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Alexander McQueen: Savage Beautyby Andrew Bolton
"I find beauty in the grotesque, like most artists. I have to force people to look at things."
Published in conjunction with an exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty offers a stunning retrospective of the late designer's career, showcasing garments just as likely to make your skin crawl as they are to make you swoon. True to McQueen's aesthetic, Savage Beauty is at once visually arresting, well-constructed, and unsettling (note: those aren't mannequins), making it a must-have for those already familiar with McQueen's work, and a captivating introduction for the rest.
Synopses & Reviews
Arguably the most influential, imaginative, and provocative designer of his generation, Alexander McQueen both challenged and expanded fashion conventions to express ideas about race, class, sexuality, religion, and the environment. Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty examines the full breadth of the designers career, from the start of his fledgling label to the triumphs of his own world-renowned London house. It features his most iconic and radical designs, revealing how McQueen adapted and combined the fundamentals of Savile Row tailoring, the specialized techniques of haute couture, and technological innovation to achieve his distinctive aesthetic. It also focuses on the highly sophisticated narrative structures underpinning his collections and extravagant runway presentations, with their echoes of avant-garde installation and performance art.
Published to coincide with an exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art organized by The Costume Institute, this stunning book includes a preface by Andrew Bolton; an introduction by Susannah Frankel; an interview by Tim Blanks with Sarah Burton, creative director of the house of Alexander McQueen; illuminating quotes from the designer himself; provocative and captivating new photography by renowned photographer Sølve Sundsbø; and a lenticular cover by Gary James McQueen.
Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty celebrates the astounding creativity and originality of a designer who relentlessly questioned and confronted the requisites of fashion.
"I never conformed to any sort of fashion ideal. My idea was always to show reality, even though I started at Savile Row and ended up at Givenchy in Paris; to depict the times I live in." —Alexander McQueen, Harper's Bazaar, September 2008
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, this stunning book examines McQueen's inimitable technical virtuosity and its subversion of traditional tailoring and dressmaking practices.
The book also focuses on the highly sophisticated narrative structures found in McQueen's collections and in his astonishing and extravagant runway presentations, which suggested the most avant-garde installation and performance art. Intended as an assessment of Alexander McQueen's entire career, the book includes in-depth studies of six collections that illustrate and encapsulate thematic chapters as well as an interview with Sarah Burton, the new creative director of Alexander McQueen who had been the designer's right-hand design aide since 1996.
About the Author
Andrew Bolton is Curator at The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Susannah Frankel is fashion editor of The Independent newspaper. Tim Blanks is contributing editor of Style.com.
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