The Met gala is back and the theme for 2021 in America is a lexicon of fashion. The second part is “In America: An Anthology of fashion, but that is only coming in 2022”. The costumes will be displayed in the Anna Wintour Costume Center, on September 18. Anna Wintour is the editor-in-chief of Vogue and the director at Conde Nast.
The director Andrew Bolton is in charge of the Costume Institute and wanted to honor the support that the American fashion industry has given the institution, since its inception, 75 years ago. The theme is not just for celebration and honoring, but also a tool to reflect on the changes that have happened in the fashion industry in America and the entire country.
The theme looks at American identity and right now that is a topic that is being discussed by so many. Particularly since coming out of the Trump era, he has sown so much discontent using his hate speech about immigrants, transphobia and racism that people who would normally be proud to be American have started dissociating and letting go of any patriotic feelings towards their American identity.
So in response, there have been social and political movements that were born. This is history repeating itself, not only for the country but for the theme Andrew chose, which was used in 1998 but titled “American Ingenuity.”
Andrew believes that American fashion is going through a Renaissance. Mainly because of the pandemic and the social justice movements and political atmosphere. Many designers have responded by becoming more aware of creating clothing that does not conform to traditional gender roles.
Along with attempting to be more sustainable environmentally. Somehow, he believes they are also being more inclusive and diverse – how is a mystery. This is no surprise because fashion houses love to use these words without detailing the actual strategies.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York- where the theme will be brought alive, will be transformed into four emotions, joy, well-being, nostalgia and rebellion. It will display each emotion in a unique room.
One of the most important parts that Andrew speaks about is how people underestimate the power that fashion has with telling stories about a nation and its history. He wants to reclaim that.
For people who do not care about the specifics, the Met Gala is a chance to see their favorite celebrities dress up in garments that they would not usually wear. It is about the face beat and the hair. Which is also just fine. Sometimes details ruin the experience and take the fun out of it. The funds from the gala go to the Costume Institute.
This year however because of covid the affair will not be as grand as we expect. Those attending will be part of a smaller group and adhering to covid rules, such as social distancing.