The situation in the Middle East contributed to the fanfare of interest in the visit of First Lady of Turkey Semra Ozal, wife of President Turgut Ozal, to Los Angeles last week. Turkey is Iraq's neighbor to the north.
Semra Ozal was feted widely. On Monday, Sema Emre, wife of Turkish Consul Gen. Mehmet Emre, hosted a tea for 50 at the consulate in Hancock Park. The same evening, the Emres entertained at a reception on the occasion of the 67th anniversary of the foundation of the Turkish Republic.
Then Tuesday, picking up on American-style charity benefits, Sema Emre hosted a buffet luncheon and Turkish leather fashion show for more than 100, sending proceeds from $100 tickets to the Children's Cancer and Immunology Research at UCLA. That's the work under the direction of Dr. Richard Gatti, who was quickly on the scene as a cancer specialist after the Chernobyl disaster.
The first lady is the founder and president of the Foundation for the Advancement and Recognition of Turkish Women, which aims at equality in working rights and retirement for women in her country. Before arriving here, she was in San Francisco for the Craft and Folk Art Museum's exhibition of an old Turkish house. Now she's off to Tokyo for the coronation of the Japanese emperor.
AU COURANT: Also concerned with the Middle East, the Res Publica Board of Governors and Claremont McKenna College are inviting prominent alums to a luncheon with Abdlatif Y. Al-Hamad, Claremont class of '60, Wednesday in the Crystal Room of the Biltmore. He's director general of the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, and he promises to speak on "The Gulf Crisis."
ART GALAXY: Painter Ed Ruscha was the guest of honor at an intimate luncheon in the Museum of Contemporary Art boardroom hosted by MOCA director Richard Koshalek.
However, the host was missing. He had to meet a publishing deadline for the Ad Reinhardt catalogue that MOCA is producing with the Museum of Modern Art, and made an urgent trip to New York, leaving Fred Nicholas, MOCA's chairman, to the toasts.
With the dean of contemporary dealers, Leo Castelli of New York, at the head of the table, and Jim Corcoran, Betty Koshalek, Doug Cramer, Dr. Judd Marmor and MOCA's Ericka Clark there, the conversation covered Ruscha's opening at MOCA Dec. 7; Castelli's receiving the Independent Curators Inc. first "Leo" lion sculpture (a copy of the lion at the entrance to the New York Public Library), and Cramer's black-tie sit-down dinner that same night for dealer Jerry Blum's 60th birthday (an affair for 50, including Roy Lichtenstein and Ellsworth Kelly).
Other topics were the post-Christmas traditional holiday gathering at Cramer's residence on St. Martin in the Caribbean, with numerous friends, including Castelli, congregating at the popular hotel La Samanna, and the recent terrorist slashing of a Lichtenstein painting.
Koshalek is curating the Ruscha show, which has also been shown in Rotterdam, Paris, Barcelona and London.
TOASTS: The champagne flowed for the harvest moon dedication dinner of the Byron Dick Seaver Theater at Pomona College. About 300, including donor Richard Carlton Seaver, '43, reminisced about his late father, Byron Dick Seaver, '08, and his love of theater.
In the group were architect Stanley Boles, Russell and Jeanne Smith, Kathleen Armour and Pomona trustees Joan C. Hanley, Ferdinand Fernandez, Helen Pashgian and Robert Tranquada.
STRINGS: Strings were attached for the Young Musicians Foundation gala at the Beverly Hilton. Brass, winds, percussion, too--all for honoree Carl Reiner. But, singer John Denver got a standing ovation, too. And the audience thought 13-year-old flutist Gregory Jefferson formidable.
Entertainment notables dominated--Dick Van Dyke, Pierre Cossette, Rob Reiner, Donald O'Connor, Ava and Chuck Fries, Barbara Rush and Edgar and Marge Scherick.
Henry Mancini received the YMF first Magic Baton Award.
A WEEKEND: The second annual tribute to William Holden for the William Holden Wildlife Foundation and the Living Desert wildlife and botanical park in Palm Springs takes up the weekend Nov. 16-18, according to Stefanie Powers, president. A highlight is the Saturday night Marquis Hotel (Palm Springs) Diamond Safari Party. On Sunday at Eldorado Polo Club, Cartier sponsors the polo and picnic luncheon . . . .
We also hear that El Paseo in Palm Desert is about to be transformed into a world-class area of fine shops and couture salons--a la Worth Street in Palm Beach and Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.
NOTEWORTHY: Jean Smith and the family of the late U. S. Atty. Gen. William French Smith, good friend to many and favorite dinner partner, gathered closest friends for a luncheon at the Valley Hunt Club after his memorial service at San Marino Community Presbyterian Church on Nov. 2.
PAST PERFECT: First Century Families gathered at the Beverly Wilshire where sisters Ellen Gibbon Bergman and Liz Strange reminisced about their grandfather, T. E. Gibbon, and told of dragging unopened trunks from home to home to warehouse over decades, and then finding them filled with historic treasures. Luncheon chairman Gwen Lundy, interpreted the message: "Save everything" . . .
John and Virginia Cushman hosted the Cal Marching Band and UC Berkeley Chancellor Chang-Lin Tien at the annual Southland band benefit. Pat and Richard Diroll fed 160 hungry Bears at their home next door . . .
Standing room only accommodated the crowd of friends and buyers at the Butterfield & Butterfield auction this week for the sale (in excess of $1.4 million) of property from the late acclaimed decorator Kalef Alaton. Melrose Place antique dealer John Nelson was a heavy buyer.