Contrary to what some first impressions may have been when this year’s Met Gala theme was announced, the Costume Institute’s annual showcase had nothing to do with cabins or campfires. This version of ‘Camp’ can be defined in the words of author Christopher Isherwood, ‘You’re not making fun of it; you’re making fun out of it’, or according to The New York Post, “ironic yet sincere; glamorous yet tacky; so bad it’s good; too much and just right.”
As we watched the whos who walk the ‘pink’ carpet, we couldn’t help but be in awe at the over-the-top viral ambitions that were ironically tangible and utterly sincere — all at the same time. Co-chair, Lady Gaga, embodied the theme wholeheartedly; paying homepage to the OG 2009 Lady Gaga who just so happened to be the epitome of ‘Camp’.
Though every look did not attempt to compete at the same level as Gaga, Cardi B, Katy Perry and Jared Leto, ensembles still set the tone for an evening ruled by vulnerability and self-expression. While we can all agree that the majority of these outfits don’t define what is ‘fashionable’ we can all respect that they are in fact FUN. As Susan Sontag wrote: “The whole point of Camp is to dethrone the serious…One can be serious about the frivolous, frivolous about the serious.”
While social media on-lookers weren’t too thrilled about looks from Frank Ocean, Trevor Noah and Tracey Ellis Ross, these were in fact some of the most on theme outfits of the night. Many forgot that ‘Camp’ is in fact no less than a chimera; varying in degree of ludicrous aestheticism and irony. Frank Ocean dressing as some form of a guard, or “valet” as he deemed it in his Instagram story, has an irony that stands for Camp as much as Katy Perry donning a Moschino chandelier.
We invite you to an open-ended invitation to scroll through our favorite looks of the night: