The best (and worst) looks from the 2024 MET Gala

The best (and worst) looks from the 2024 MET Gala
The best (and worst) looks from the 2024 MET Gala

With the “Garden of Time” as their inspiration, celebrities flocked to the Metropolitan Museum gala on Monday, the unmissable New York event at the crossroads of fashion, popular culture and philanthropy.

Dark suit with highlighted seams and large hat evoking the Tudor era, the prince of reggaeton Bad Bunny set the tone, black floral bouquet in hand, when he walked the steps of the prestigious museum backing onto Central Park.

Actress Zendaya, dressed as the Puerto Rican artist by John Galliano (Maison Margelia), appeared in a bias-cut dress in electric blue and emerald tones, veil and delicate feather on the head. Then we saw her again in another look, a dress with a long black train and a hat overflowing with roses.

Zendaya, 27, and Bad Bunny, 30, co-chaired the evening, along with Jennifer Lopez, whose transparent and sparkling Schiaparelli dress outlined wings, Marvel actor Chris Hemsworth and the high priestess of event, Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.

Bad Bunny felt “blessed.” “Thanks to a dream for which I worked, other (dreams) that I had not even imagined also came true,” launched the artist, one of the most streamed in the world.

Sands of time

During the evening, a few hundred pro-Palestinian demonstrators approached the famous 5th avenue where the museum stands, shouting “viva Palestina”. The police, who arrested several people, kept them at a distance behind barriers, AFP journalists noted.

Behind other barriers, hundreds of fans tried to catch a glimpse of the celebrities. Some probably disappointed because Rihanna, one of the most anticipated, did not show up.

With the theme of “sleeping beauties”, and the dress code of “Garden of Time”, an allusion to a short story by science fiction writer JG Ballard on ephemeral beauty, the creations placed the emphasis on nature.

Flowers were everywhere. Embroidered, in the shapes of ruffles, on the trains of dresses, in ornaments, we have seen them on the actress Uma Thurman, the rapper Nicki Minaj, the singers Erykah Badu, Camila Cabello, or the most listened to French-speaking artist in the world, Aya Nakamura, platinum blonde hair and shiny, sensual dress.

South African singer Tyla’s strapless Balmain dress, evocative of the sands of time – right down to the hourglass accessory – was sculpted so closely to her body that she had to be carried up the steps.

TikTok and AI

For extravagance, we could count on Lana Del Rey, whose dark branches rising on her dress held a canopy-shaped tulle veil above her head. Or on the rapper Cardi B, whose train required nine porters in tuxedos. She compared it to a “black rose.”

The carpet was also walked by the boss of TikTok, Shou Zi Chew, whose video application ultra-popular with young people, but in the sights of the American authorities, is sponsoring the evening.

The purpose of the Met Gala is to finance the fashion department of the prestigious museum, “The Costume Institute”. According to the New York Times, a seat at the dinner this year costs $75,000, an entire table costs $350,000 and the previous edition brought in some $22 million.

The event, which is held on the first Monday in May and accompanies the opening of the major annual exhibition of the “Costume Institute”, unveiled to the press in the morning.

This year, the Met took advantage of technology to “awaken” its “sleeping beauties”, in other words the most precious, original and sometimes fragile pieces from an extraordinary collection of 33,000 garments and accessories recounting several centuries of history of the fashion.

Like this satin silk ball gown adorned with embroidery and embellished with chiffon from the house of Worth which can no longer be dressed on a mannequin. The 1887 piece is shown flat, but it has also been reconstructed in computer-generated images and comes to life again, with ruffles deployed, in the form of a hologram.

Throughout the pieces, immersion is achieved through noises, those of an Alexander McQueen dress made entirely of shells, the sounds of which have been recreated. But also through smells, like that of menthol cigarettes exhaling from a mid-20th century hat. To achieve this, the odorous molecules were isolated through an extraction process and reproduced in tubes that the visitor can smell.

The museum also collaborated with generative artificial intelligence specialist OpenAI to allow visitors to chat with 20th-century New York socialite, Natalie Potter, about the impressive cathedral-train dress she wore on the day of his marriage on December 4, 1930.

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