“Camp: Notes on Fashion” Brings The Party


All photos by Betty Sze

Think of “camp” as an ironic exaggeration through the lens of queer culture and you’ll have a clue to what lies in store at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s latest exhibition “Camp: Notes on Fashion”. This year, curator Andrew Bolton dialed up the play factor starting with the theme and incorporating fanciful creations from creative director and co-chair Alessandro Michele for Gucci, Viktor & Rolf, Moschino, Mugler, Vivienne Westwood, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Versace. The exhibition starts with the etymology of the elusive word “camp” manifested through fashion, photography, and art with the analysis from Susan Sontag, Christopher Isherwood, and Oscar Wilde contributing to its definition. As you view, the defying nature of the 150 selected works is pitted against the cultural or political conservatism of the times. Whether you take it as a fashion spectacle or a serious matter, the answer to “what is camp” seems to be whatever you want it to be – so long as you’re having fun. With the Met Gala moments away, check out our exclusive preview of the exhibition before doors open Thursday, May 9th.


Giambattista Valli, Fall 2018 Couture.


Left and center: Ashish, Fall 2017. Right: Romance Was Born, Spring 2015.


Jeremy Scott for Moschino, Fall 2010.


Jeremy Scott for Moschino, Spring 2017.


Thierry Mugler, Fall 1995 Couture.


Left: Salvatore Ferragamo sandal, 1938 designed for Judy Garland. Right: Gucci, resort 2017.


Jean Paul Gaultier, Spring 1997.


Left: Versace, Spring 1992. Right: Chanel, Fall 1991.


Viktor & Rolf, Spring 2019 Couture


Michael Travis Liberace costume, 1982.


Christian Dior, Fall 1998 Couture


Molly Goddard, Fall 2019


Left: Alessandro Michele for Gucci, Resort 2018. Center: Dapper Dan for Gucci. Right: Kim Jones for Louis Vuitton, Fall 2018 Menswear.


Left to right: President and CEO of Gucci, Marco Bizzarri; curator Andrew Bolton; director of The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Max Hollein, editor-in-chief of Vogue, Anna Wintour; and creative director of Gucci, Alessandro Michele


Left and right: Thom Browne, Spring 2017. Center: Gucci, Fall 2016.


Left and right: Thom Browne, Spring 2018 Menswear.


Christopher Bailey for Burberry, Fall 2018


Left, Cristobal Balenciaga, Fall 1965 couture. Right, Jeremy Scott for Moschino, Spring 2018


Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, Fall Couture 1987

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