Met Gala’s Return Reflects Gen Z’s Rise

From left to right: Timothée Chalamet, Rihanna, Iman, Megan Thee Stallion, and Lil Nas X pose for the cameras at the Met Gala.

After over a year of missing award shows, premieres, and celebrity events, the world is finally opening up again. With the entertainment world slowly returning back to normal, highly anticipated social events are coming back. The Met Gala, one of the most well known celebrity philanthropic events, had its comeback after a two year hiatus.

Celebrities came to the lavish night. A$AP Rocky and Rihanna make their first public appearance after confirming their relationship. The love birds mingled with the stars at the Metropolitan Museum of Arts in New York City.

The Met Gala, held at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art (Met), is an event that raises funds for the Met’s Costume Institute. Traditionally, the Met Gala is held on the first Monday in May, but this year due to COVID concerns, it was postponed until Sept. 13. Each year, the big event has a theme, which is based on the museum’s costume exhibits. 

This year the Museum is holding their first ever two-part exhibition. The first display, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion”, which was the theme for this year’s gala, opened Sept. 18. The second part of this display, called “In America: An Anthology of Fashion”, is scheduled to open on May 5, 2022.

Each theme is chosen to reflect a current fashion trend, the trend’s history or a cultural shift. With each theme, the Met strives to cause debate in the fashion world and challenge designers to push past the limits. Past themes like 2018’s “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination” and 2015’s “China; Through the Looking Glass” have caused controversy and are still a topic of debate.

Andrew Bolton, chief curator of the Costume Institute, once stated that “I think every exhibition should generate debate.” And with this year’s theme, which was chosen to pay homage to the history behind American Fashion, the Met Gala will definitely be the topic of debate. This past year America has faced many issues. From the pandemic to the presidential election, there have been many political debates between Americans.  With all the current events it gave designers a chance to not just honor the influencers of America’s past, but also to honor those of our present. 

“We called the dress code this time — American independence. And we really want people to have fun and enjoy dressing up again,” said Vogue editor and organiser Anna Wintour in an interview with ABC’s Robin Roberts.

By staying relevant with current issues, it seems that the Met is aware of the new rising power of social media held by Generation Z. Gen Z has had one of the biggest influences this past year, and it seems that the Met Gala is trying to appeal to the new generation in order to stay relevant. For the first time, the gala’s co-chairs were all Gen Z: Billie Eilish, Timothée Chalamet, Naomi Ōsaka, and Amanda Gorman spearheaded the event.

Categories: Entertainment

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