Alexander McQueen Invites 12 Women Artists to Contribute to ‘PROCESS’ For Pre-A/W 2022 Collection
Having graduated from Central Saint Martins in 1992, Alexander McQueen was primed to be swept up into what would ultimately be labeled “Cool Britannia,” a very much London based phenomenon that would give rise to the likes of Blur and Pulp, artist-provocateurs Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin and Jenny Saville (the YBAs), and a new generation of fashion designers like he, John Galliano and Stella McCartney. All played keenly off one another’s creative energies.
So yes, art is a distinct part of the McQueen DNA, being an essential facet of his inspiration before his truly tragic passing in 2010; the relationship carries on still to this day at his exalted namesake fashion house. The latest such project is a particularly insightful one, as it honors what many creatives will agree is the most essential aspect of their working methodology; and ‘PROCESS’ brings together the work of a dozen carefully chosen contemporary artists, in conversation with Creative Director Sarah Burton‘s stunning Pre-Autumn/Winter 2022 collection.
Burton explains, “I wanted to engage in a new creative dialogue with the collection this season and see how the artists interpreted the work that we created in the studio. It’s been very interesting to see how creativity has sprung from so many different perspectives, and the outcomes have been varied and beautiful.”
Curiously, no specific reason was stated – but all twelve of the artists chosen were in fact women (It is a collection for women, so perhaps that?), hailing from points across the globe, and representing various disciplines. So Spanish documentarian Cristina de Middel; American model/photographer Guinevere van Seenus; Korean ceramicist Jennie Jieun Lee; Chinese artist/activist Bingyi; and London based artist/photographer Marcia Michael, to name but several. The works they created for the project are meant as a kind of creative/ideological response to the clothes themselves, which the house describes in the overall as, “Closer to the earth. Grounded. A focus on silhouette.”
Particular highlights of the collection include off-the-shoulder corset dresses in yellow poly faille; asymmetric-drape-skirted black leather dresses with black scalloped lingerie lace detailing (these are truly the things we love McQueen for); oversized double breasted coats w/ asymmetric drape and black & white houndstooth detailing; biker jackets with zipped cape sleeves + kickback pencil skirts in burnished Welsh red leather; and some punky boots in black leather and burnished red and anthracite.
“We wanted the artists to have total freedom to respond to the looks,” Burton enthuses, “creating bold and thought-provoking conversations with their works. I hope that viewers will be as inspired as we have all been by witnessing these creative processes.”
The original artworks will be on temporary exhibit at the Alexander McQueen London flagship on New Bond Street, and a specially created zine with more detailed backstory will also be made available.