NEW YORK — Brace for a British invasion at the Metropolitan Museum of Art this spring.
The museum's Costume Institute and the Department of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts are collaborating on "AngloMania," the spring exhibition that will aim to create a dialogue between British fashion since 1976 and the six English Period Rooms at the Annie Laurie Aitken Galleries. Suitably, iconic British brand Burberry is sponsoring the exhibition and its accompanying book. Condé Nast Publications Inc. is providing additional support.
"AngloMania" will kick off with the annual benefit gala on May 1, which will be cochaired by a trio of Brits: Christopher Bailey, Burberry's creative director; Sienna Miller, and Anna Wintour, Vogue's editor in chief. Rose Marie Bravo, Burberry's chief executive, will be the gala's honorary chair. (Vogue, like WWD, is owned by Condé Nast Publications).
"This exhibition will reflect all the different aspects of Britishness, from the pomp and grandeur to the whimsical eccentricities of our culture," said Bailey. "This exhibition will also portray the immense British creativity and it is a wonderful opportunity to marry history and modernity."
The Costume Institute's curator in charge, Harold Koda, and associate curator Andrew Bolton will organize the exhibit with the help of Ian Wardropper, the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Curator in charge of the Department of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts, and artist and opera designer Patrick Kinmonth, who will be its creative consultant.
The exhibit will take place in the six period rooms, including Kirtlington Park, the Elizabethean Room, Croome Court and the Lansdowne Room. The rooms will feature vignettes of contemporary British designers, who are still being determined but could range from John Galliano and Alexander McQueen to Vivienne Westwood, Hussein Chalayan, Stella McCartney and Boudicca.
"I'd like for people to see how designers are engaging with the past, and how that comes through in their clothing," Bolton said. "I also want people to engage with the rooms themselves. The clothing we'll choose will have a definite relationship to the actual period rooms."
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