Met Gala 2022 guide: everything you need to know
Follow our live coverage of the Met Gala 2022 Red carpet.
First things first: what is the Met Gala?
Officially, this is the benefit of the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute, a black-tie extravaganza held on the first Monday in May to raise funds for the Costume Institute.
Unofficially, it’s “the party of the year,” “the East Coast Oscars,” and “an ATM for the Met” (the latest from publicist Paul Wilmot). We think of it as the Fashion X Games or the All-Star Game of Entrances.
When does it start?
Guests receive timed entry instructions to avoid traffic jams on the red carpet. In theory, arrivals start at 5:30 p.m., usually with the famous hosts of the evening, and end at 8 p.m. But the most famous usually arrive when they want, sometimes until 9:30 p.m. We can’t rush Rihanna.
Wait… is Rihanna coming?
Probably not this time since she is due to give birth any moment now, but who knows? It could add drama on the red carpet.
So who are the hosts?
The special co-hosts are Regina King, Lin-Manuel Miranda and power couple Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds. Honorary chairs include Anna Wintour of Vogue, the real power behind the event; Adam Mosseri, the boss of Instagram, the company that finances the exhibition and the party, with Condé Nast; and Tom Ford, who will likely dress many attendees.
Is there a theme?
The party marks the opening of the Costume Institute’s hit annual show, and the dress code for the party is usually inspired by the exhibit. This year’s show is “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” part two of a year-long show about the relevance and power of American fashion. (The first part was “In America: A Fashion Lexicon.”) The dress code is “golden glamour.”
Hasn’t the American fashion gala already taken place?
It is true that due to the pandemic, and for only once, a Met Gala took place in September, although on a slightly reduced scale, for the first part of the exhibition. (To be completely accurate, the galas were originally held in November; they moved around a bit and settled in May 2005.) Because the gala was canceled in 2020, the Costume Institute, like l he American fashion industry has taken a financial hit, and the interim gala was set to make up some of the shortfall – and give the city the equivalent of a high-profile coming out party.
Speaking of a pandemic, are there any Covid precautions this year?
Participants must provide proof of their vaccination status and a negative COVID-19 PCR test. They are also asked to wear a face covering inside, except when eating or drinking.
Back to the dress code: What is golden glamour? Is it income inequality?
Given that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez attended the September gala wearing a dress tagged with the words “Tax the Rich,” tickets are $35,000 each, and tables range from $200,000 to $300,000. , this is a fair assumption. But no, it’s a celebration of fashion and those who wear it.
Why would anyone pay so much for a party?
Ms. Wintour, editor-in-chief of American Vogue and artistic director of Condé Nast, became president in 1995 and took over as permanent party leader in 1999. Since then, she has been instrumental in transforming a local philanthropic event in the ultimate power of celebrities. Cocktail: Take a jigger of famous fashion names, add film, tech, politics, sports and influencers, and mix it up.
Since the Costume Institute is the only self-funding curatorial department at the Met, fashion having been uncertain as an art form when the department was established, the gala is its main source of income. In 2021, the ball raised over $16.4 million. (For some contexts, the same year, the New York City Ballet’s fall gala raised just over $2 million.)
Also, not everyone pays. Celebrities, young designers and politicians are usually the guests of the big brands or the museum.
So what should we expect in terms of fashion?
If you’ve watched “The Gilded Age” you’ll get the idea. Think of fashion between 1870 and 1890. Think of books by Astors, Vanderbilt, Whitney and Edith Wharton. Think gold, corsets, bustles and big sleeves. Think white tie, not black. Overthink!
It looks like a costume party. Is it?
Only insofar as fashion is the costume we all wear every day. That said, though, this is the most extreme version of that costume, more extreme than the Oscars, the Cannes Film Festival, and even the MTV Video Music Awards. Because the creators who attend almost always bring their own celebrities, the guests become walking advertisements for the brands as well as publicity for the event. This has created a virtuous circle of one-upmanship, as labels compete for the best stars and stars compete for the most eye-catching outfits.
In 2018, for example, for “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination,” Rihanna became pope. Katy Perry wore angel wings so huge she practically knocked over another guest. And Sarah Jessica Parker had a whole crib on her head.
In 2019, “Camp: Notes on Fashion” took the event to the next level: Lady Gaga, a host, stripped down four different outfits for her single entry; a winged Billy Porter was carried aloft on a litter carried by six shirtless men; and Cardi B appeared dressed as a womb.
Last September, when Kim Kardashian arrived in head-to-toe black Balenciaga, identifiable only by her famous figure, it seemed that some sort of turning point had been reached.
How can I watch?
E! offers coverage, as does Vogue.com. Or, for a sharp commentary, listen to our red carpet slideshow, produced in real time as the hosts step in.
Who can go? Elon Musk?
Mr. Musk has indeed been a regular attendee in recent years (in 2018 he helped design Grimes’ gala look), but we’ll see if he shows up this time. It certainly fulfills all the entry criteria. After all, unlike other cultural fundraisers, like the Metropolitan Opera Gala or the Frick Collection Young Fellows Ball, the Met Gala is invitation-only, not just about prize money.
Qualifications for inclusion have to do with buzz and success (and beauty) – aka, the gospel according to Anna – more than money. Ms. Wintour has the final say on every invitation and attendee, which means that even if a company buys a table, she can’t choose everyone who sits at her table. He has to guest clear with her and Vogue and pray for approval.
This year, as in 2021, there are approximately 400 Chosen, on a guest list guarded with the obsessive secrecy of the Illuminati member roll. But keep an eye out for Dakota Johnson, Eileen Gu, Megan Thee Stallion and newlyweds Brooklyn and Nicola Peltz Beckham. And presumably, directors Sofia Coppola, Chloé Zhao and Martin Scorsese will be there, since they are part of the show.
Excuse me, how does Sofia Coppola fit into the show?
She is one of 10 directors (including Mr. Ford and Ms. King) who have been invited to create stagings in the period rooms of the museum’s American Wing which place 100 historical garments from the mid-19th century at the end of the 20th. century in a narrative context — domestic, cultural and political.
Does this mean that they made short films?
No, just design the mannequins and stage to “reveal the role of dress in shaping the diversity of American identities,” according to the museum.
What happens when guests enter?
It’s a secret. Social media posting has been banned since some models were caught taking selfies while smoking in the toilet.
What we can tell you is this: there’s a reception line inside with hosts, usually next to a towering flower arrangement by event planner Raul Avila that pretty much picks up on what is normally the central information stand in the Great Hall. Guests file past a reception line and then tour the exhibit on their way to the cocktail party, so they are theoretically bound to experience a certain culture.
After the aperitif, they are called to dinner.
Having dinner? Are they really eating?
In theory. Marcus Samuelsson “curated” the menu, which was created by three chefs – Amirah Kassem, founder of Flour Shop; Melissa King, the winner of “Top Chef: All-Stars Los Angeles”, season 17; and Lauren Von Der Pool, the raw vegan chef who helped Michelle Obama in her anti-obesity campaign – to represent a “new take on American regional cuisine”. So adjacent theme!
What happens next?
There is always some form of entertainment (beyond table gossip). In 2019, Cher was doing Abba as well as her own hits. In 2021, it was Justin Bieber, followed by DJ D-Nice. Chances are this time Alexander Hamilton – oops, Mr. Miranda – could play a part.