Style The Costume Institute Announces a Two-Part Exhibition on American Fashion for 2021 and 2022
Giorgio Armani on Fashion’s Future—And Why He’s Not Slowing Down
Still thriving after a five-decade career, Giorgio Armani, in a rare interview, speaks from the heart about an industry he loves—and how it needs to change.“I’m ready for the runway, and I don’t have the clothes,” Mr. Armani says in his office, surrounded by portraits of himself, during his first in-person interview since the coronavirus paralyzed both his industry and his hometown of Milan more than a year ago. In another, the 86-year-old says, he dreams he is the central character of a play and starts singing. And then there is the recurring nightmare—Mr. Armani perched on a cliff edge over a daunting precipice—that has haunted him throughout the pandemic.
Homegrown fashion is the focus of the Costume Institute’s upcoming blockbuster, a two-part exhibition to be presented over the course of 2021 and 2022 in two areas of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Part one, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion,” will open in the Anna Wintour Costume Center on September 18, 2021, and will remain on display when “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” opens on May 5, 2022 in the period rooms of the American Wing. Both shows will run through September 5, 2022.
Andrew Bolton, the Wendy Yu Curator in Charge of the Costume Institute, has an uncanny sense of timing. Despite the advance planning needed to organize an exhibition, he always seems to land on a topical theme, and stateside the subject of American identity is topic number one.
Kathryn Hahn had to wear a cooling suit underneath her 'WandaVision' costume because they shot at the height of summer
Filming took place while the California wildfires were raging. Kathryn Hahn's heavy "WandaVision" costume didn't make things any cooler.Although the costume looked great, it did have its downfalls. Hahn, who was speaking to Insider about her new partnership with cleaning brand 9 Elements, told Insider she was forced to wear a cooling suit underneath the many layers of Agatha's costume.
This “double play” first started coming into focus in 2018 as the curator simultaneously was planning how his department would participate in the museum’s 150th anniversary, celebrated last year, and the Costume Institute’s 75th, this year. “I wanted both shows to be collection focused exhibitions,” he told Vogue. “,” last year’s exhibition, did that broadly; in contrast Bolton looked to a specific and “in a way neglected” area of the collection for the two-part “In America” show. The curator settled on the theme for two reasons: “The main one was the fact that the American fashion community has been supporting us for 75 years, really since the beginning of the Costume Institute, so I wanted to acknowledge its support, and also to celebrate and reflect upon American fashion.”
Shanghai Fashion Week: Designers relish full schedule of physical shows
With runway shows around the world still impaired by the pandemic, Shanghai became one of the only cities to host a full physical fashion week for the upcoming season.The thrill and anticipation of runway shows has been sorely missed across the fashion world in the past year. But while events in Europe and North America are still impaired by the ongoing pandemic, it was business as usual in China.
It’s a subject that Bolton felt needed revisiting, both in terms of the museum’s calendar—1998’s “American Ingenuity” was the last big exhibition to cover the theme—and because the industry has changed so much, in particular in response to the political and social justice movements of the last several years.
“I think that the emphasis on conscious creativity was really consolidated during the pandemic and the social justice movements,” Bolton said. “And I’ve been really impressed by American designers’ responses to the social and political climate, particularly around issues of body inclusivity and gender fluidity, and I’m just finding their work very, very self-reflective. I really do believe that American fashion is undergoing a Renaissance. I think young designers in particular are at the vanguard of discussions about diversity and inclusion, as well as sustainability and transparency, much more so than their European counterparts, maybe with the exception of the English designers.”
André Leon Talley Explains the Significance of the Met Gala
André Leon Talley breaks down everything there is to know about the Met Gala before it begins.This year’s theme will celebrate the best of American fashion, and marks the Costume Institute’s 75th anniversary. Before the Met Gala makes its grand return in September, however—it was postponed last year due to COVID-19—the world will be eagerly waiting to see what the celebrity guests will be wearing on the red carpet, so it’s worth refreshing your memory on all the pertinent details before the red carpet is rolled out.
Home: A Short History of an Idea, a book by Witold Rybczynski that focuses on the qualities rather than the functionality of rooms, helped Bolton construct a framework for “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion,” for which the Anna Wintour Costume Center will be transformed into an imaginary house. Each room will represent a particular emotive quality (well-being, joy, rebellion, nostalgia) and be occupied by an ancestor, and, if you will, related family. “So for the porch, which is warmth,” explained Bolton, “the idea would be to have perhaps Bonnie Cashin’s blanket coat that we pair with André Walker’s coat made from Hudson Bay blankets. In the garden, which is joy, the idea is to have a Mainbocher printed floral dress with the Oscar de la Renta dress that Taylor Swift wore to the Grammys.”
Bolton sees fashion as “a living art form, an emotional art form,” one that’s “all about innovation and reinvention.” The American dream is similarly one of self-invention, yet with its roots in sportswear, it is usually described in terms of its practicality and utility—fashion with a lower case, rather than capital-F. “I think that in the past a lot of descriptions about American fashion focused on the fact that it’s non-narrative and it’s not about stories, and that’s diminishing the emotional side of American fashion. So part of the idea of the exhibition is to give American fashion its due, to give back its storytelling abilities.”
Incredible German landmarks seen from the skies
Germany is home to some world-famous landmarks from cathedrals to chalk cliffs, with many of them instantly recognizable. But things look a little different from up high, revealing details rarely seen by visitors and showcasing the sheer scale and sumptuousness of castles and palaces. Here are some of the most gorgeous shots taken of German landmarks from the sky.
The stories Bolton wants to tell in the second part of the exhibition, “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” are ones that address the subject of inclusivity. “Who gets to be American?” was a question posed at’s spring 2020 show, and it will be addressed at the Met as well. “An Anthology of Fashion” will explore unfinished American stories in the museum’s period rooms, examining the history of fashion in the context of race, gender, and materiality, while also considering who was able to inhabit the rooms and who was barred from doing so.
A Quaker Meeting room, for example, will be the site in which stereotypes of American fashion are examined through the work of Claire McCardell. A panoramic mural of Versailles by John Vanderlyn will form the “set” of the 1973 “Battle of Versailles,” a charity event at which American designers vied against their French counterparts, whose work has traditionally been described using a more emotive lexicon. Also on view will be “freeze frames,” films inspired by the vignettes and made by noted American directors. “In America” presents an opportunity to find new ways of speaking about fashion and identity in the U.S.
Stylish and sustainable: Ascot unveils its official 2021 style guide
This year's Royal Ascot Style Guide, in association with Swiss watch brand Longines, is keen to demonstrate to racing followers around the world that the Royal Meeting is about looking your best - and that doesn't necessarily mean you have to buy something brand new. With a focus on sustainability and the art of conscious shopping, garments featured include those sourced from charity shops, nearly new boutiques, vintage emporiums and re-sale websites, as well as British and sustainable fashion labels.
For those looking for more reasons to wave the flag, thewill return this year. More than a fancy dress party, the benefit evening generates the majority of the Costume Institute’s funding. Pending government guidelines, a slightly smaller celebration is planned for September 13, 2021, timed to coincide with the close of what will hopefully be an in-person New York Fashion Week. The event will then return to regular scheduling—the first Monday in May—in 2022.
The exhibitions are made possible by Instagram. Additional support is provided by Condé Nast.
Logomania Is Coming for Your Face .
Chanel and Gucci are offering face jewels in monogram crystal. Would you wear it?This isn’t just about the new Prada triangle earring or Balenciaga’s logo shoulder-grazer. Both Gucci and Chanel have shown monogrammed facial jewelry in their resort 2022 collections, with tiny interlocked Gs dangling from a septum piercing and a CC charm hanging from a faux lip ring. The piercings are definitely fake—no commitment necessary—and definitely noticeable. Rendered as they are in crystal, the intention seems to be to draw attention to previously unloved areas of the face, as well as to add a punkish influence to otherwise elegant fashion.