Kim Kardashian's Met Gala Dress Angered Conservators So Much That the International Council of Museums Had to Make a Statement

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Following a fit of public outrage, much of it from textile conservators, over Kim Kardashian wearing an iconic Marilyn Monroe dress to the Met Gala, the International Council of Museums has issued renewed guidelines on handling historic garments.

Earlier this month, Kardashian infamously wore the dress that Monroe had on in 1962 when she sang “Happy Birthday Mr. President” to John F. Kennedy at Madison Square Garden. Kardashian borrowed the dress from a Ripley’s Believe It or Not! collection in Orlando, not an accredited museum. The novelty museum bought the work at auction in 2016 for $4.8 million.

Although she wore the dress only on the museum’s red carpet, and changed into a replica once inside, conservators, including the former head of the Met’s fashion conservation department, Sarah Scarturro, blasted the socialite.

Marilyn Monroe and writer Jose Bolanos , sit at a dining table during the Golden Globes. Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Marilyn Monroe and writer Jose Bolanos , sit at a dining table during the Golden Globes. Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

“When I was the head of the Costume Institute’s conservation lab, I had to swat off requests by people (including Anna Wintour) to have irreplaceable objects in the collection be worn by models and celebrities,” Scarturro said.

Now, ICOM has stepped in.

“Historic garments should not be worn by anybody, public or private figures,” the organization said in a statement following the uproar. “Prevention is better than cure. Wrong treatment will destroy an object forever.”

Also incuded are guidelines not to expose such garments to high levels of light, including to flash photography.

Whether these stringent guidelines will dissuade those able to access historic garments from wearing them is yet to be seen.

On the evening of the Met Gala, Kardashian also donned a replica of another Monroe dress: a stunning green sequined Norman Norell gown the actress wore to accept her Golden Globe award for being a “world film favorite” in 1962. Kardashian was able to have the dress copied due to access provided by Heritage Auctions.

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Source Credit:  Content and images from Artnet News.  Read the original article - https://news.artnet.com/art-world/kim-kardashian-marilyn-monroe-dress-2113907