Parties: Annabel's has a new Prince

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The Independent Online

Everyone agreed that Annabel's was a most appropriate venue for the Serpentine's after-party for art superstar Richard Prince – purveyor of such classic male fantasies as a Buick plastered with busty lovelies and paintings of tightly uniformed nurses – given that the legendary Mayfair nightclub has also seen its fair share of high-end frolicking over the years.

Yet, despite the presence at the 25 June event of both Annabel's old-timers (David Bailey, Bryan Ferry, Valentino) and party-animal newcomers (including artists Jane Wilson and Conrad Shawcross, photographers Mario Testino and Johnnie Shand Kydd, fashion designer Phoebe Philo and supermodel Stella Tennant), there was a disappointing lack of canoodling on the club's famous banquettes, which instead seated nearly 200 for a lavish formal dinner.

Perhaps Prince was celeb-ed out, having allowed an eclectic stream of admirers, from Cherie Blair to hip-hopper Pharrell Williams, to a series of informal pre-previews the day before, for he seemed content to be surrounded by a cordon consisting of his glamorous wife Noel Grunwald and two children – though it was noted that he also spent a significant amount of time chatting to Damien Hirst's business manager, Frank Dunphy. Indeed, business seemed the order of the day, with Prince's three dealers, Barbara Gladstone, Larry Gagosian and Sadie Coles, all extremely happy to chat to Roman Abramovich's girlfriend Dasha Zhukova, who this autumn opens a vast contemporary art space in Moscow with the able help of Mollie Dent Brocklehurst.

There was a brief flurry of excitement as Prince pal (and collector) Damien Hirst sashayed in at midnight, but it seems that like the rest of the art world, he too has abandoned his wayward ways.

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