The Absolut event at the Carbon 12 gallery was an interesting contrast. Harsh gallery lighting lit up pieces of original Absolut art, while dresses with long legs under them swished around softly, d’oeuvres and drink in hand.

Absolut can not legally advertise in the UAE, and so decided to engage audiences a bit differently. Absolut art by artists worldwide was insured and shipped out from Sweden, the brand’s home country. All the pieces on show were genuine except for the replica Andy Warhols -apparently insuring the real article had been a nightmare.

The opening night welcomed the hoity toity, creme de la creme socialites. Or perhaps perfectly normal, sensible people – I wouldn’t know.  The second (last night) was for the creative types – artists, designers, ad agency sorts, etc. Later will traipse in the F&B people, post which the exhibition will be thrown open to all and sundry. The free bar will however be mysteriously absent.

It’s well worth a visit – just to realize all over again the intimacy between art and consumer brands.