Savage Beauty: Inside the Mind of A Legend
Alexander McQueen’s exhibit at the Met is simply put, the most beautiful temporary exhibit at a museum that I have ever seen. I had read tons of articles on the exhibit and seen countless photos online, but nothing can possibly prepare you for seeing this man’s artistic genius in reality. The line was over a half an hour’s wait on a weekday, I can’t imagine what the line is like on weekends, but however long it is, it’s worth it! Not only is every article of clothing in this exhibit a sheer masterpiece, the set up of the show is stunning, and truly does the clothes justice.
The showcase is not organized by chronological collections, but by periods in his design. Alexander McQueen was a true artist in every sense, and blended many different textiles to create icons of gothic romanticism. It is clear when you walk through this show just how dark McQueen’s mind. He was very interested in blending the beautiful and the atrocious, and used what he referred to as a ‘fetishism of texture.’ Some of his clothing was made of balsa wood, leather, plastic, or duck feathers. It is truly inspired.
I stopped and read every single quote and summary in the exhibit, and so I think it took me about an hour to get through it. You can’t help but examine every article of clothing in those rooms. You are not allowed to take pictures, but I am a rebel renegade and I took pictures anyway! While I have included a few pictures that I personally took, I had to take pictures fast and the quality was compromised, so I have included other pictures from the internet so you get the full effect of the gorgeousness.
My favorite room was one where all articles of clothing and accessories were placed in shelves, and also in shelves were giant tvs featuring clips from his runway shows. The exhibit uses different multimedia, including tvs, wind machines, a large light box sort of display case, and projectors. I was also tremendously glad they found a way to feature my favorite ever McQueen moment, the most beautiful thing to ever happen on a runway, the Kate Moss hologram from his Fall 2006 runway show.
Despite all the bells and whistles of the showcase, the clothing was still the most beautiful part of the entire exhibit that featured over a 100 garments! The clothing was exquisite. The first two pieces when you enter the exhibit is a red dress made of feathers and plastic, and a white gown made of shells. It is to die for!!! A few of my favorite pieces were a black dress made of duck feathers entitled ‘The Horn of Plenty’ from his 2009-10 collection, and also a white dress made with a gold duck feather coat from the same collection. It is stunning! My last favorite piece is a white lace dress with horns on a head piece from his Fall 2006 collection, the Widows of Culloden.
While many of the press photos feature the clothing against a gray backdrop, this is NOT how they are featured in the showcase, and do the entire display no justice. The gift shop at the end of the exhibit is not to be missed either! I don’t think I have ever hit up a museum gift shop and purchased about a million things before, but I couldn’t help myself. Not only did I purchase several beautiful postcards of the clothing featured in the show, I bought a magnet, and last and most importantly, I bought an Armadillo shoe knick knack, and it’s my new favorite thing!! I first saw McQueen’s Armadillo shoe on Demi Moore in Harper’s Bazaar April photo shoot from 2010. Since then Lady Gaga and other celebrities have been seen wearing them, and they have become an emblem of McQueen’s. When I saw this teeny little Armadillo shoe replica, I HAD to have it! There is also a huge Alexander McQueen coffee table book they were selling, and a poster of the showcase I had to resist from buying. After coming down from the high of the exhibit, however, it is so hard to resist purchasing a McQueen wonderland of stuff!
The entire exhibit is absolutely not to be missed, I could not believe that these pieces were in front of me. Alexander McQueen was a true visionary, and his clothing will stand the test of time as some of the greatest art ever made in the world of fashion. The world has lost a legend and creative force. If you appreciate fashion even in the slightest, you need to high-tail it to the Met, as soon as possible. I cannot wait to see it again before it leaves the Met in July.