Monthly Archives

March 2015

    London Life Exhibitions

    Alexander Mcqueen at the V&A

    March 30, 2015

    Last week I went to the Alexander McQueen fashion exhibition at the V & A. One of the most anticipated exhibitions in recent years it did not disappoint. I will go as far as to say that it was probably amongst the best exhibitions I’ve ever seen.

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    Duck feather dress | The Horn of Plenty, A/W 2009-10 | Alexander McQueen | Model: Magdalena Frackowiak represented by dna model management New York, Image: firstVIEW

    Why is that, you may ask? Well, I see quite a few exhibitions every year and am fortunate to live in London where you get to see the cream of the crop. But what makes a great exhibition? It can be one or all of the following:

    1. You love the artist, designer, theme, subject matter
    2. The curation is exceptional
    3. Both work hand in hand

    In this case it’s definitely number 3. As I walked through the exhibition I kept thinking that Alexander McQueen would have absolutely loved it. The only major retrospective in Europe of this talented and visionary fashion designer, it celebrates McQueen’s career in the most spectacular way. A few years in the making, no costs have been spared. The attention to detail is exquisite and the production team deserves a medal. Lights, videos, rotating mannequins, holograms and the music will blow your mind and you’ll leave elated and inspired.

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    Portrait of Alexander McQueen | 1997 | Photographed by Marc Hom | © Marc Hom / Trunk Archive

    It felt like a wonderful theatrical piece of storytelling, starting with McQueen’s Central Saint Martin’s postgraduate collection of 1992 to his final designs for A/W 2010, completed after his death. The rooms became grander and more spectacular as you go along.

    I loved this Romantic Gothic room, where all walls were lined with framed mirrors.

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    Installation view of ‘Romantic Gothic’ gallery |  2015 | Alexander McQueen Savage Beauty at the V&A | Victoria and Albert Museum, London

    My absolute favourite part was the Cabinet of Curiosities, a double-height room with a plethora of box frames showcasing individual showpieces. I could have stayed there for hours, absorbing myself into McQueen’s world. Totally inspired, I was however also aware of the thin line between genius and madness.

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    Installation view of ‘Cabinet of Curiosities’ gallery | 2015 | Alexander McQueen Savage Beauty at the V&A | Victoria and Albert Museum, London

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    Butterfly headdress of hand-painted turkey feathers | La Dame Bleue,S/S 2008 | Philip Treacy for Alexander McQueen | Model: Alana Zimmer, © Anthea Simms

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    Installation view of ‘Cabinet of Curiosities’ gallery | 2015 | Alexander McQueen Savage Beauty at the V&A | Victoria and Albert Museum, London

    alexander mcqueen at the v&a - colourliving
    My sketchbook spread drawn while in the ‘Cabinet of Curiosities’ gallery (outline only) and coloured in afterwards.

    Savage Beauty is definitely worth travelling for. If you live in London or in the UK then get yourself a ticket pronto. If you live in Europe, like fashion, museums and London, then make sure not to miss this extravaganza. Check for times and tickets. It’s very popular but look at maybe visiting early in the morning.

    I cannot wait to go again.

    “The collection at the V&A never fail to intrigue and inspire me. The nation is privileged to have access to such a resource….. it’s the sort of place I’d like to be shut in overnight.”
    Alexander McQueen

    Alexander Mc Queen: Savage Beauty
    Victoria and Albert Museum
    14 March – 2 August 2015
    www.vam.ac.uk/savagebeauty

  • London Life Places

    The Wildflower Café

    A couple of weeks ago while home finding, I stopped at the delightful The Wildflower Café in West London. This café/florist by day and bistro by night is beyond…

    March 23, 2015