The Met Gala, also known as the Costume Institute Benefit, is an annual fundraising event held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. It is known for its elaborate fashion statements and celebrity attendees. Over the years, the Met Gala has seen its fair share of controversial moments, from risqué outfits to cultural insensitivity. Let's take a look at some of the most controversial moments in Met Gala history.
Madonna's "Like a Virgin" Dress (1984)
Madonna's iconic "Like a Virgin" dress was a daring choice for the inaugural Met Gala in 1984. The pop star wore a white dress with a tulle skirt and a "Boy Toy" belt, topped off with a veil and a crucifix. The outfit was seen as a statement of sexual liberation, but it also raised eyebrows for its religious imagery.
Princess Diana's Dior Slip Dress (1996)
In 1996, Princess Diana attended the Met Gala in a navy blue slip dress by Dior. The dress was seen as too casual for the black-tie event, and some criticized the Princess for not being appropriately dressed for the occasion.
Sarah Jessica Parker's "Punk" Outfit (2013)
The 2013 Met Gala theme was "Punk: Chaos to Couture," and Sarah Jessica Parker's outfit certainly lived up to the theme. The actress wore a mohawk headpiece and a Giles Deacon dress with a punk-inspired graffiti print. The outfit received mixed reviews, with some praising Parker for embracing the theme and others calling the outfit garish and over-the-top.
Rihanna's Yellow Guo Pei Gown (2015)
Rihanna's yellow Guo Pei gown at the 2015 Met Gala was one of the most talked-about outfits of the night. The dress was so large that it required multiple handlers to carry the train up the Met's grand staircase. The outfit drew comparisons to a fried egg and a pizza, but it also cemented Rihanna's status as a fashion icon.
In an interview with Access Hollywood, Rihanna even said she felt the outfit was too much. “I remember being so scared to get out of that car because I felt like, ‘I’m doing too much.’ I was driving past the red carpet, and I was just seeing, like, gowns, and I was like, ‘Oh my god, I’m a clown. People are going to laugh at me. This is like, too much.’ I thought that. I circled like three times, I’m not even joking. And finally, I was like, ‘Whatever, let’s go. Let’s just go. Let’s just go.’ I know. I don’t regret it,'" she said.
Kendall Jenner's Sheer Dress (2017)
Kendall Jenner's La Perla gown at the 2017 Met Gala left little to the imagination. The sheer dress featured intricate beading and cutouts that revealed almost all of Jenner's body. The outfit was seen as too risqué by some, and others criticized Jenner for not respecting the event's dress code.
Cardi B's "Bloody" Thom Browne Gown (2019)
Cardi B's Thom Browne gown at the 2019 Met Gala was one of the most controversial outfits in recent memory. The dress featured a massive train that required multiple handlers, as well as a headpiece that resembled a pile of gems. But it was the "bloody" detailing that caused the most controversy, with some likening the outfit to a menstrual pad.
Kim Kardashian's "Marilyn" Dress (2022)
Kim K sparked a fierce public debate when she donned Marilyn Monroe's iconic "Happy Birthday Mr. President" dress, which was designed by Jean Louis. Critics argued that the dress was a relic of the past and should not have been loaned out to Kim for wear for the risk of damage. The situation was made worse when Kim discussed the extreme weight loss measures she undertook to fit into the dress, which some people on social media called a negative message to society.
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