Last week I went to Alexander McQueen ‘Savage Beauty’ exhibition at V&A Museum. The exhibition is on since 14 March 2015 and it seems to be way too late to see it for someone who declares to be a fashion lover. Well, I don’t care. I believe that some things have their own time and for me this was a right time. The perfect time to see that show.
It’s hard to write about the exhibition that everyone has written about. It’s hard to write an interesting piece about exhibition which is… simply great. I could multiply the adjectives but that’s not a point. I don’t want to write the review either. Seeing Alexander McQueen ‘Savage Beauty’ was the experience. The experience I want to share.
I’ve booked one on the last available tickets for ‘Savage Beauty’ at 8 am. I’ve arrived much earlier and took the opportunity to walk around. A few meters away from V&A I spotted a church which occurred to be a Brompton Oratory. I love old churches so I went in. The beauty and the darkness of the places have evoked the strongest emotions. I was sitting in silence so calm like I haven’t been in a long time. I felt like I’ve been taken somewhere else for a little while. I left the church deeply moved and returned to a different reality. The crowd in front of the back entrance of the museum was getting thicker. We could feel like we’re taking part in something mysterious when our names where checked against the list and we’re using back ‘secret’ gate to get to McQueen’s world, walking through long corridors of V&A – my favourite museum in London. We were the first group that day. Due to the high interest in ‘Savage Beauty’ show, V&A made the exhibition available to the public outside the museum’s regular working hours. And I’ve never been to any museum at 8 am!
Something magical has happened when I entered the first room. Again the beauty and the darkness of the places have evoked the strongest emotions. But this time they were different. There was no silence, there was no calm. There was a mixture of opposite emotions. You don’t need to be a fan of Alexander McQueen’s designs to fully enjoy this exhibition. You don’t need to be dedicated admirer of his creativity to be blow away by what you see.
From the beginning to the very end of my journey with McQueen’s designs I was amazed. The same way I get amazed when I commune with the amazing talent and exceptional creativity. I’m always extremely drawn to talent and creativity. And I have to be honest – I’ve never been a huge fan of Alexander McQueen and I’m not going to say that I love all of his designs. I don’t. But it’s not about what you like or not. You don’t look at these pieces and think ‘oh, I would definitely wear it’ or ‘no, that’s awful, I would never put it on’. These are clothes, of course but they made you to look at the from a different perspective. For me, McQueen’s designs are much more objects of contemporary art than the pieces of wardrobe. You cannot ignore the level of creativity and craftsmanship seen in these creations. They made you to stare at them to study and admire every little detail. And they leave you speechless.
I was taking part in the exciting journey which I didn’t want to come to an end. The journey which was possible not only because I was looking at amazing creations but also because I was looking at them in the right context. That was possible thanks to Claire Wilcox – ‘Savage Beauty’ curator who did absolutely extraordinary work to create a perfect Alexander McQueen’s world where his powerful designs where put in no less powerful scenery.
I left ‘Savage Beauty’ after two hours. Totally amazed. It was one of these exhibition which makes you to see beautiful and amazing objects but what is even more important, it also evokes emotions. It makes you to feel. And those feelings stay with you much longer than pictures you have just seen.
(All videos: Victoria and Albert Museum, Photos: Iza Rem)