Happy Campers at the 2019 Met Gala

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Happy Campers at the 2019 Met Gala

Lady Gaga attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on May 6.

Lady Gaga attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on May 6.

Jamie McCarthy

Lady Gaga attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on May 6.

Jamie McCarthy

Jamie McCarthy

Lady Gaga attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on May 6.

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Isabella Koch

Features Editor

From the wise words of John Powers, Vogue contributing editor, May 6 marked the superbowl of fashion; the Met Gala. The concrete purpose of this event is to fundraise in celebration of the new exhibit from the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Held on the first Monday of May, the gala has a guest list composed of celebrities, musicians, models, designers and many more.

Every year, the gala has a different theme that aligns with the exhibit. This year it was “Camp: Notes on Fashion.” This was taken from or inspired by Susan Sontag’s 1964 essay “Notes on Camp.” The essay itself highlights 58 important factors to Camp and what follows the guidelines straight from the writers mind.

According to the Met Museum, Camp’s dress code was set to include irony, humor, parody, pastiche, artifice, theatricality and exaggeration expressed in fashion. Although the dress code is not required, those invited that do not participate often get negative backlash from the public.

“It is too easy to show up looking boring and rich with your classic gown/tux. It looks great sometimes yes, but if you are going to do that you should save is for another event like the Oscars. When attending the Met Gala it is crucial to embrace the theme considering it is a costume event or you are just ultimately serving it injustice,” senior Halle Lindholm said.

Throughout the night there were key ‘notes’ from the essay repeatedly expressed by the guests.

Summaries listed below;

  1. Camp is not in terms of beauty but expressed through artifice of stylization.
  2. All visual decor including the texture, sensuous surface, and expense of content is very camp.
  3. Camp is a particular style. It loves the exaggeration of things being what they are not.
  4. Camp is going against the stereotypical ways of one’s sex, but also exaggerating sexual and personal characteristics of an individual.
  5. Camp is a dress with three million feathers.
  6. The attempt to be extraordinary is Camp.
  7. Camp is good because it is awful.

The event is run by Anna Wintour, the director of Vogue since 1988. She has been the chair woman of the gala since 1995. This year the event was hosted by Harry Styles, Lady Gaga, Serena Williams, and Alessandro Michelle. The 2019 sponsor was Gucci.

There are hundreds of guests ranging from A-list celebrities to brand sponsors making the anticipated red carpet well-known all around the world. This year, because of the extravagant theme, the guests came prepared to stop the show. Lady Gaga executed a 15 minute, 4 costume change performance on the carpet which also included props.

Gaga was not the only one with a grand entrance. American performer Billy Porter arrived to the met gala being carried by six men. His outfit was inspired by Ancient Egypt which included a headpiece, wings, and a fully metallic gold jumpsuit. Actress Zendaya took on the classic Disney story of Cinderella. The dress was made by Tommy Hilfiger and styled by Law Roach. On the carpet, Roach acted as the fairy godmother while smoke came from his magic wand which activated Zendaya’s dress to light up.

Even without a performance, the fashion displayed shocked and glorified all viewers and guests from the gala. Designers such as Alexander Wang, Versace, Gucci, Mugler, Prada, Chanel and Moschino all dressed celebrities for the extravagant event.

Kim Kardashian-West was styled by the legendary Manfred Thierry Mugler. Mugler has been in retirement and has not designed for 20 years. However, Kim spoke in an exclusive Met Gala get ready with me video by Vogue that she and her husband Kanye, decided to contact him because they believed he encaptures Camp perfectly. The idea behind her one of a kind gown was the wet shirtdress Sophia Loren wore in the 1957 film Boy on a Dolphin, according to Vogue.

“I think the overall meaning to a designer should surround the theme Camp. The design will reflect the celebrity by who they are and what they are capable of as well as their knowledge towards fashion,” senior Alex Maxwell said when asked about the initial designing process.

Many stylists pulled pieces straight from the runway to dress their celebrities, like Jared Leto. Although, Leto used another element from the runway in his look. In the Gucci show this past Milan Fashion Week in February, director and co-host of the event Alessandro Michele crafted wax decapitated heads of each model to serve the purpose of  a clutch. Leto also appeared at the event with a wax replica of his head in this clutch form. He was then dressed in a red, long sleeve gown with diamond detailing around his shoulders and bodise.

After hours of the red carpet, the guests enter the Metropolitan Museum for dinner and a performance. This year’s performer was Cher. Although none of the inner workings of the gala are allowed to be filmed, viewers got to see a sneak peak on social media. Model Bella Hadid started a livestream on Instagram of Cher’s performance, which allowed everyone accessing her public account to see. Many guests were dancing and singing along to the performance as they enjoyed the rest of the event.

This year the gala raised a record breaking 15 million dollars according to TMZ from a met gala rep. Last year, the event raised 13 million. All proceeds go to the Metropolitan Museum which supplies most of their annual exhibitions, publications etc.

There has been no word yet of the 2020 theme, but after this extravagant year there is much anticipation for what’s next to come from Wintour.

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