After several planned trips were cancelled, I finally made it to the Met to see the Savage Beauty Alexander McQueen exhibit.
It was, in a word, breathtaking.
By the time I arrived, much later than planned due to a no-show Megabus, the wait for the exhibit was at 2 hours. Luckily, I noticed a sign that informed me that with the purchase of membership, you could bypass the line! One membership form later, I made my way past the thongs of of people and arrived face to face with pieces I have admired for years.
The exhibit spanned his career and included pieces from even his master’s thesis, donated by Daphne Guinness from the Isabella Blow collection, up to his last collection. There was a room devoted solely to the accessories that punctuated his shows and put the finishing touches on the outfits he created. Scattered across the walls were quotes from McQueen that detailed his philosophy in general, or the particular inspiration for a collection.
What I find amazing is how he was able to take the macabre, the bizarre, the violent, and turn it beautiful – it’s that ability that makes the exhibit’s title so apt.
Not only were the gowns stunning, but also, the way he presented his clothes was singular. Videos of his most unique “fashion shows” decorated the walls, putting in motion some of the gowns frozen in front of the viewers. The chessboard of models, the dark carousel, the Kate Moss hologram.
Most of all, the exhibit reminded me of what a genius we lost. While I admire Sarah Burton and how she has continued the Alexander McQueen brand, the man himself was inspired and twisted and dark and beautiful and irreplaceable.
The exhibit ends next Sunday.