Savage Beauty

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty is one of my favorite coffee table books, because I bought it last year when viewing the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Alexander McQueen exhibit with my Mom. It turned out to be hands down one of the best things I’ve ever seen in my life, and we were completely blown away by the incredible creativity  and flawless workmanship on display. The exhibition was one of the Met’s most popular of all time, and they even extended the run because so many people were dying to see it. Here are a few of my favorite images from the book that bring to mind the awe I felt when viewing these items in person:

A very cool hallmark of McQueen’s aesthetic was the way he incorporated nature into his garments, even crafting whole pieces out of materials like clamshells:

On this one below he used microscope specimen slides (remember, from biology class?), dyed red. How amazing is that? I never would’ve realized what they were had it not been pointed out to me:

Some of the materials he used might traditionally be seen as ugly or just boring (like those biology slides), but he turned them into something amazing and beautiful:

Through the exhibit, I learned that McQueen’s designs went a LOT deeper than just being something pretty or shocking to look at. His collections encompassed wide ranging themes, from his Scottish heritage, to nature, life, death, gothic Victorian elements, cultural diversity, and a lot more. It really is a crime that we’ll never again see any new work from this creative genius, and never know what else he was capable of. Sadly, maybe it’s not possible to hold such beauty and imagination inside without also possessing it’s dark opposite.

All images by Jackie for York Avenue, from Alexander McQueen: Savage Beautyï»ż


  1. lacoquettedelamode says: January 19, 2012

    Thank you for sharing this- he offers such a unique perspective on beauty!

    XX Kathryn

  2. Holly says: January 19, 2012

    Gorgeous! I'm so jealous of you! I think this book is going on my wishlist…

  3. Christina says: January 19, 2012

    I have this book too, it's amazing! Great buy

  4. Leslie says: January 19, 2012

    Those images are incredible. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Megan Abigail Chandler says: January 19, 2012

    so jealous you got to see it!

  6. bevy says: January 19, 2012

    Talk about a work of art! So sad the world lost such a dynamic artist.

  7. Alexa says: January 19, 2012

    Wow these photos are incredible. What an amazing exhibit.

  8. The PvdH Journal says: January 19, 2012

    Oh I never made it out for NY for the exhibit, but I did order the book via Amazon and it is one of my favourites!

  9. Josie says: January 19, 2012

    He really was a total genius. I like the quote and the idea of beauty coming from ugliness.

  10. Jessica Rowe {The Aestate} says: January 19, 2012

    Awww, I love McQueen 🙁 He really had such a beautiful way of seeing things. Love that quote, too.

  11. Emily says: January 20, 2012

    OMG its a book!!!!? I am soo mad I missed it this summer at the museum, I really have no excuse since I worked in the city too.

  12. Natalie says: January 20, 2012

    I really wish I could have gone to that exhibit!

  13. Ashley says: January 20, 2012

    I've never seen this as a book!! Thanks for sharing it!

  14. fenni yorena says: January 20, 2012

    Alexander McQueen. He's the genius. I really love this post! I'm following you. hope you'll follow me back 🙂

  15. Paolita@BerryHaute says: January 20, 2012

    Beautiful post, I would have loved to have seen this exhibition.

  16. Carrie Teal says: January 20, 2012

    This looks like an awesome book , I love all of the different textures used.

  17. just me says: January 20, 2012

    amazing!!! this man was genious…

  18. Nuké says: January 22, 2012

    Love love love his creation. I think it is such a loss for the Fashion World with his passing. Thank you for sharing this

    Love ur blog

    Shall we follow each other?

Leave a Reply