Guests at Opening of 1962 Léger Exhibition

This silent footage from the Guggenheim Museum Archives’ Film Collection of the opening of the 1962 exhibition Fernand Léger: Five Themes and Variations documents quite a party. The film, sometimes grainy and sometimes dark, nevertheless captures the glamour of opening night: women wearing gloves and sparkling dresses, men in tuxedos, and crowds packing the rotunda floor. Distinguished guests caught on film include Adlai Stevenson, the United States delegate to the United Nations; Hervé Alphand, the French Ambassador to the United States; and Madame Alphand, elegantly wrapped in a white fur shrug. A young Thomas Messer can be seen greeting partygoers and walking arm-in-arm with his wife, Remi Garcia Villa. Endearingly, an unidentified woman is caught showing friends how to do the twist and a couple hams it up for the camera with a kiss.

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