Savage Beauty | Haute Macabre

Savage Beauty

The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art will be exhibiting Alexander McQueen : Savage Beauty, opening to the public May 4.  The exhibit will contain approximately 100 pieces, celebrating a retrospective of the late designer’s full career.  If you don’t find yourself in New York City for the show, the accompanying book will be available for purchase.

According to the Met’s press release, the gallery will be divided into five showcases of recurring themes :

“The Savage Mind” which will examine his subversion of traditional tailoring and dressmaking practices through displacement and deconstruction.

“Romantic Gothic” will highlight McQueen’s narrative approach to fashion and illuminate his engagement with Romantic literary traditions such as death, decay, and darkness.  It will also reveal the main characters of his collections, including emme fatales and anti-heroes such as pirates and highwaymen.

“Romantic Nationalism” will look at McQueen’s fascination with the distant past.

“Romantic Exoticism” will examine his focus on distant places.

Romantic Primitivism” will explore McQueen’s engagement with the ideal of the “noble savage”.

Five of McQueen’s landmark collections that explore his engagement with the Romantic sublime and the dialects of beauty and horror will be interspersed among the galleries – Dante (autumn/winter 1996-97), Number 13 (spring/summer 1999), VOSS (spring/summer 2001), Irere (spring/summer 2003), and Plato’s Atlantis (spring/summer 2010).  “Cabinet of Curiosities” will include various atavistic and fetishized objects often produced with milliner Philip Treacy and jeweler Shaun Leane, longtime collaborators of McQueen’s.  A separate screening room will display videos of McQueen’s renowned runway presentations.

More preview images after the jump!

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12 Comment

  1. Omg… it’s freaking amazing! Granted some creations are a little scary, and would probably even outdo Lady Gaga (or make her proud). Am thinking why didn’t they have this when I was in NYC?! =(

  2. This man was the god of inspiration, design and beauty! How he is missed! Can this exhibition tour the world please. We soooo need to see this in Australia!

  3. ZOMG! I so am going to go to this (I go into NYC once a month anyway!) and sketch EVERYTHING. THANK YOU for posting about this!!!!!!

  4. I’ve been casually browsing expedia for rates to NYC, doubt I’ll make it. Just from the previews I’m 99% sure I’ll be buying this book though. I was disappointed with the McQueen book that is currently out, my first impression of browsing through it was that there were more pictures of his more recent collections (let’s say of the last 6-7 yrs) which is very easy to find all those pictures online. I would have liked to see pictures of his earlier collections and his work at Givenchy, which is harder to come across.

    -ps. another exhibit to look forward to is the Daphne Guinness one slated around Septemberish of this year.

  5. Oh my gods… I am going home from NYC on the 6th. I can squeeze this in, I MUST squeeze this in. How is that for timing for a two week US trip?