The theme of the ceremony coincides with a major exhibition at the Metropolitan Institute of Fashion entitled “Karl Lagerfeld: The Beauty Line”. In a press release, The Met said the exhibition will bring together about 150 designs that “explore the designer’s stylistic language.”
Items on display will include creations from Lagerfeld’s time as creative director of Fendi, Chloe and Chanel, as well as pieces from his stints at Balmain and Patou and designs from his eponymous label.
The annual fundraiser is among the most talked about red carpet events this year. attributed to him: James Devani / JC Images / Getty Images
Lagerfeld was a prolific painter, and most items on display will be accompanied by corresponding drawings. The institute’s director, Andrew Bolton, said he was inspired to hear Lagerfeld’s design assistants – or “the hands hidden behind Karl’s brilliance,” as he put it – salute at a memorial service.
“I was fascinated by how they communicated (with Lagerfeld), which was done with the drawings,” Bolton told CNN shortly after the announcement.
“Every design in his life was a sketch…and when I saw the sketches, I thought, ‘This is so charming, so eccentric, so impressionistic.'” “But what I didn’t realize was that it had really accurate information – about the shoulder line or the length of the sleeve. And (his crew) they knew exactly what that line or the point meant, and they could decode it.”
Bolton, who also writes a companion book, said the late designer “would have hated the retrospective exhibition” but that the exhibition would be more like an “essay” on his work.
Although the Met Gala dates back to 1948, the idea of focusing on an accompanying exhibition only emerged in the 1970s. Recent topics have included “China: Through the Looking Glass” in 2015 and “Camp: Notes on Fashion” four years later. Individual designers have been in the spotlight in the past, with last year’s themes including Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior, Gianni Versace and most recently Comme des Garçons founder Rei Kawakubo.
Kim Kardashian, pictured with Pete Davidson, caused a stir at last year’s Met Gala by choosing a dress worn by Marilyn Monroe. attributed to him: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images
Next year’s Lagerfeld Gallery will be open to the public from early May through mid-July. The ceremony’s co-chairs, which included last year’s Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, have yet to be announced.
Top photo: A photo of Karl Lagerfeld with Blake Lively at the 2011 gala, titled “Alexander McQueen: Beauty Savage.”
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