"Heavenly Bodies" in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Medieval Sculpture Hall.
Photo: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Theme for the 2019 Met Gala Has Been Revealed

The Met’s Costume Institute will follow up its blockbuster “Heavenly Bodies” exhibit with a look at camp fashion

Vogue has announced that The Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute’s spring 2019 exhibition will be “Camp: Notes on Fashion.”

Andrew Bolton, the curator of the Costume Institute, said that the exhibit was inspired by and will be framed around Susan Sontag’s seminal 1964 essay “Notes on ‘Camp,’” in which she argued that camp is the “love of the unnatural: of artifice and exaggeration…style at the expense of content…the triumph of the epicene style.”

“I felt it would have a lot of cultural resonance,” Bolton said in a statement. “Camp has become increasingly more mainstream in its pluralities—political camp, queer camp, Pop camp, the conflation of high and low, the idea that there is no such thing as originality. “But I think you’ve got to be incredibly sophisticated to understand camp—look at Yves Saint Laurent and Marc Jacobs.”

Marc Jacobs Spring/Summer 2016 Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, © Johnny Dufort, 2018

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Next year’s exhibition comes on the heels of the Costume Institute’s most successful exhibit ever, 2018’s “Heavenly Bodies.” It drew more than one million visitors, making it the third most popular exhibit in the Met’s history.

“Camp’s disruptive nature and subversion of modern aesthetic values has often been trivialized, but this exhibition will reveal its profound influence on both high art and popular culture,” the Met’s director Max Hollein told Vogue.

The exhibit will explore the history of camp, going back to the French court under Louis XIV.

The co-chairs for the Gala on Monday, May 6, will be Lady Gaga, Alessandro Michele, Harry Styles, Serena Williams, and Anna Wintour. The exhibition, which will be presented in the Met Fifth Avenue’s Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Exhibition Hall May 9 through September 8, 2019. The 2019 Met Gala will take place on Monday, May 6, at the Met in New York City.

 

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