Costuming ‘The Hours’ at the Met: Vintage Wallpaper and ’90s Calvin Klein
‘The Hours’ in its new Met-in-New York (Photo: David Levenson)
The Met has opened its new exhibition space, a converted school, in the Flatiron District, on 12th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues in Midtown — a long way from its past glory days of haute couture and fashion parades. “[The Met] in New York is a much newer concept. It’s very ambitious,” says Met Executive Director Michael Govan.
The new space is home to more than 50 works of art, including new collections from fashion houses like Yves Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen, as well as pieces dating all the way back to the ’50s. The Met has been selling works by international designers (like Stella McCartney and Balmain) in its galleries for decades, but now they have a new home where everyone can get a peek. The first work to be shown is by the legendary and controversial artist Robert Mapplethorpe.
Mapplethorpe, who was accused of sexual abuse when he was young by a woman who was then his girlfriend (she later became his wife), is not new to Met fashion weeks, having curated his first show at the museum in 2002 in collaboration with designer Hedi Slimane.
New York Magazine: I have to ask, because you have two great collections on the runway in this show; one of those is from your great grandmother, the other from your great grandfather. What is the difference between a great family and a great collection?
Robert: I come from the family of art. My whole collection represents artists. The work that you see in this show is art that I had for sale, but in fact I did not want to sell it. I was very careful in making my decisions. But I wanted my work to be in public, so I tried to keep this in the family.
New York Magazine: In a way, Mapplethorpe was never a great artist; he was a great curator. There’s nothing like that about him, because he was like a great curator who happens to be an artist.
Robert: He’s not a great architect or