The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Costume Institute and the Department of Asian Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibits China: Through the Looking Glass. Featuring more than 140 examples of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear alongside masterpieces of Chinese art, the exhibition explores the impact of Chinese aesthetics on Western fashion and how China has fueled the fashionable imagination for centuries.
Renowned Hong Kong filmmaker Wong Kar-wai is the exhibition's artistic director. His films include Chungking Express, In the Mood for Love, and most recently The Grandmaster. Wong Kar-wai takes visitors on a cinematic journey through the galleries, interweaving cinema and fashion through his selection of music and edited film montages. These filmic representations of China reveal how our visions of China are shaped by narratives that draw upon popular culture, and serve as a medium through which we understand the richness of Chinese history.
Curator Andrew Bolton of the Costume Institute explains to NY Mag “I think that when it comes to China, at least with fashion designers, their first entry is really through film. A lot of their impressions of China are actually formed through filmic references. It was important for us to use them as a bridge, in a way.”
China: Through the Looking Glass is on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from May 7- August 16, 2015.
All photographs are courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Films referenced in China: Through the Looking Glass:
In the Mood for Love, 2000, directed by Wong Kar-wai
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, 2000, directed by Ang Lee
Hero, 2002, directed by Zhang Yimou
Farewell My Concubine, 1993, directed by Chen Kaige