Fashion Designer (1969 - 2010)
ALEXANDER MCQUEEN (1969 - 2010) burst onto the fashion stage in 1992, courting controversy as headlines hailed him as the new enfant terrible. Though contentious and frequently misunderstood, he established the fashion label that is now internationally acclaimed and coveted without compromising his approach.
From the start of his career McQueen has both shocked and delighted his audience with raw presentations often depicting bleak history and anarchic politics. These shock tactics began in dimly-lit warehouses away from the staid environment of the London Fashion Week tents. His autumn/winter 1995 catwalk show in particular captured the headlines. Entitled Highland Rape, the collection featured dishevelled and battered-looking models in torn clothing. It was McQueen’s comment on the rape of the Highlands at the hands of the British; interpreted by others as a perverse and misogynistic celebration of the sexual violation of …show more content…
As the stature of the McQueen name grew, so did the twice-yearly spectacle. His weird and whimsical catwalk narratives have included models encircled in flames, drenched in rainstorms or spun like music-box dolls on revolving circles in the floor. The shows are inspired by cult films by Stanley Kubrick, Pier Paolo Pasolini and Alfred Hitchock, or by the dark photographs of Joel-Peter Witkin. It Witkin’s work which inspired McQueen’s spring/summer 2001 show. Models staggered around, trapped in a mirrored box that obscured their view of the audience. Their bandaged heads and confused expressions evoked disease both physical and psychological. The spectacle ended as the walls of the glass box shattered to the floor to reveal an obese model wearing nothing but a gas mask, surrounded by hundreds of