Saturday, May 30, 2015

Not my monkeys. Not my circus....

Please come to my party?
It was impossible to dodge all the news stories leading up to the party of the century, or at least the party of the month. Everywhere you looked there were stories about Anna Wintour and her visionary status. The queen of the zeitgeist. Or better yet, the createur of the zeitgeist. Considering, the shift from models as cover subjects to stars of the movies, reality TV and the music industry, and an occasional athlete (Serena Williams to fill the color quotient), has made her job really pretty easy. First off the gates are officially closed to all and sundry who do not meet the requirements of her stringent list. The ticket price which is nothing but a stab at democracy when in reality no invitations are "paid for" as Ms. Wintour instructs her sponsors (LVMH, etc) to pony up while she takes care of who comes with whom wearing what and where those someones will be seated. No longer is a designer on the rise welcome or even invited but only those who've ascended to her particular zip code in heaven....

It looks like a hell of a party. The decoration, food, entertainment (Rihanna singing, "Bitch better have my money") look grand compared to most "benefits" in town. The museum certainly is a huge draw with the costume institute exhibitions only getting better. The Alexander McQueen "Savage Beauty" exhibit set a new bar for the subsequent shows. This show, unlike Charles James which to my eye was a rambling mess of a show was well thought out and beautifully arranged. At the James show I trekked upstairs, downstairs, around the corner, all over the place and in the course of trying to find another part of the show, I found the front door and called it a day. This show is pretty fabulous in that it is beautifully integrated into several of the museum's galleries culminating down below in the original galleries for this show. The dark, dank basement.

My beef with this rite of spring is the sheer level of crass self regard, not to mention a noticeable lack of restraint on the part of all the women who came in nothing more than a spangle (partially) covered slip that couldn't be bothered with covering her nether regions. Between the utter scale/degree that "entertainers"went to to get a little love from the press was nothing short of taking to the steps and dropping all pretense, starting with a silly article of clothing. What does that say about China and a looking glass? Beyonce', Jlo, Rihanna, Kim K and others seem not to have gotten the memo that perhaps it's a good idea to show positive examples of womanhood and beauty for the little girls out there looking and yearning to be just like them. Images of Kim K and her rear end were like looking at a sideshow star on the night the circus is closed. Even Anna Wintour was dressed in a not so flattering look. That dress coupled with a smiling, de-spectacled Wintour was like looking in the tent where they keep the babies floating in formaldehyde. Unsettling. Even nightmare producing.

The Costume Institute Ball was once a party to end all parties, if you cared for fashion and the world that made it up here. It was elegant. Exciting. You got to meet the players and dance til dawn with a whole mad mix of New Yorkers. Amazing things could happen. It was Vegas jackpot experience for me one year. A stylist from Vanity Fair complimented my date and muse Bernadette on her gown and next thing I knew there were 6 looks at a cover meeting for the Hollywood issue of the magazine. I ended up with 2 gowns on that cover. The only guy with 2 and on the backs of Jada Pinkett and JLo that year. Who knew? For 150. and a tux the world could be your oyster. If it were today? Well, if it were today there'd be no story to write. Still, go see the show. It's great. 


spirou said...

Just keep on singing the lyrics of " Send it the clowns " !!
Don't you love farce ? My fault I hear
I thought that you'd want what I want
Sorry my dear but where are the clowns ?
There ought to be clowns, quick send in the clowns
What a surprise, what a cliche' ?

It's over, read Proust, travel, wear stripe tshirts and Tod shoes.

Fluff Chance said...

ain't it the truth? I hate farce unless its deliberate. And though this farce appears deliberate, I still don't like it. FLUFF

Unknown said...

As always, your simple eloquence is stunning. And, I agree with your observations and feelings expressed with an admirable restraint. Keep writing, Sir.

Anonymous said...

These annual CI spring shows have become [along with the gala] an enormous PR/marketing event for VOGUE. Wintour not only has the last word on guest lists and the gala, she hand picks the gallery staff for the opening [from her own VOGUE staff, not the museum staff]. She also has a heavy hand in choosing the theme for the exhibit, something the museum will deny until the cows come home.