The decline of the Met (Editorial)


Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

THEMATIC ENTRANCE: Kylie Jenner attends The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute benefit gala celebrating the opening of the “In America: An Anthology of Fashion” exhibition on Monday, May 2, 2022, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

The flashing lights of cameras and thousand-dollar gowns are what makes the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s annual Met Gala, one of the biggest fashion events of the year. always has big stars and A-list celebrities. There are extravagant outfits, unique themes, and an uncomfortable amount of paparazzi. The themes for the gala are nothing short of creative, giving the guests the opportunity to show off their sense of fashion. 

Despite the detailed and descriptive theme, it seems like many of the Gala’s attendees ignored these aesthetics. Over the years, the number of participants on theme has decreased. For example, in 2019 the theme was ‘Camp: Notes on Fashion’. The concept was inspired by Susan Sontag’s essay “Notes on Camp” (1964), which covers what “camp” is and why people were talking about it. Camp is a term used to describe a style that is “over the top” or exaggerated. This led to the 2019 met gala theme, which gave more bad than good.

This year, the theme was “gilded glamor”. Like many other years, the majority of the guests didn’t follow the theme. It was almost like they didn’t know what the ‘gilded era’ was. The outfits were almost randomized and all over the place. Although it could be debated whether they were high fashion or not, it’s obvious that most weren’t on theme. The guests who were wearing the outfits aren’t to be blamed, it’s the designers who are at fault for straying from the theme. It could be said that an easier concept could’ve been chosen, but a simple google search could have also been done by the designers. 

But what is the “gilded era”? This period in U.S. history lasted from 1870 to the 1900s.The fashion of that era included boned skirts, corsets, big feather hats, and dressing gowns. Some met gala guests took a different approach to the theme. Blake Lively mimicked the Statue of Liberty, which was gifted to the U.S. in 1881. That still follows the theme and takes a creative look on the prompt.

The theme of “gilded glamor” is also inspired by the second part of Metropolitan Museum of Art’s exhibit “America: A Lexicon in Fashion”. This new exhibit in the museum also inspired the 2021 met gala theme, which was all inspired by American fashion. The “gilded glamor” theme tied in with American fashion, but in a different time period. 

Overall, the Met Gala has started to be less and less impressive. Hopefully next year’s gala will end the decline and show off the theme. We could all use something to cheer us up and give us something to look forward to.

Disclaimer: Articles designated as “Editorial” represent the views and opinions of the author, not the 2021-2022 Periscope staff, CHS/CASD administration, or the CHS student body.