Met Gala focuses on extravagant styles rather than its true goal

Maddie Cohen and Eli Lefcowitz and Maddie Cohen and Eli Lefcowitz

Noted as one of the most exclusive events in the world, the Met Gala in New York City always brings in a new year of important fashion. However, amidst the hype about crazy dresses and crazy celebrities in general, it is often forgotten that the goal of the event is to raise millions of dollars for the Museum of Art.

The Met Gala has been held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art since 1946 and is known to be the fashion industry’s premier annual red carpet event. Vogue editor-in-chief, Anna Wintour oversees both the benefit committee and the guest list. The Met Gala raises over $9 million and is seen as the  She has had the position since 1995 and has been raising money for the Costume Center so long that it is named after her.

The Met Gala is a famous symbol of New York City. It represents the pageantry and wealth of the many celebrities residing in the city, while also displaying the prominent arts and fashion of the city. In addition, it shows the philanthropy associated with today’s biggest stars. Despite the changing styles, the Met Gala has always represented the best aspects of New York City.

Originally the focus of the event was purely raising money for the expansive museum. Photos from the first years show unnoteworthy outfits and a lack of extravagence. However, the gala  quickly evolved. As the event became more publicized, celebrities felt inclined to show their fashionable side. The gala became less centered on the Met and more focused around the people who were attending  it.

Each year, Hollywood’s biggest stars represent all of the glamour and beauty of the fashion world. The event is internationally known and indicative of current events and styles.

Despite the high amount of media at the red carpet, the public is not able to see what actually goes on inside the event, yards away. This kind of privacy is certainly not common for a charity event of that magnitude.

With a new theme every year, the tone is set for the exhibit, which the guests of the gala are able to tour before being seated for dinner. The event, which celebrates the opening of the Costume Institutes spring exhibition, had a new theme this year, “China: Through the Looking Glass” which celebrated China’s influence on Western fashion.

The Met Gala has historically included big name stars in addition to people you may have not heard of. The theme does not only apply to fashion; it is also used to select special guests. Some of the more notable themes were punk, the Napoleanic era, and cubism.

The amount of money raised has always been impressive. Each year, the Gala raises up to ten even fifteen million dollars with ticket prices ranging from $15,000 to $25,000. Overall, the Met Gala’s main source of annual funding is exhibitions, acquisitions and capital improvements.       However, once again, the public is not able to experience what goes on inside the event. Reviewing the red carpet is great, but what about reviewing the fundraiser? The glitz and glamour are very tempting, but do not forget the reason that all of these celebrities were conglomerated and the original basis for the event.

The event is succesful because it brings more press to the museum than any other event, yet it does reveal our growing fixation as a society on individuals rather than the beautiful art that surrounds them.