Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology

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Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology is the 2016 Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Exhibition on display from May 5th – September 5th 2016.

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The Spring 2016 exhibition explores the intersection between the handmade and the machine made in the worlds of haute couture and ready-to-wear, delving into technique, attitudes and opinions towards the two, and the ways in which both time-honored methods as well as technological advances are enabling designers to stretch their creativity in new and innovative ways. The pieces featured ran the gamut from hyper avant-garde, 3-D printed ensembles, to classic Yves Saint Laurent gowns, to modern Alexander McQueen pieces, and everything in between – all integrated together seamlessly.

With over 170 ensembles dating from the early 20th century to the present, the exhibition addresses the founding of the haute couture in the 19th century, when the sewing machine was invented, and the emergence of a distinction between the hand (manus) and the machine (machina) at the onset of mass production.

A wedding ensemble created by Karl Lagerfeld out of scuba knit, this piece epitomizes manus x machina– the intersection of the hand-made and machine-made. The dress itself is entirely machine sewn, while the 20 foot train is the result of 450 hours of both hand and machine workmanship.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is well known for their annual Gala – The Met Gala, where they invite the world’s top celebrities to be a part of their yearly theme. Hera are my favorite looks from this year:

I was fortunate enough to have the last chance to see the what I found to be the most prominent exhibit at the Met in New York City by far. Modern art, particularly high fashion fascinates me. Entering this exhibit was an experience in itself, the music, presentation, thought and effort that was put into this exhibit did not go unnoticed. Pictures could not do this exhibit justice, I hope you were able to get a small taste of the intricacy, elegance, and masterminds behind these pieces of art through my lens.

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