You would be hard-pressed to find a gala more known and respected than the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s annual bash. With an invite list that reads like a who’s who of the entertainment and fashion worlds and a spectacular theme for an exhibit worth the trip to New York, the fête always manages to one-up itself year after year. Next year is proving to be no exception to the rule, with the theme just announced as “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology”.
Previous Gala themes have included Anglomania, Superheroes, Punk Couture, and Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty. Guests are encouraged to dress in accordance with the theme, with the results always being memorable. A theme like fashion and technology blows the door open for countless potential tech looks. Hussein Chalayan is the frontrunner for a look everyone will talk about – from his 2000 table-skirt, to his moving dress and LED dress from his 2007 collections, the designer has always been tech friendly. But there are also new designers incorporating tech into their clothing – Iris van Herpen regularly uses 3D printing to create futuristic, intricate designs. Richard Nicoll earned his place in history with his fiber-optic “jellyfish dress” from 2014. And Gareth Pugh’s bold, space-age looks, which wouldn’t look out of place in the world of TRON, have always commanded attention.
And apart from direct tech wearables in fashion, tech-inspired looks are also potential candidates for guests to wear. Nicolas Ghesquiere’s work at Louis Vuitton for Spring 2016 as well as past work for Balenciaga has had a strong Blade Runner vibe; Alexander McQueen creations both by the man himself (who could ever forget the robot-sprayed dress from 1999?) and by his successor Sarah Burton have had future auras about them; Alexander Wang has his 2013 spectacle of glow-in-the-dark pieces, and even Diane von Furstenberg has got in on the fun, sending her models down the runway wearing Google Glass.
The Met Gala has always been the place to debut a mind-blowing look. With this theme in mind, we can only imagine what industry heavyweights will bring to the red carpet next year. Better start reserving those pieces now – we’re sure they’ll be high in demand come May.