The annual fundraising gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York is the storm’s eye on the first Monday of May every year. With artists and actors gracing the red carpet, the event has unparalleled grandeur and fame. As new creations unfold, there's only a few that make it to the best list
By: Nikita Vivek Pawar
Posted on: May 7, 2019
In the year 1964, Susan Sontag published an essay on breaking the cultural and social definitions of beauty and creativity. ‘Notes on Camp’ was an expression for a creative spirit, love for some unnatural or artificial, and completely extravagant. "The essence of Camp is its love of the unnatural: of artifice and exaggeration," she wrote in her essay. She became one of the first writers to acknowledge and write about the uninhibited manifestation of art and culture. Later, Camp became a gay slur for effeminate boys for their theatrical expression. But with time changing for good and designers like Demna Gavasalia, who rose to fame with Vetements, and who also heads Balenciaga, Moschino’s Creative Director Jeremey Scott and Jean-Paul Gaultier have brought the ethos of Camp in the luxury market. The camp is now considered as an ingenious yet different perspective.
In all seriousness, Camp is not for the light-hearted. The love for artificial and prolific and an exhilarated expression is not everyone’s cup of tea. With ‘Camp: Notes to Fashion’ being the theme for this year’s MET Gala, we expected only three things: extravagance, creativity and expression, and we certainly have not been let down. The MET Gala evening was a goosebump-inducing night with haute couture finesse and brilliance. Here are the top 10 celebrity looks that took our breath away with their interpretation of ‘Camp’.
The 22-year-old actor and singer truly had her Cinderella moment at the Met Gala. She wore a grey and white corseted dress and wore her hair blonde in a French twist with a black choker. What followed was a beautiful theatrical of her fairy godmother, and stylist, Law Roach waving his magic wand, and the smoke showed its effect on Zendaya’s Tommy Hilfiger dress, turning it into a glowing outfit. She carried a pumpkin-carriage clutch and left behind a ‘glass slipper’ on the Met Gala stairs. Once inside she changed into a pink dress like the one Cinderella wore once the magic wore off.
2. Cardi B
Cardi B has always been synonymous to exorbitant and spendthrift fashion and style. The 26-year-old rapper and singer wore a Thom Browne outfit that required an entourage of 10 attendants. The ensemble was a head-to-toe ruby red corseted dress with feathers and a velvet quilted trail which took more than 2,000 hours to execute. The headgear was encrusted with red beads, the bodice accentuated her curves and there were red beads where her nipples would be (only Cardi B can pull that off). The look was truly epochal when the American sensation climbed the stairs draped in a pink carpet.
3. Billy Porter
Imagine the Sun God of Egypt descending from his chariot. Billy Porter’s entry at the MET Gala was certainly one of the most unexpected spectacles. After Mr. Porter’s stunning casual entry at the Oscars earlier this year, the actor took it to another level when he dressed up like an Ancient Egyptian Pharaoh avatar carried by six shirtless men adorned in gold as well. The Pose actor wore a bejewelled bodysuit by the Blonds with 10-foot wings and Giuseppe Zaotti custom gold-leaf shoes with jewels from Andreoli and Oscar. Mr. Porter adorned a 24-karat gold headpiece as well.
4. Priyanka Chopra Jonas
Amalgamating the east and west has always been very important to the Quantico actress. This year’s MET Gala was also the first time Priyanka Chopra Jonas accompanied her husband Nick Jonas. The duo wore Dior custom ensemble, Ms. Chopra in a feathered custom dress and Mr. Jonas in a pristine white suit. The actress opted for afro curls with a crown and bold makeup to complete her look. Bold, stylish!
5. Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga has always been about experimenting. Remember the Valentino lavender dress for the Golden Globes? At the MET Gala too, she was the most extravagant of them all, as she entered in a huge hot pink Brandon Maxwell dress with a trail, matching the bow on her head. She stripped that to reveal a strapless black gown with a smaller silhouette and accompanied with a black umbrella. The next layer was a bodycon fuchsia dress and the finale was the lingerie with fishnet tights. Apart from her dresses, the next best thing was her makeup. And the incredibly brazen show of course, which only Lady Gaga could have pulled off!
6. Jared Leto
The Suicide Squad actor brought the Camp themed Gala to a new level with his bizarre fashion statement. Mr. Leto wore a full sleeved red silk Gucci gown embellished with jewels. But what stole the show was the decapitated wax-like version of himself he carried as a clutch. The decapitated head accessory debuted at the Milan Fashion Week this February.
7. Janelle Monae
Janelle Monae is the life-size version of Picasso and Dali paintings. Alexandra Mandelkorn amalgamated the painting references with love for the unnatural and over-the-top. The result was the unparalleled and distinct Christian Siriano custom balloon hipped outfit with a blinking eye with huge eyelashes (it actually blinked thanks to smooth technology) on one breast. The dress featured a button up on one side with a red lip, while the other side showcased the robotic eye with the Barbie pink flush.
8. Celine Dion
The Titanic singer chose an Oscar de la Renta’s dress for the annual fundraiser. Designed by Fernando Garcia, the fringe dress with feather hat completed the look and created an illusion of the brightest on the pink carpet of the Met Gala. The dress took more than 3,000 hours to complete.
9. Katy Perry
Katy Perry was the Lumiere of the MET Gala this year. The pop singer wore a Moschino outfit. Dressed as a chandelier. And the best part was that the bulbs actually glowed! The singer also wore a similar headpiece and glittery heels to give it a cohesive look. As for the after party, she changed into a giant hamburger from Moschino again and turned the headgear into a toothpick to match the costume with matching shoes. Talk about creativity!
10. Michael Urie
Michael Urie’s look not only followed the theme but also encouraged gender fluidity. The ‘Ugly Betty’ actor wore a gender-bending creation by Christian Siriano with a half pink tulle ballgown and the other half a pinstripe suit. The actor did a beard and a no-makeup look on one side while the other half was full glam. He also styled his hair according to the sides. He was definitely the best dressed, and the most daring, at the MET Gala 2019.