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A tribute to late Karl Lagerfeld

Here comes Karl.

Vogue revealed on Friday that the 2023 Met Gala theme will pay tribute to the late Karl Lagerfeld nearly four years after his death from pancreatic cancer at the age of 85.

The exhibition, called “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty,” will explore the illustrious designer’s career, which spanned from 1954 to 2019 across multiple high-fashion brands, including Balmain, Chloé, Fendi, Chanel and his own eponymous line.

In addition to being heavily involved in the 2015 Chanel-themed event, Lagerfeld was a fixture at the Met Gala over the years, as he was close friends with Vogue Editor-in-chief Anna Wintour and one of the industry’s most lauded names.

“Karl never tired of telling me that fashion did not belong in a museum,” the Costume Institute’s Wendy Yu Curator in Charge, Andrew Bolton, told Vogue.

Karl Lagerfeld and Blake Lively
Lagerfeld was a fixture of the Met Gala red carpet. Here, he’s pictured with Blake Lively at the 2011 event that honored the late Alexander McQueen.

“When we worked on the Chanel show together he was incredibly generous in what he lent, but he was completely disinterested in the exhibition itself! He would say, ‘Fashion is not art — fashion belongs on the street, on women’s bodies, on men’s bodies.’”

In this spirit, Bolton said that he will not be gathering a traditional retrospective for the museum exhibit for which the gala celebrates, but rather focusing on Lagerfeld’s penchant for sketches and drawings. All 150 of the selected looks will be accompanied by their original sketches.

Karl Lagerfeld
Lagerfeld died in 2019 at the age of 85 from pancreatic cancer.
Getty Images

Chanel will serve as “chief sponsor” of the exhibit while “major support” will be given by Fendi and Karl Lagerfeld the fashion brand and Condé Nast will “add additional funding,” according to Vogue.

Seventh On Sale Benefit

Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour were the closest of friends for many decades. They’re pictured here in 1991.

Ron Galella Collection via Getty

Karl Lagerfeld and Rachel Bilson Debut the Magnum Ice Cream Film Series During Tribeca Film Festival

Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour were the closest of friends for many decades. They’re pictured here in 2011.

Stephen Lovekin

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It’s not yet known who will serve as hosts of the upcoming event, though Lagerfeld was particularly close with Naomi Campbell, Kim Kardashian, Kristen Stewart, Penelope Cruz, Diane Kruger, 2017 Met Gala host Pharrell Williams, 2022 Met Gala host Blake Lively, Cara Delevingne, who fêted her Cara Loves Karl line in Paris earlier this week, and more.

The star-studded red carpet event will take place on May 1, 2023, and the accompanying exhibition will be on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art from May 5 to July 16.

Karl Lagerfeld 1960
Lagerfeld started his career in the 1950s and continued to prominence through his death.
Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images

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