The visionary McQueen. What Lee left us.
We were in the ’90s, and the fashion boom was extroverted. Characters like Gianni Versace were those who had conquered the catwalk in recent years. Others like Martin Margiela reigned in the novelty, but, it was Lee Alexander McQueen, a British genius, who taught us how to empower women through garments. A genius like him, born knowing what he is about to create. At only 16 years, Lee already had a vision of fashion; not only different but also with an extremely extroverted objective. With a bold and theatrical style, McQueen was characterized by having a clear message: that the woman feels safe not only for who she is but for the clothes she is wearing. Give voice to the woman through details, volume, prints, and flown.
McQueen graduated from Saint Martins College of Art & Design and received his master’s degree in fashion design in 1992.
After several creations as an independent designer, McQueen was named Chief Designer of Louis Vuitton-owned Givenchy. But it was clear that McQueen was a creative genius that was going to break all the expectations and beliefs of the current fashion of the moment.
A designer like him was able to create pieces that only in dreams one could imagine, but no, McQueen could carry an idea and make it come true. But as we know, working for others was not their thing. Alexander McQueen was born to create his pieces and for the world to see what he was capable of. Novelty pieces are, little to say, what McQueen built were garments totally beyond the reach of the human mind, and very few marks were going to allow to break with the identity that they had been working.
“I treated Givenchy badly. It was just money to me. But there was nothing I could do: the only way it would have worked would have been if they had allowed me to change the whole concept of the house, to give it a new identity, and they never wanted me to do that.”
His vision of fashion was beyond anything we could imagine at that time. His catwalks were more than selling trends, they were a piece of art in the middle of a scenario decorated as a theater. He couldn’t think about fashion and not relate it to something extraordinary. It was something obvious that he would never had worked for other brands. Let’s not forget that his first collection, for the university, was inspired by the character of Jack The Ripper. His mind was totally blinded because of his perception of women appearance. That pattern of the woman was not usual.
He creates a monster of fashion.
As we know he didn’t believe in the commercial trends that the world was selling, he creates his own world, Leather tailoring, dresses with lace asymmetrical hello, extravagant hats created by Philip Treacy, feathers, embroidery, degraded prints and digital prints, different seasons, different inspirations, the same universe of creativity. A sensitive man, surrounded by ghosts and planes of darkness that made Alexander McQueen have the ability to imagine and visualize garments that nobody but he could create. Tormented and misunderstood, with a provocative and irreverent attitude towards the system, the genius transmitted those qualities when he took the needle and the scissors are unique in combining street feeling with the purest English baroque style.
His was not just concentrated in the clothes. Their catwalks were more than an ordinary event. From the clothes to the makeup, the hats, the sound, the setting everything had a meaning and a way to the dark message that McQueen wanted to convey. Let’s not forget that this creative went beyond fashion itself. All his collections were based on moments of his life, stories, inspired by events, books, women, etc. All of his productions had something new, something different, something that no other designer had done or presented. One of the most outstanding and unforgettable fashion shows of this designer was that of Paris Fashion Week Fall 2006. Kate Moss appeared on the catwalk through a Hologram. Awesome! We can not forget this event since it was something totally shocking for the world of fashion and catwalks.
While today the brand is very well represented by a creative and great friend of the designer, Sarah Burton, the real question is, What has Alexander McQueen left us?
Today the brand is rather a commercial descent of the great ideas and innovative ideas of Lee. Alexander McQueen began by representing the total freedom of expression in many of the aspects that today we are discussing in society. Brimming with powerful modernity, this provocative artist reflected his fascination with beauty and the natural world.
Under all that aura of wild sensations that surrounds his creations, resides his uniqueness and bizarre talent so far. Quality clothing as the basis of their collections. Together with the impressive narrative capacity, are responsible for a large part of their international prestige.
His focus and he remains one of the brands, was to modify and embellish the female silhouette. McQueen was always in another dimension when it was related to fashion. He based his creations with a high level of craftsmanship and great tailoring techniques. Exquisite workmanship and an expert cut supported even the most extreme designs and the theatrical fashion shows. If an external appearance has a scaffolding of magnificent construction on which to lean. Even the most extravagant designs can be full of meaning.
Today we remember him as the creator of imperial haute couture, where details and luxury were based on dark ghosts from the same designer creating unique and unrepeatable pieces.