Big Bambú, and Cunningham Too, at Met’s Young Members Party

It was no surprise to learn that the Met’s Young Members Party doesn’t exactly put the “art” back in “party.” In theory, Thursday night’s event would provide a chance for the museum’s under-35 crowd to view two of its special exhibitions-Big Bambú, a giant site-specific installation on the roof, and American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity, which explores women’s fashion from 1890 to 1940-without the nuisance of tourists. In practice, more of the guests spent time admiring the asparagus-and-parmesan balls than either exhibition. (To be fair, they were delicious.)

We did, however, catch at least one young woman trying to turn Big Bambú into an interactive work: she swung her body around one of the larger pieces of bamboo in an improvised pole dance for the benefit of an amused friend and then accidentally dislodged it. Both scurried off looking faintly guilty.

Downstairs, American Woman was almost empty save for a few wandering fashionistas. As we crossed together into the “Bohemians” room, one of them commented, “This is, like, my favorite. I would, like, wear all of this now.” In the “Flappers” room, identical blondes in identical minidresses took pictures of each another in front of the mannequins. 

We also spotted tireless Times photographer Bill Cunningham, snapping a photo of a young woman in a bubblegum-pink frock and a matching huge feathered headpiece. (Her date, in a mint-green bow tie, paisley jacket and turtle-print pants, may have been trying a mite too hard.) Mr. Cunningham wore his trademark blue jacket and carried an OfficeMax notebook. Despite being more than twice the age limit for Young Members, he somehow fit right in.