With most museum galas targeted toward their youthful contingents, the self-proclaimed “young” qualifier tends to be rather forgiving. Yet the Metropolitan Museum of Art‘s annual Young Members Party aimed to host “young art enthusiasts” between the ages of 21 and 35, and, save for the occasional elder gent who’d talked himself in, managed to do just that.
The Millennial-heavy crowd dressed in their summer cocktail finest for the evening, an opportunity to show off Fourth of July weekend tans. If you were wondering when the time is to debut your summer gingham suit, or your mother’s vintage costume bustier, the Met Young Members party was it. Ripped boot-cut jeans, board shorts and chambray button downs were also fair game, as was the occasional ballgown. Clearly “summer cocktail” is open to interpretation.
Uptown Manhattan is hard-pressed to find a cocktail gala in the midst of July, a month usually reserved for Hamptons lawn parties when it comes to the social circuit. But the promise of the ever-Instagrammable Met rooftop — paired with passionfruit margaritas, naturally — drew more than 1,000 guests to the museum for a look at the costume institute’s “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology,” which was just extended through Labor Day, as well as “The Roof Garden Commission: Cornelia Parker, Transitional Object (PsychoBarn).”
The trek to the rooftop proved fruitful for photo-ops but challenging for the evening’s blowouts, given the night’s high humidity. Gathered in front of the PsychoBarn a grouping of young women worked tirelessly to tame their hair pre-selfie, as their male counterparts craned their iPhones above the pack to snap the perfect sunset picture. Having gotten their fill of the roof, the crowd lined up to be shuttled back down to the lobby of the museum, where dancing and drinks continued, only to encounter a stalled elevator. An evaporated gentleman, experiencing a WiFi delay in uploading his latest post, remarked “this would’ve never happened at the MoMA.”