When Felipe Oliveira Baptista joined Kenzo in the summer of 2019, its founder confided in him: “Fashion seems so complicated now. I couldn’t do it.” To Kenzō Takada, who sold his house to LVMH in 1993, fashion had to come from the heart rather than the market department. “Intuition is a banned word at fashion houses these days. It’s as if there’s no space for it. But there was a lot of that in him,” Oliveira Baptista said on a video call from Paris this week, reflecting on the legacy of Takada, who died in October last year aged 81. The sentiment would lay the foundation for the Portuguese designer’s new era at Kenzo: “It was the best piece of advice.”
While this year’s Met gala invited attendees to—first and foremost—contemplate American fashion, no look was complete without an expertly calibrated beauty look. The theme, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion,” and exhibition embody themes of joy, rebellion, and nostalgia—feelings that were mirrored in the myriad hair and makeup looks tonight.