Pauline Bewick's latest exhibition was a very grand affair in the Great Room of The Shelbourne on Wednesday evening. Guests buzzed around the room admiring the work, while the Cafe Orchestra provided pleas ant background music. Pauline looked amazing in a coral-coloured dress. The exhibition was the visual translation of Merriman's comic epic, The Midnight Court; which is full of sexual imagery, amongst other things. The artist spoke about the inspiration behind her work. She's got buckets of talent and charisma, and her husband, Pat Mella, looked on with pride. Historian Tim Pat Coogan opened the exhibition and gave a witty, if somewhat risque, speech. Some laughed and others shuffled rather restlessly. He managed to mention Bertie Ahern, Senator David Norris and Cardinal Connell In his speech. But there was no mention of the subject of his biography, De Valera. The comely maidens in these pictures weren't dancing at the cross-roads, that's for sure.
One could have been forgiven for thinking the Progressive Democrats were having a reunion. Former deputy Liz O'Donnell looked absolutely fantastic in a black ensemble as she moved through the room. Her former colleague, Tom Parlon, decided to stay on the steps of the Great Room for most of the evening, surveying the hall, while Dr Abdul Bulbulia examined the presentation suite of limited edition prints which were on sale. The Shelbourne's general manager, Liam Doyle, chatted to the equally sartorial art dealer and author JJ Gibbons about the book he's writing on Parknasilla Hotel. Artist Maria Simmons-Gooding traveled up from Kerry for the event and caught up with fellow artist Carmel Mooney. James English RHA was in deep conversation with James Hanley RHA, who is opening a life drawing exhibition in the United Arts Club next Thursday. Ian Whyte took time out from preparing for his art auction at the end of this month and Pat Taylor crossed the road from his gallery to lend his support. Pauline Bewick is on a bit of a roll at the moment, as another painting of hers, Holly Pregnant, is to feature on the cover of the reprint of Nobel Prize for Literature 2007 winner Doris Lessing's short story, A Man and Two Women.