The Costume Institute's corresponding 2020 exhibition, "About Time: Fashion and Duration," will still be put on later this year

By Dave Quinn
May 20, 2020 08:38 AM

The plug has officially been pulled on the 2020 Met Gala.

On Tuesday, the Metropolitan Museum of Art announced via Vogue that the annual fashion event would be taking the year off  amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Typically held the first Monday in May, the Costume Institute’s fundraiser — which is widely considered the fashion industry's biggest event of the year — was originally postponed indefinitely back in March, with organizers explaining at the time that emerging CDC guidelines left the gala's fate "still under discussion."

But in the statement issued on Tuesday, it was confirmed the gala would be completely canceled this year "due to the global health crisis."

The Costume Institute's corresponding 2020 exhibition, "About Time: Fashion and Duration," will still be put on later this year.

According to Vogue, the milestone exhibit tracing a century and a half of fashion in celebration of the Met’s 150th anniversary, will now open on October 29 and run through February 7, 2021.

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Cardi B at the 2019 Met Gala
| Credit: Dia Dipasupil/FilmMagic

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The museum itself is hoping to reopen its doors in mid-August,  "or perhaps a few weeks later," Met president Daniel H. Weiss told the outlet, adding that hours will likely be reduced at first and tours, talks, concerts, or events through the rest of the year would be canceled in order to meet social distancing requirements.

Weiss continued: "The Met has endured much in its 150 years and today continues as a beacon of hope for the future. This museum is also a profound reminder of the strength of the human spirit and the power of art to offer comfort, inspiration, and community. As we endure these challenging and uncertain times, we are encouraged by looking forward to the day when we can once again welcome all to enjoy the Met’s collection and exhibitions."

The Kardashian/Jenner family at the 2019 Met Gala
| Credit: Dia Dipasupil/FilmMagic

The 2020 Met Gala was set to be co-hosted by Louis Vuitton artistic director Nicolas GhesquièreVogue‘s Anna WintourLin-Manuel MirandaEmma Stone and Meryl Streep.

But this year isn't the first time the Met Gala has been canceled. The annual event — first held in 1948 as a benefit dinner, and not pegged to a particular exhibition — was canceled in 1963, following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and again in 2002, following the 9/11 attacks.

As of Wednesday morning, more than 1,536,400 people in the United States have been infected with coronavirus, according to a New York Times database. At least 91,900 have died.

All 50 states have slowly begun lifting stay-at-home orders, though New York City remains the epicenter of the breakout in with the most confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country. More than 198,710 people in the Big Apple have tested positive for the virus, the Times reports, with 20,376 deaths.

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