NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — High art, fashion, and a star-studded invitation list were on display Monday night for the annual costume gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

As CBS2’s Valerie Castro reported, the Met Gala is the fashion party of the year. And as in years past, it is sure to be a daring venture in design.

Rei Kawakubo, whose unconventional and eccentric pieces can be seen in her runway shows, is the designer featured at this year’s exhibit in the Met Museum of Art Costume Institute.

The exhibition features 130 of Kawakubo’s designs dating back to the 1980s.

“Obviously she’s a genius, and I think she’s been described as a designer that not only thinks outside the box — she doesn’t even acknowledge the box,” said event co-chair Anna Wintour.

PHOTOS: 2017 Met Gala: The Entrances

“Since her first show in Paris in 1981, she has consistently surprised and disrupted our expectations,” said Costume Institute exhibit coordinator Andrew Bolton. “Season after season, collection after collection, she changes our eye by upending the notions of conventional beauty.”

The yearly fundraiser to benefit the Costume Institute has become a kind of red carpet fashion show — though this year’s carpet is blue and cream.

Wintour, editor in chief at Vogue, is the mastermind behind the exclusive event. This year, her co-chairs include Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams, Gisele Bundchen, and Tom Brady.

Kawakubo, who is Japanese, is an honorary co-chair along with former ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy.

“Celebrating playfulness within a rigid formality is one of the great Japanese talents, and no one does it better than Rei,” Kennedy said.

At the event, Rihanna, Blake Lively and Nicki Minaj all graced the ivory and blue steps.

CBS Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves and his wife, Julie Chen – co-host of “The Talk” – were in attendance.

“As an Asian woman to support an Asian woman, I’m all there. She really broke a lot of boundaries with the lines of design,” Chen said of Kawakubo. “It wasn’t about making women wear corsets and looking like they’re 90 pounds, so I tip my hat to her.”

Moonves tipped his hat to his wife.

“She looks fabulous as she usually does,” Moonves said. “I never have to worry about her. She always looks spectacular.”

Designers such as Donatella Versace, Diane von Furstenburg, and Vera Wang also honored the theme.

Fashion choices included everything from ribbons and pearls to spikes, sequins, plaid and platinum.

Brady admitted he felt a little out of his comfort zone.

“I prefer football,” he said. “It’s much easier for me.”

Also form the sports world was Alex Rodriguez, who arrived with his new girlfriend, Jennifer Lopez – wearing a flowing baby blue gown.

NEW YORK, NY – MAY 01: Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez attend the “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between” Costume Institute Gala at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 1, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

Serena Williams glittered in green, debuting her baby bump along with her fiancé.

"Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between" Costume Institute Gala - Arrivals

Serena Williams attends the “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between” Costume Institute Gala at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 1, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

Kennedy also wore a Kawakubo design, and former Mayor Michael Bloomberg also walked the steps with his daughter, Georgina.

Making their appearances toward the end of the night were Chrissy Teigen, John legend, Celine Dion, Madonna, and Janelle Monáe.

There were more than 500 people on the guest list Monday night. Tickets started at $30,000 apiece.

Kawakubo, the designer behind the Commes des Garçons brand, is only the second living designer to be honored with a solo exhibition at the Met. The other was Yves Saint Laurent in 1983.


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