POSTED Thu. Aug 7, 2014

Creative Culture

Dirty Linen Winnin'
Adam Karlin
Written by ADAM KARLIN

Arts aficionados, or just those who like good food, drink and pedestrian thoroughfares, pay attention: the 13th Annual Dirty Linen Night (presented by Iberia Bank and Hendrick’s Gin) takes place this Saturday, Aug 9th, from 6-10pm, across the 200 to 1000 blocks of Royal Street. All nine blocks will be closed to vehicular traffic from 2-11pm, but pedestrians are invited – hell, encouraged – to stroll the street. The event is put on by the Arts Council of New Orleans.

Dirty Linen started as a response/gentle tweaking of the nose of White Linen Night, held the previous week on Julia St. The idea came from Tracy Thomson, owner of Kabuki Hats; the idea was that if White Linen was Chardonnay and chic, Dirty Linen was a shot of whiskey in a funky co-op.

There’s been a lot of bleed over between the audiences at the two events in the past 13 years; White Linen has some grungies and Dirty Linen has some glitterati. They’re both damned fun. Here’s an insider take from Morgan Sasser and Lindsay Glatz, who work with the Arts Council and have been organizing the whole shebang.

Any can’t miss galleries?
I love Antieau Gallery (927 Royal). They’ve been at this for a few years. It’s a really beautiful space. There’s one female artist who works with quilt and collage concepts to design pseudo illustrative stories. They’re homey without being decorative, and they’re very unique, and they’re very inspiring. Like your inner 10-year old child given creative reign, but done tastefully.

Tresor Gallery – Just walking into the space, it’s a small space, but it’s great. It has more contemporary work, and they tend to have a younger artist clientele base, and there’s just a lot of diversity. While older Royal St galleries may focus on New Orleans – which is great – I could see these guys taking precedent in Chicago or New York.

And Angela King Gallery (241 Royal), they’re wonderful. Closer to Canal St. it’s a bright beautiful space. There’s a lot of painterly work, going all the way to more abstract, DaDa structure.

Where should I park?
If you were coming from out of town, there’s a great lot, Central Parking Lot, at N Rampart & Conti. It’s usually pretty open. There’s also good street parking along Rampart street, but walk with somebody at night.

What about food?
Through a new partnership with My House Nola, we’re adding food trucks to the mix this year. Dirty Linen visitors can dine of food truck fare from St. Clair, Fat Falafel, La Cocinta, Food Drunk, & the Cluck Truck and of course Plum Street Snoballs. With the food trucks Dirty Linen really has become a full-service evening event, you have everything you need for a New Orleans night out right on Royal Street. Come hungry, thirsty and with an eye for art you wish to purchase.

I gotta get my drink on.
New this year: Hendrick’s Gin is presenting some exciting Dirty Linen bar experiences, you may get your drink served by a monster or find your shot at the bottom of a wishing well. Certified mixologists will be serving up delicious handcrafted cocktails all along Royal Street, which is a perfect way to keep cool throughout the event.

How does one come correct to Dirty Linen?
Although wearing Dirty Linen was kind of the joke, it’s also definitely done. And I’ve seen people come out in dapper clothing. I’ve seen everything from full seersucker to burlesque dancers. It’s more creative then what you see on Julia St, more nitty gritty. Ultimately, most people will wear cool attire that keeps them breezy.

After the show it’s the…
After party. Definitely: hit up the after party at Lux Lounge at Latrobe’s (403 Royal). Dirty Linen Night revelers can enjoy a night of complimentary cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, music by DJ RQ Away, Kristal ‘M2daE’ Jones of Dancing Grounds, performers from Crescent Circus, and Big Easy Sisters along with Mr. Big Easy After Party attendees can pick up their event wristband on August 9th from 4-11pm at the Arts Council Information Booth immediately across the street from Latrobe’s.

What sets Dirty Linen apart from other Arts Council Events?
Our direct and immediate outreach to the community and the artists and the gallery owners. There are artists out there who are part of the Artist As Entrepreneur program, instructing artists on how to take their work to the next level, and it’s really inspiring to see someone who maybe participated in the arts market a year ago, who now has their own space or is part of a collective with real estate Royal St. That’s amazing.

To recap

What Dirty Linen Night, managed by the Arts Council of New Orleans in partnership with Royal Street artists and merchants.

When Saturday, August 9, 2014, from 6-10pm. After Party begins at 9pm at Lux Lounge at Latrobe’s

Where Between the 200 to 1000 blocks of Royal Street from Iberville to Ursulines

Who Presented by the Arts Council of New Orleans and sponsored by IBERIABANK and Hendricks Gin featuring more than 50 Royal Street galleries and merchants

Anything else? FREE and open to the public! For more information call the Arts Council (504) 523-1465 or go here.

Images courtesy of Marc Pagani.

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