The Met Gala is one of the most anticipated events in the fashion world, where celebrities, designers and influencers gather to celebrate the latest exhibition of the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Every year, the Met Gala has a theme that inspires the outfits of the attendees and reflects the focus of the exhibition. This year, the theme is “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty”, a tribute to the late designer who shaped the face of fashion for more than half a century.
Karl Lagerfeld was a prolific and influential figure in the fashion industry, who worked for several prestigious houses such as Chanel, Fendi, Chloé and Balmain, as well as his own label. He was known for his creative vision, his impeccable craftsmanship and his ability to reinvent himself and adapt to different styles and trends. He was also a photographer, a book publisher and a collector of art and antiques. He left behind a legacy of iconic collections, memorable shows and unforgettable images.
However, Lagerfeld was also a controversial personality, who often sparked criticism and backlash for his outspoken opinions and controversial actions. He was accused of being insensitive, elitist, misogynistic, racist and xenophobic by various groups and individuals. Some of his most notorious controversies include:
- Karl Lagerfeld’s Comments On The #MeToo Movement
In an interview with Numéro magazine in 2018, Lagerfeld said that he was “fed up” with the #MeToo movement and that he didn’t believe the accusers of Harvey Weinstein. He also said that models who complain about being groped should join a nunnery instead of working in fashion.
- He Sent Flowers To Dominique Strauss-Kahn, An Accused Rapist
In 2011, Lagerfeld sent flowers to Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former head of the International Monetary Fund who was accused of sexually assaulting a hotel maid in New York. Lagerfeld said he felt sorry for Strauss-Kahn and that he didn’t believe he was guilty.
- He Was Against Casting Realistic And Plus-Sized Models
Lagerfeld was notorious for his preference for thin models and his disdain for plus-sized women. He once said that “no one wants to see curvy women” on the runway and that “fat mummies” should stay at home instead of protesting against skinny models.
- Fat shamed women including Adele & Heidi Klum
Karl Lagerfeld said that Adele was “a little too fat” and that Heidi Klum was “too heavy” to be a model.
- He Criticized Angela Merkel For Opening The German Borders For Refugees
In 2017, Lagerfeld sparked outrage when he said that Angela Merkel had made a “huge mistake” by allowing millions of refugees into Germany. He said that Germany had killed millions of Jews during World War II and now wanted to be forgiven by hosting Muslims who hated Jews.
- Karl Lagerfeld Slammed Kim Kardashian After Paris Robbery Incident
In 2016, Kim Kardashian was robbed at gunpoint in her hotel room in Paris, where she lost millions of dollars worth of jewelry. Lagerfeld said that he felt sorry for her but also blamed her for flaunting her wealth on social media. He said that she should not have been surprised by what happened and that she should have been more discreet.
These controversies have tarnished Lagerfeld’s reputation and raised questions about his legacy. Some people have praised him as a genius and a legend, while others have condemned him as a bigot and a bully. The theme of the 2023 Met Gala is therefore a risky and provocative choice, as it may spark further debates and controversies about Lagerfeld’s life and work. It may also challenge the attendees to find ways to honor his contributions to fashion without endorsing his problematic views and actions.
The Met Gala 2023 will take place on Monday, May 1st in New York City. It will be co-hosted by Penélope Cruz, Michaela Coel, Roger Federer, Dua Lipa and Anna Wintour. The exhibition “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty” will open to the public on May 2nd and will feature more than 150 pieces from Lagerfeld’s career, as well as his sketches and photographs. It will be curated by Andrew Bolton, the Costume Institute’s Wendy Yu Curator in Charge, with the collaboration of Amanda Harlech, who worked closely with Lagerfeld for many years.