Met Gala goes even MORE woke as event ‘will explore themes of American politics and identity’

The Met Gala is coming back. Actually, twice, and it is likely to be the wokest event in memory as the event’s fashion designers are set to explore themes including American politics and identity.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced Monday that the annual high-wattage celebration of both fashion and celebrity – canceled last year because of the pandemic – will return in person, first in September, then again in 2022 in its usual slot of the first Monday in May.

Amanda Gorman, the 23-year-old poet who performed at President Biden’s inauguration, has reportedly been approached to host the show alongside Tom Ford.  

Andrew Bolton, the head curator in charge of the museum’s Costume Institute, told The New York Times that this year’s event will highlight the diversity among American fashion designers.

Lady Gaga arrives for the 2019 Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. The next gala will be split into two parts and will explore themes including American identity and politics

Amanda Gorman, the 23-year-old poet who performed at President Biden's inauguration, has reportedly been approached to host the show alongside Tom Ford

Amanda Gorman, the 23-year-old poet who performed at President Biden’s inauguration, has reportedly been approached to host the show alongside Tom Ford

One of the collaborators of this year's exhibition will be Franklin Leonard, an African American film executive and the founder of The Black List, a selection of unproduced screenplays, some of which have gone on to win awards

Bradford Young, the cinematographer behind Selma and When They See Us, has also been brought on a collaborator

One of the collaborators of this year’s exhibition will be Franklin Leonard (left), an African American film executive and the founder of The Black List, a selection of unproduced screenplays, some of which have gone on to win awards. Bradford Young (right), the cinematographer behind Selma and When They See Us, has also been brought on a collaborator

‘We very consciously wanted this to be a celebration of the American fashion community, which suffered so much during the pandemic,’ said Bolton.

‘I think American fashion is undergoing a renaissance, with young American designers at the vanguard of discussions around diversity, inclusion, sustainability and conscious creativity. 

‘I find it incredibly exciting.’

The two exhibitions will delve into what it means to be American today as well as ponder racial and political developments over the past year.

According to the Times, Bolton will seek to change the ‘stereotype of American fashion’ while telling the ‘stories of designers that have often been overlooked and forgotten.’

The galas, a ‘more intimate’ version scheduled for September 13 of this year and a larger one on May 2, 2022, will launch a two-part exhibition, to be on view for almost a year.

Jared Leto attends The 2019 Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City

Jared Leto attends The 2019 Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City

‘In America: A Lexicon of Fashion,’ opening on September 18, will celebrate the 75th anniversary of the museum’s Costume Institute and ‘explore a modern vocabulary of American fashion,’ the museum said. 

Part two, ‘In America: An Anthology of Fashion,’ will open in the museum’s popular American Wing period rooms on May 5, 2022, and will explore American fashion, with collaborations with film directors, by ‘presenting narratives that relate to the complex and layered histories of those spaces.’ 

Both parts will close on September 5, 2022.

There was no immediate word on who the celebrity hosts, or chairs, would be for the galas, traditionally a heady mix of luminaries from fashion, music, film, TV, sports and other arenas. 

The first gala in September will be smaller, and held in accordance with government coronavirus guidelines. 

The second next May is intended to be larger, in line with previous galas which typically hold about 550 guests.

The gala is a major fundraiser, providing the Costume Institute with its primary source of funding. 

In 2020, the gala was canceled but fans were invited to engage in a social media challenge to recreate favorite red-carpet looks.

‘Fashion is both a harbinger of cultural shifts and a record of the forces, beliefs, and events that shape our lives,’ said Max Hollein, director of the Met, in a statement.

‘This two-part exhibition will consider how fashion reflects evolving notions of identity in America and will explore a multitude of perspectives through presentations that speak to some of the complexities of history with powerful immediacy.’

The first gala in September will be smaller, and held in accordance with government coronavirus guidelines. The second next May is intended to be larger, in line with previous galas which typically hold about 550 guests. Solange Knowles is seen above at the 2018 event in New York City

The first gala in September will be smaller, and held in accordance with government coronavirus guidelines. The second next May is intended to be larger, in line with previous galas which typically hold about 550 guests. Solange Knowles is seen above at the 2018 event in New York City

As always, the exhibits will be the work of Bolton. 

One of the collaborators of this year’s exhibition will be Franklin Leonard, an African American film executive and the founder of The Black List, a selection of unproduced screenplays, some of which have gone on to win awards. 

Bradford Young, the cinematographer behind Selma and When They See Us, has also been brought on a collaborator. 

Leonard and Young were brought on due to the fact that the institute’s curators are all white, according to the Times. 

‘Over the past year, because of the pandemic, the connections to our homes have become more emotional, as have those to our clothes,’ Bolton said in his own statement. 

‘For American fashion, this has meant an increased emphasis on sentiment over practicality.’

He said that in accordance with this shift, Part One of the exhibition will establish ‘a modern vocabulary of American fashion based on the expressive qualities of clothing as well as deeper associations with issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion.’

As for Part Two, it will ‘further investigate the evolving language of American fashion through a series of collaborations with American film directors who will visualize the unfinished stories inherent in The Met’s period rooms.’

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