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The Scene: Freer Sackler’s decadent “Birds of a Feather” gala

Artist Darren Waterson and actress Gillian Anderson outside the Freer Sackler Galleries. (Erin Schaff/For The Washington Post)

The ornate gala invitation instructed guests to “strut like a peacock,” and Washington’s elite took the command to heart.

Wealthy art lovers, diplomats, philanthropists and socialites turned out in lavish gala attire and a dash of feathers Friday evening for the Smithsonian Freer Sackler’s Birds of a Feather Gala. The evening celebrated the opening of the exhibit “Peacock Room Remix” and painter Darren Waterston’s installation, “Filthy Lucre,” which reimagines the famed Peacock Room by James McNeill Whistler as a decadent ruin.

The evening was co-hosted by actress Gillian Anderson, a friend of the artist for 20 years.Guests honored excess with a private after-hours cocktail reception at the Sackler, followed by dinner and dancing at the Andrew Mellon Auditorium and a special performance by the indie-rock band Betty.