The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute is open for another year with 2015’s exhibition China: Through the Looking Glass, on view from May 7-August 16. The Costume Institute’s annual gala took place last night, May 4, and what a star-clad celebration it was!
The benefit was chaired by Silas Chou and Co-Chairs Jennifer Lawrence, Gong Li, Marissa Mayer, Wendi Murdoch, and Anna Wintour. This benefit funds much of the exhibitions and programming for the year in the Costume Institute and is probably the most feted party the Met throws.
Through the Looking Glass features over 100 works in the Chinese galleries and the Anna Wintour Costume Center. According to the Met’s website, “the exhibition explores the impact of Chinese aesthetics on Western fashion and how China has fueled the fashionable imagination for centuries. In this collaboration between The Costume Institute and the Department of Asian Art, high fashion is juxtaposed with Chinese costumes, paintings, porcelains, and other art, including films, to reveal enchanting reflections of Chinese imagery.”
Celebrities and dignitaries flooded the Met last night as they showed their support for the Met’s esteemed collection of fashion and fine art. On the runway were seen Kim Kardashian in Roberto Cavalli; Anne Hathaway in Ralph Lauren; Bee Shaffer in one of the few Asian-themed dresses on the red carpet, by Alexander McQueen; Kate Hudson in a golden Michael Kors; Rihanna in a furred yellow Guo Pei, not unlike an empress’s robes; and Sarah Jessica Parker in an H+M dress with a fiery red and silver headdress. Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour arrived in a Chanel Couture gown of orange flowers.
As celebrities traversed the galleries, they discovered a wide array of works, from film to fashion to decorative arts. This exhibition represents the Costume Institute’s “first collaboration with another curatorial department since 2006.” With the Chinese galleries directly above the Costume Center, the connection was easy. Director and CEO of the Met Thomas P. Campbell was proud of the exhibition, noting
“I am excited about this partnership between these two forward-thinking departments which reveals provocative new insights into the West’s fascination with China.”
He continued, “The artistic direction of acclaimed filmmaker Wong Kar Wai takes visitors on a cinematic journey through our galleries, where high fashion is shown alongside masterworks of Chinese art.”
A catalogue, concert, art-making workshops and other events and items are available in connection to this exhibition. The Met is located at 1000 Fifth Avenue and is open every day of the week with late nights on Friday and Saturday. Suggested admission is $25 per adult, but feel free to simply give $1 – especially if you know you’ll be back again! If you see the exhibition, let us know what you thought by leaving a comment in the box below or by tweeting to @egyptologist.