By- DeoVonte “Deo” Means
…It may be the Met Ball, but it’s Anna’s Party…The Super Bowl of social fashion events….
This past Monday, social media was in a doozy. Even the least most connected with fashion perhaps found himself intrigued¸ if not giving a play-by-play of the fashions slowly produced at “The Met Gala.” The Met Gala has been a social fixture for an intimate group of friends of mines for years. This year we decided to connect for the festivities and check out Andrew Rossi’s new Met Gala documentary, The First Monday In May. Released just week’s prior to the actual gala, it has already gained legendary status featuring Anna Wintour, Karl Lagerfield, John Galliano, Jean Paul Gaultier and Wendy Murdoch! Special attention is paid to Alexander McQueen and the iconic Savage Beauty exhibit. Only a couple minutes into the movie and I immediately realized why Anna Wintour is so profound. If you thought Meryl Streep’s monologue in The Devil Wears Prada about Cerulean and the effect of fashion on society was profound, wait till you hear the real Anna Wintour speak! Her words are transcendent!! She immediately speaks on the popular question of “is fashion really art” and “does fashion belong in a museum like the Met?” Before we can attempt to digest the question, we first have to take in consideration that the Metropolitan Museum of Art houses the largest collection of fashion in the world. Each year it features a headlining exhibition centered on a central theme and pieces centered on that theme from the most revered and respected houses in the world. The Met ball serves as not only the debut opening for the exhibit, but also a fundraising event which to date serves as one of its most profitable fundraisers in its entire history.
Anna acknowledges the wide spread notion of the 19th century idea of art as painting, sculpture and architecture. She even nods to the idea of fashion being perceived as trivial and frivolous. But fashion is art because it’s governed by the same fundamental principals of any other fine art form. That being concept, principals, aesthetic, and the most refined techniques. Clothing is indeed a form of artistic expression that we all embrace but not all fashion is art! Some is just commercial but the true definition of art has become more elastic in modern times. Fashion is something transcendent that can be expressed in what you wear. It embraces a notion that some may view fashion in a superficial aspect but underestimate the ability for fashion to be art and express what’s going on in society today! Designers do indeed work from a narrative that embraces the complexity of the story-line while manifesting a continuity of mobile society.
The documentary not only touched on the celebrity of the Met Ball, but went into detail about the intricate thought and planning process that goes into executing this event yearly. The Met Ball is produced as a kind of theater and even the finest detail is discussed and meticulously vetted by Anna Wintour and her team. The strategic goal of the production is to remove the traditional formalness from the equation and replace it with a mindset of being a celebration of the multi-cultural dimensions of our woven society. It’s sort of a giant aquarium with many uniquely beautiful fish. When high fashion is paired with celebrity, it becomes something bigger than both individual entities. It becomes transcendent! Each celebrity is paired with a designer and that designer is charged presenting that persons aesthetic in combination with the identity of the brand. The finished product is a charitable night that features some of the legends of our time in the world’s best haute couture…Brilliant!!!! If you haven’t checked out the documentary, download it on I-Tunes….You won’t regret it…..Cheers to a good time…..Deo