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Azzedine Alaia, one of my favorite designers in the days when I covered fashion, has refused to allow models to wear seven of his gowns to the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute gala tonight, according to Cathy Horyn in the New York Times: “‘It would have been silly to have seven girls wearing my dresses at the party and not have anything of mine in the exhibit,’ he said.” Horyn says “he blamed the omission not on the Met’s chief costume curator Harold Koda, but rather on Anna Wintour, the editor in chief of Vogue, who organizes the party. ‘She has too much power over this museum,’ he said.” Alaia’s comments reflect some of mine in yesterday’s New York Post, which has inspired New York Magazine’s The Cut to ask its readers if they care only about fashion or might go see Philippe de Montebello‘s expensive Duccio as well on their next visit to the museum. One commenter aimed this barb at me: “How elitist must you be to consider Anna Wintour lowbrow? So what about the throngs that enter the museum daily? He must really dislike those barbarians. I’ve been in the museum quite a few times, and I touched stuff – okay, just handrails and things you’re allowed to touch, but still. My plebian cooties are all over the place. That should send Mr. Gross into the streets screaming UNCLEAN!!! What is a public space for, if not the public?” Another commenter answered, “I may be lowbrow but I know enough not to trust a commenter’s take on a web site’s take on a tabloid’s take on a book. I think I’ll actually read the book.” The Post didn’t misquote me — quite the contrary, but I don’t agree with its premise that Wintour alone is a bob-haired Hercules bringing down the temple of art tonight. The first commenter above might learn a few things about the museum and trustees like Wintour — and how they’ve long treated the unwashed mob — if he or she actually reads Rogues’ Gallery (which is in stores tomorrow). I agree with Alaia about Harold Koda, too. He has put on marvelous shows ever since his days at F.I.T., and is a delightful and erudite man, and I say that even though, like the rest of the Met’s curators, he wasn’t allowed to give an interview for the book. Oh, and Anna? If that comment above worries you at all, try some Purell. Us true plebians swear by it.