New York

John Galliano, spring gown, 1994, silk, synthetic taffeta, silk tulle overlay. From: “AngloMania.” Photo: Maria Valentino/MCV Photo.

John Galliano, spring gown, 1994, silk, synthetic taffeta, silk tulle overlay. From: “AngloMania.” Photo: Maria Valentino/MCV Photo.

New York

“AngloMania: Tradition and Transgression in British Fashion”

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Avenue
May 3–September 4, 2006

Curated by Andrew Bolton and Harold Koda

British fashion smacks of social revolt: Doesn’t punk doyenne Vivienne
Westwood, who dressed the Sex Pistols in the ’70s, embody the national approach? Perhaps it was a desire for revision that brought curators Bolton and Koda to position more than sixty pieces by sixteen contemporary British designers—transgressors like Westwood and Alexander McQueen, as well as traditionalists like Burberry’s Christopher Bailey—in the museum’s eighteenth-century English period rooms according to atavistic themes like the dandy and the English garden. But let’s not forget that Burberry, which sponsors the exhibition, was revived by naughty Kate Moss and that the brand’s tartan pattern has become a gang symbol for rowdy footballers—proving once and for all that, despite this exhibition’s dainty setting, the chief tradition in British fashion is transgression.