Saturday, August 13, 2011


   Alexander McQueen (1969-2010) was one of the most influential, imaginative, and inspirational designers at the turn of the millennium. His fashions both challenged and expanded the conventional parameters of clothing beyond utility to a compelling expression of culture, politics, and identity.
   Focusing on the most iconic and acclaimed designs of his prolific career, The Costume Institute organized this year's most-talked-about exhibition "Alexander McQueen: Savage beauty". It was held at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, May 4–August 7, 2011. Exhibition included Costumes from Central Saint Martins Postgraduate collection of 1992 to his final runway presentation, which took place after his death in February 2010. It featured approximately hundred ensembles and seventy accessories from Mr. McQueen's prolific ninteen-year career.

The Romantic Mind

“You’ve got to know the rules to break them. That’s what I’m here for, to demolish the rules but to keep the tradition.”
—Alexander McQueen

Romantic Gothic and Cabinet of Curiosities

“People find my things sometimes aggressive. But I don’t see it as aggressive. I see it as romantic, dealing with a dark side of personality.”
—Alexander McQueen

Romantic Nationalism

“The reason I’m patriotic about Scotland is because I think it’s been dealt a really hard hand. It’s marketed the world over as . . . haggis . . . bagpipes. But no one ever puts anything back into it.”
—Alexander McQueen

Romantic Exoticism

“I want to be honest about the world that we live in, and sometimes my political persuasions come through in my work. Fashion can be really racist, looking at the clothes of other cultures as costumes. . . . That’s mundane and it’s old hat. Let’s break down some barriers.”
—Alexander McQueen

Romantic Primitivism

“I try to push the silhouette. To change the silhouette is to change the thinking of how we look. What I do is look at ancient African tribes, and the way they dress. The rituals of how they dress. . . . There’s a lot of tribalism in the collections.”
—Alexander McQueen

Romantic Naturalism

“I have always loved the mechanics of nature and to a greater or lesser extent my work is always informed by that.”
—Alexander McQueen

 Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (Metropolitan Museum of Art)
Andrew Bolton (Author), Solve Sundsbo (Photographer), Tim Blanks (Contributor), Susannah Frankel (Contributor)