Museum field trip - cranky edition

My husband complains that I'm too critical and too cranky and that I ought to be more open minded.  One thing that I have been critical and cranky about over the past few years is the costume exhibits at the Metropolitan Museum.

The curators and the folks that design the exhibits  don't trust the garments themselves to be able to carry an exhibit. They end up tarting up the exhibits to such an extent that it's difficult to actually look at the clothes and figure out what they might be saying, My other big complaint about the Met is that they don't know how to display the clothing well. They make it hard to actually see the clothing.

Today one of my out of town sewing buddies was in for a visit ad we decided to go to the Met to see both Impressionism, Fashion and Modernity as well as Punk. You can click through the pages

I love my friends. it is a delight to spend any time with them.

The impressionism show was a really good show of French Impressionist art presented in a thoughtful way.  The garments that were part of the exhibit were terrific. I don't know how much more difficult it could have been to look at the garments, unless they were shut in a dark closet. The vitrines were light to maximize glare.  The dresses were lit badly. I get that the light needs to be low to protect the fibers of the dresses  but white pique dresses were lit to look sickly green.

I had read a review that commented that the clothing in the paintings looked vibrant, but the actual garments looked dull.  the fault was not in the garments but in the displays.


After lunch we went back to look at the punk exhibit.  I wasn't alive in the age of Impressionism, so I can't tell you if  either the art or the clothing were typical of the times. I was however not only alive but also the right age  during the great heyday of punk.

The exhibit itself is aggressively unpleasant.  It's all flashing lights and loud music  and it's really hard to look at the clothes. The garments themselves are not actual punk clothes but rather couture imaginings of punk. So the famous Versace safety pin dress worn by Elizabeth Hurley was on display. It's a beautiful refined dress made out of elegantly constructed silk.  Is it punk? probably not.

There were clothes from last season on display. Sorry, it's two decades too new to be punk.

There was an outfit by Balmain that I found completely repellent. It was a t-shirt and jeans all ripped up. It felt very Marie Antoinette playing shepherdess to me. 

After two galleries my friends and I felt like we had to flee the exhibit. so we did.





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