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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

About Time: Fashion and Duration


Metropolitan Museum of Art / New York

On the milestone of the Met Museum’s 150th birthday, and made possible by Louis Vuitton, the Costume Institute celebrates with an exhibition that addresses that most amorphous subject—time—and does so in scintillating style. The show fills two adjacent galleries, except they are galleries no longer, but giant clocks, with rod-shaped LED lights marking the minutes. Each minute offers a pair of garments—there are 60 “minutes” in all—that embodies two philosophies: Charles Baudelaire’s view of time as a chronological succession of moments, and Henri Bergson’s view that past and present forever coexist and mix. This is time viewed through the prism of fashion. The exhibition’s “ghost narrator,” the writer Virginia Woolf—“The worn voices of clocks repeated the fact of the hour all night long”—brings a poignant literary dimension to a brilliant spacial design. A must see. —L.J.

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