The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced that the Costume Institute’s spring 2020 exhibition, About Time: Fashion and Duration, originally set to open the first week in May, has been rescheduled to run from late October to early February 2021. According to a statement from the museum, the timing of the Met gala, the star-studded red-carpet event that typically marks the opening of the annual exhibition, “is still under discussion.”
The museum has been closed to the public and staff since mid March. It is scheduled to reopen on July 1, pending, of course, further direction from the state and federal governments and the Centers for Disease of Control and Prevention about the status of the coronavirus pandemic, which has ground to a halt most of the world’s activity and shuttered almost every single major global cultural institution.
About Time is part of a museum-wide celebration marking the 150th anniversary of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. As Andrew Bolton, the Wendy Yu Curator in Charge at the Costume Institute, explained at a Paris press conference in February officially unveiling of the show’s theme, the anniversary led to a consideration of the nature of longevity in fashion.
“We wanted to rethink our collection through a concept that reflected the fashion zeitgeist, one that we felt was very timely and topical,” Bolton said. “In recent years, time has dominated discussions within the fashion community. These talks are centered around the accelerated production, circulation, and consumption of fashion in the digitally synchronized world, the 21st century. Unquestionably companies have benefited from this sped-up, around-the-clock temporality of digital capitalism, but designers have often been creatively constrained by its 24/7, continuous functioning. So we thought it might be an opportune moment to explore the temporal character of fashion from a historical perspective.”
From Vogue US