MANUS X MACHINA: BEHIND THE SCENES OF THE 2016 MET GALA'S SECRET INSTALLATION
The 2016 Met Gala exhibit, 'Manus x Machina: Fashion in the Age of Technology', explores how designers have combined hand and machine-made techniques and processes in order to create haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear. The exhibit presents masterpieces by designers such as Karl Lagerfeld, Iris Van Herpen and Issey Miyake to give new perspective to the notion of 'machine-made' clothing.
"Instead of seeing the hand and the machine as dichotomous, the show attempts to show it more as a continuum or spectrum of practice. I think technology should be used especially by good designers, as a way to enhance their design practice. And I think that within fashion people sort of cling on to those notions of the haute couture and ready-to-wear. And I think what I'm finding is that the gap is really diminishing."
-- Andrew Bolton, Curator
The exhibits set design was inspired by Diderot's Encyclopedia, the first ever written collection of the world's knowledge that enlightened it's readers and demanded change in narrow perception. To add to the exhibits aesthetic on opening night, a surprise installation of human-models-turned-robots by renowned makeup artist Pat McGrath and hairstylist Jimmy Paul for Bumble and bumble greeted the Met Gala's red carpet guests.
Mischa G., Bb stylist and member of Jimmy Paul's Met Gala team, gives us a behind the scenes look at how the Bumble team helped pull it all together:
To compliment McGrath's cyborg face masks and ghostly white spider lashes, Jimmy Paul and team decided on a tightly-wound, metallic colored bun that was meant to be stiff, neat and shiny like a robot.
First, the models hair needed to be clean and swept back into a perfect tight ponytail at the occipital of the head. The hair line had to be clean and neat to allow McGrath's metal face masks to go easily over it.
The hair was then tightly braided and wound into a perfect ballerina bun. After being pulled, tightened and wound, the hair was then doused in white hairspray as a base for the final touch: metallic silver spray that dried like a rock hard lacquer.
Once the models achieved robotic perfection, they were placed in a straight line by an intricate display of red and white roses that swirled from floor to ceiling at the very end of the red carpet to surprise the guests who walked it.