiral Theory Test Kitchen served dusted red snapper, and the guests ended the night with Loquat Panna Cotta with honey ants and orchid sugar served in a Red Bull can.


Dese Escobar and Natasha Stagg


Precious Okoyomon and Quori Theodor of Sprial Theory Test Kitchen.


Rachel Hahn and Colleen O’Connor


Lyndsy Welgos & Seashell Coker


The final event of the evening was a private screening of Bender’s massive installation “Total Recall.”

Topical Cream’s friends and family gathered at 50 Bowery rooftop bar to celebrate our 6th anniversary.
Flaunt Magazine picked up the story. Sahra Motalebi’s booming operatic voice greeted our guests, who had to walk through the massive blacked out space to reach the elevator and the party on the top floor.

Nicole Eisenman and Theresa Chromati were honored with custom Ilegal Mezcal cocktails and Whitney Fred, Ren G, Dese Escobar, and Venus X DJ’d. The party mood was gothic Miami with hot pink lighting surrounding palm tree, while friends of Topical Cream arrived in their very best club looks to for the occasion.


Lyndsy Welgos, Avena Gallagher


Nicole Eisenman and friends sip on her custom Mezcal cocktail of Mezcal on the rocks, designed by Topical Cream. The artist added “clam juice” to perfect the recipe.


Venus X headlined the birthday party in an amazing fringe cowgirl jacket.


Topical Cream friends and family.


Party hostsesses Marcella Zimmermann and Lyndsy Welgos smile for a pic.


Dese Escobar DJ’d into the night.


Founder Lyndsy Welgos, creates a fire parade for the Topical Cream birthday cake for our 400 or so guests.


Theresa Chromati hanging out with artist Devin n Morris.


Ren G on deck.


50 Bowery features two giant rooftop lounges for guests to take a break from the dancefloor.

Photography by Alyssa Weilenman