Shop Talk: Caitlin Sullivan

Special Events Manager, Contemporary Arts Center

How did “White Linen Night” start?  “White Linen Night” started as a free block party in coordination with the August first Saturday Art Openings, driving traffic to the galleries in what was considered the slowest month. Two gallery owners at the time, Wyndy Morehead and Donna Perret, came up with the theme of white linen and martinis to celebrate the night. They were expecting a small crowd and an estimated 7,000 patrons showed up – August’s headlining event was born.

Why White Linen?  It’s the answer to “how do people dress up in warm weather?”

Do you have to wear White Linen?  No, it’s just a fun tradition.

Why do you think it’s so successful?  New Orleanians love a reason to celebrate, and this year will be the 25th anniversary of “Hancock Whitney White Linen Night,” so we’re celebrating our culture, experiencing art and building our community.

How many galleries participate?  The 11 galleries represented by the Arts District New Orleans, plus surrounding Julia Street businesses, the Ogden Museum and we at the Contemporary Arts Center all participate.

Can you tell us something about the event that we wouldn’t know?  “Hancock Whitney White Linen Night” is actually a fundraiser for the Contemporary Arts Center, and the CAC plans and executes the whole Julia Street Block Party. We also have an opening! We show our Group Exhibition, the result of an Open Call of Regional Artists, this year the show is titled “Identity Measures.”


Contemporary Arts Center, 900 Camp St.,
528-3805, CACNO.org