Last Chance to See McQueen’s “Savage Beauty”

New York—Run, don’t walk to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, as the astounding “Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty” exhibition ends August 7 and you do not want to miss this.

While the show has received lots of press, nothing will prepare you for seeing the exhibition live. The designs, displays, sets and staging are awe-inspiring, and the Met worked closely with the team that handles McQueen’s theatrical runway shows. Piped in music fills the various themed rooms, from the eerily ethereal to dramatic orchestral.

McQueen played with polar opposites—life/death, lightness/darkness, predator/prey and man/machine—and these dichotomies portray the inner mind of McQueen, who tragically took his own life last year.

Astounding Accessories

Some accents are built into the apparel, such as taxidermy crocodile heads and animal horns, but there are plenty of stand-alone accessories to astound, all housed in a separate room. The area is set up like a Victorian “cabinet of curiosities” celebrating the macabre.

The accessories on display were used in his runway shows and in many cases there are video loops showing models wearing them on the catwalk.

Some highlights:

  • A metal spine corset (complete with tail), that models wore over their dresses
  • A coiled corset inspired by African neckpieces and created by jeweler Shaune Leane.
  • A signature minaudiere boxed clutch lets the wearer slide through her fingers into affixed rings.
  • Carved wooden prosthetic boots
  • A headpiece made from pheasant feathers painted to resemble a tangle of red butterflies
  • Angel wings carved out of balsa wood
  • The famed armadillo shoe from his final collection and other alien-like footwear

Want to take a piece of the exhibition home with you? There’s always this armadillo shoe ornament, selling at the gift store.

One caveat: The show is always crowded, so get there early!

For a more comprehensive view of the offerings on display, click here.

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Lauren Parker, Accessories Magazine

Lauren Parker, Editor-in-Chief, Accessories Magazine
As Editor-in-Chief of Accessories Magazine for the past 12 years, Lauren Parker has covered accessories both from a retail business perspective and a fashion point of view. In previous full-time magazine jobs and freelance gigs, she’s written about practically every angle of fashion lifestyle living, including women's fashion accessories, fine jewelry, Caribbean travel, private jets, Hampton’s real estate, the New York art scene, the bridal industry, men’s lifestyle and being a mom. She loves meeting designers and seeing how their latest offerings capture the current zeitgeist and fit into the entire cultural and social picture.