Thursday, June 27, 2013

Punk, Punk, Punk!

Most of the time museums are not my ideal idea of a fun time, but that was not the attitude I had when heading to the Metropolitan Museum.

The recent "Punk Chaos to Couture" exhibit was the attraction us fashionistas at the FIT Pre-College program yearned for. I really had no idea what to expect. Hope for the best but only expect the worst, I guess. It was going to be my first time at the museum and not only that but personally I am not really into "punk", so I wasn't really sure what it was all going to entail.

As taking my first few steps into the exhibit, I was in awe. It was breath taking in a way hard to explain. It wasn't that the there was beautiful artwork on the walls, that's not exactly what I would call it. It was the loud cutting edge music, the abrupt sudden movements in the video and the dark setting throughout the whole thing, that gave me a feeling like no other. All of this together put me in the mindset of what it could have been like living in that revolt. I pictured myself walking down and alley in the city lined with graffiti and people that lived to be different. It was almost overwhelming but it fit the exhibit to a tee.

The exhibit started off with a few blurbs to read and just a few models, setting us up for what was to come. What really caught my attention though was the little display of what showed a bathroom that had been completely vandalized and soiled. This was exactly what the punks were. They were outcasts in society that wanted to pretty much do the opposite of expected. If the public bathroom was to stay clean, they would dirty it. If it was absurd to wear racist or suggestive graphics.. you're right, they would do it. The exhibit showed examples of clothing that they wore during this time. Some of it was actually hard to look at. Many images and quotes that would be completely repulsive this day in age. But all of this lead up to what was coming, it was all just around the next corner.

Dozens of couture dresses lined the hallways, all having that punk edge. Over the last about 20 years, designers like Alexander McQueen, Calvin Klein and Dolce & Gobbana have used their own interpretations of the punk time period in their creations. These are designers that would not necessarily cross your mind when thinking of punk, but they have all used it in their own way. You could really tell in each of the pieces if they were done by the same person, there were usually a few outfits that had the same main idea. Many the same color scheme or made by the same materials. Showing that they all had come from the same collection.

The theme mostly throughout all of them was the recycled aspect of each. Some being dresses made of garbage bags, or ripped apart shirts put back together with a hundred safety pins. A big part of it all was the do-it-yourself option for most of the outfits. It made everything very unique and made it as though it was not so out of the ordinary.

All though this style is not for me, at all, I highly respect it for shaping the industry today. I was incredibly fortunate to be able to actually see the exhibit, it really gave me a point of view to fashion I didn't have. I would say that for me, seeing it once was enough though. I would recommend it to anyone that could stop by, it really was a sight to see.