The Metropolitan Museum Spring 2016 Costume Institute Gala celebrating the spring 2016 exhibition will be manus x machina: fashion in an age of technology. On Monday, May 5 the paparazzi will assemble as the glitterati arrive for their dramatic red carpet moment, ascending the monumental steps of the museum. It is THE most exciting night in fashion in the city, pegged as the “East Coast Oscars,” and divinely orchestrated by Co-Chairs Idris Elba, Jonathan Ive, Taylor Swift, and Anna Wintour, and Honorary Chairs Nicolas Ghesquière, Karl Lagerfeld, and Miuccia Prada. This exhibit will explore how fashion designers are reconciling the handmade and the machine-made in the creation of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear. This event is The Costume Institute’s main source of annual funding for exhibitions, publications, acquisitions, and capital improvements.
Our finely tuned focus, is what to wear to this extraordinary event where fashion, celebrity and industry combines to creates excitement beyond compare. And while some will adorn themselves for the camera, our approach will be elegant and appropriately festive in these two magnificent Marchesa Notte Embroidered Gowns with floor-sweeping skirts, so brilliantly designed for Red Carpet glamour. We kept the accessories luxuriously embellished with a beaded clutch, metallic sandals and a pair of statement earrings to compliment the lustrous ensemble.
Marchesa Notte Embroidered & Tulle Gown $1295 / Gucci Drop Earrings $1450 / Oscar de la Renta Embellished Satin Clutch $1450 / Marchesa Notte Embroidered Organza and Pleated Tulle Gown $1095 / Saint Laurent Metallic Sandals $695
Watch the Trailer “First Monday in May”
The exhibition is made possible by Apple.
Additional support is provided by Condé Nast.
About the Exhibition “Fashion and technology are inextricably connected, more so now than ever before,” said Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of the Met. “It is therefore timely to examine the roles that the handmade and the machine-made have played in the creative process. Often presented as oppositional, this exhibition proposes a new view in which the hand and the machine are mutual and equal protagonists.”
“Traditionally, the distinction between the haute couture and prêt-à-porter was based on the handmade and the machine-made, but recently this distinction has become increasingly blurred as both disciplines have embraced the practices and techniques of the other,” said Andrew Bolton, Curator in The Costume Institute. “manus x machina will challenge the conventions of the hand/machine dichotomy, and propose a new paradigm germane to our age of digital technology.”
Jonathan Ive, Apple’s Chief Design Officer, said, “Both the automated and handcrafted process require similar amounts of thoughtfulness and expertise. There are instances where technology is optimized, but ultimately it’s the amount of care put into the craftsmanship, whether it’s machine-made or hand-made, that transforms ordinary materials into something extraordinary.”
Exhibition Overview manus x machina will feature more than 100 examples of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear, dating from an 1880s Worth gown to a 2015 Chanel suit. The exhibition will reflect on the founding of the haute couture in the 19th century, when the sewing machine was invented, and the emergence of a distinction between the hand (manus) and the machine (machina) at the onset of industrialization and mass production. It will explore the ongoing rhetoric of this dichotomy in which hand and machine are presented as discordant instruments in the creative process, and will question this oppositional relationship as well as the significance of the time-honored distinction between the haute couture and ready-to-wear.
Exhibition Credits manus x machina is organized by Andrew Bolton, Curator of The Costume Institute. Shohei Shigematsu, Director of OMA New York, will lead the exhibition design in collaboration with the Met’s Design Department. Raul Avila will produce the Benefit décor, which he has done since 2007.
Related Content A publication by Andrew Bolton will accompany the exhibition. It will be published by The Metropolitan Museum of Art and distributed by Yale University Press, and will be available in early May.
A special feature on the Museum’s website, www.metmuseum.org/manusxmachina, provides information about the exhibition. Follow us on Facebook.com/metmuseum,
Instagram.com/metmuseum, and Twitter.com/metmuseum to join the conversation about the exhibition and gala benefit. Use #manusxmachina, #CostumeInstitute, and #MetGala on Instagram and Twitter.