In America: A Lexicon of Fashion was the theme of this year’s Met Gala, in support of the Costume Institute, the first of a two-part series that will conclude next May, when the Met Gala typically takes place. Per the exhibit description, “establishes a modern vocabulary of American fashion based on its expressive qualities”. And the exhibit explores 12 defining emotional qualities that are knitted together as part of the American identity: “Nostalgia, Belonging, Delight, Joy, Wonder, Affinity, Confidence, Strength, Desire, Assurance, Comfort, and Consciousness.”
This is broad, one of the broader themes we’ve seen in years, and in that sense, you could connect any outfit we saw last night to at least one of those emotions. And broad also because, well, in theory, the idea of being American is to be free to be who you want to be. America is ostensibly the land of opportunity, where anyone with a dream can pursue it. That is also America’s dream for itself, the great experiment it’s been trying to pull off for almost 250 years.
Given the spirit of what America is supposed to stand for then, and that word “freedom” that is so often associated with American identity, who was more on theme at the Met Gala 2021 than Elliot Page?
This was Elliot’s first red carpet since coming out as trans. He has spoken candidly about being on red carpets in the past, feeling so uncomfortable, to the point of oppression, because they were not living as themselves. That was nine months ago… and now? On fashion’s biggest night, at the Met Gala comeback, Elliot stepped onto that carpet truly free, in a black Balenciaga suit with a green rose which represents new beginnings, but which some online are connecting to Oscar Wilde’s green carnation, a queer symbol. With or without the rose, though, Elliot is all 12 of the defining emotional qualities that the Costume Institute is highlighting through its study of American fashion. This is a triumph.
More Met Gala coverage to come throughout the day – and there are a LOT of looks to get to. Refresh often!
Yours in gossip,