Just two days after the close of the Metropolitan Museum’s blockbuster 2018 Costume Institute show “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination”—its most-visited exhibition ever—the institute has announced its next outing: a show about camp fashion and irony inspired by the writings of Susan Sontag.

“We are going through an extreme camp moment,” Costume Institute curator Andrew Bolton told the New York Times, adding that camp can be a powerful political tool, “especially for marginalized cultures.” (Even President Trump is a very camp figure, Bolton argued.)

Left: An Alessandro Michele for Gucci ensemble. Right: Spring 2016 Marc Jacobs ensembles. Photo by Johnny Dufort, courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Quickly switching gears from the sacred to the profane, “Camp: Notes on Fashion” will touch on everything from the origins of camp at the palace of Versailles in the 17th century, at the lavish court of Louis XIV, to the Stonewall riots in New York and the embrace of camp by the queer community. Camp fashion is characterized as over-the-top, pushing back against conservatism, and elevating a kind of flamboyance that at first blush may seem totally frivolous. Read more