Hail To McQueen!

If you have followed the fashion world at all in the past 20 years, then the name McQueen is sure to pop up quite frequently--and not Steve McQueen! And if you still don't know who he is, then perhaps you should check out some highlights from the latest exhibit honoring his triumphantly vivid and hauntingly beautiful legacy: Savage Beauty

There is no doubt that McQueen was one of the most imaginative pioneers in modern fashion, essentially using his endless creativity to paint pictures with fabric and weave stories through stitching. His goal was always to break the constraints of traditional design whilst still upholding its fundamentals principles--confidence, precision and the of course, the belief in endless possibilities!


Dante, autumn/winter 1996–97

Black wool felt embroidered with gold bullion cord

From the collection of Isabella Blow courtesy of the Hon. Daphne Guinness

Photograph © Sølve Sundsbø / Art + Commerce

“I spent a long time learning how to construct clothes, which is important to do before you can deconstruct them.”
-- Self Service, Spring/Summer 2002

By breaking away from traditional, finite notions of construction, Alex was able to push the boundaries of his work by looking deep into his own mind and channeling the more detailed and imaginative aspects of fashion that were rarely seen to this day. A real type of raw originality and daring gusto that made his work the stuff of dreams [...and the cinematic costume designers of Pan's Labyrinth might salivate over].
Often influenced by his own Scottish heritage, McQueen was also adamant about implementing the cultures from throughout Europe and various historical periods while at the same time romanticizing them. By adding modern elements, these nationalistic collections took on a whole new life.
“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.” --McQueen

Alexander McQueen (British, 1969–2010)


Widows of Culloden, autumn/winter 2006–7

Dress of McQueen wool tartan; top of nude silk net appliquéd with black lace; underskirt of cream silk tulle

Courtesy of Alexander McQueen

Photograph © Sølve Sundsbø / Art + Commerce

Romantic Gothic and Cabinet of Curiosities

Combining elements of horror and Gothic romanticism, each piece in this set reflects his work from different points in his career; from
Dante (autumn/winter 1996–97), Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (autumn/winter 2002–3), and the posthumous, unofficially entitled Angels and Demons (autumn/winter 2010–11). 
For more incredible images, be sure to check out The MET where you can get a closer look at just how intricate and beautifully savage these designs truly are!
Gallery photography by The Photograph Studio, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting and philosophical designer McQueen is.., I so enjoy reading his thoughts behind his design....