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The Met’s Costume Institute unveils spring 2020 exhibition

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The Metropolitan Museum of Art has announced The Costume Institute’s spring 2020 exhibition. It will be called ‘About Time: Fashion and Duration’, and will be part of the museum’s 150th anniversary celebrations.

The exhibition will be on view from May 7 to September 7, 2020, and will present a disruptive timeline of fashion history.

“This exhibition will consider the ephemeral nature of fashion, employing flashbacks and fast-forwards to reveal how it can be both linear and cyclical,” said Max Hollein, director of The Met.

Presenting a disruptive timeline of fashion history

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Image courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photo © David Bailey

“As such, the show will present a nuanced continuum of fashion over the museum’s 150-year history,” Hollein added.

It will, of course, kick off on May 4 with The Costume Institute Benefit (aka The Met Gala), with co-chairs Nicolas Ghesquière, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Emma Stone, Meryl Streep, and Anna Wintour.

Presented in The Met Fifth Avenue’s Iris and B Gerald Cantor Exhibition Hall, it will trace more than 150 years of fashion, from 1870 to present.

About Time: Fashion and Duration will be guided by philosopher Henri Bergson‘s concept of la durée, or duration. Virginia Woolf will serve as the ‘ghost narrator’ of the exhibition.

Michael Cunningham, whose novel ‘The Hours’ was inspired by Woolf’s ‘Mrs Dalloway’, will write a new short story reflecting on duration for the exhibition catalogue.

The exhibition will feature approximately 160 examples of women’s fashion, the majority of which will come from The Costume Institute’s collection.

About Time is organised by The Costume Institute’s curator Andrew Bolton, with support from assistant curator Amanda Garfinkel and curatorial consultant Jan Reeder.

About Time will trace more than 150 years of fashion

“Fashion is indelibly connected to time,” said Bolton. “It not only reflects and represents the spirit of the times, but it also changes and develops with the times, serving as an especially sensitive and accurate timepiece.

“Through a series of chronologies, the exhibition will use the concept of duration to analyse the temporal twists and turns of fashion history.”

Images: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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Bea Mitchell

Bea is a journalist specialising in entertainment, attractions and tech with 10 years' experience. She has written and edited for publications including CNET, BuzzFeed, Digital Spy, Evening Standard and BBC. Bea graduated from King's College London and has an MA in journalism.

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