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Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (Metropolitan Museum of Art) Hardcover – May 31, 2011

4.9 out of 5 stars 277 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“McQueen’s brilliance is celebrated in this sumptuous tome that accompanies the Costume Institute’s spring retrospective. The hologram cover makes it a collector’s item.”—Harper’s Bazaar (Harpers Bazaar 2011-05-01)

“….the definitive reference of Lee Alexander McQueen.”—Dean Mayo Davies, I-D Magazine
(Dean Mayo Davies I-D Magazine 2011-05-01)

“Many books will come dedicated to his genius, but Savage Beauty will remain a beacon.”—Janice Breen Burns, Sydney Morning Herald
(Janice Breen Burns Sydney Morning Herald 2011-06-01)

“This book … helps illuminate McQueen's artistic process. Recommended for readers with an interest in contemporary fashion.” —Library Journal
(Library Journal)

“Excellent catalogue” —The Huffington Post
(The Huffington Post)

“For those still wanting to view McQueen's fashion creations, the book shines on.” —Lonny Magazine
(Lonny Magazine)

“ The catalog—with its gorgeous images places alongside provocative, incisive, and often puzzling conversational quotes from the designer himself—makes for an interesting way to get a peek at the show for those of us who won’t be lucky enough to make it to New York this summer.”—Creative Loafing
(Creative Loafing)

"[T]his book itself is a showstopper."—C. Donaldson, Choice
(C. Donaldson Choice)

“An authoritative and moving insight into the legacy of the British designer.”—Carola Long, The Financial Times (Christmas Books)
(Carola Long The Financial Times (Christmas Books) 2011-12-26)

Winner of the Awards for Excellence in 2011, as given by the Association of Art Museum
(2011 Award for Excellence Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) 2012-06-06)

Finalist for the 2011 ForeWord Book of the Year Award in the Art category
(Book of the Year Finalist ForeWord Magazine 2012-06-06)

About the Author

Andrew Bolton is Curator at The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Susannah Frankel is fashion editor of The Independent newspaper. Tim Blanks is contributing editor of Style.com.
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Product Details

  • Series: Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Metropolitan Museum of Art; First Edition, Later Printing edition (May 31, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300169787
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300169782
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 10 x 13.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (277 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,980 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a book that you can spend hours looking at. The book is beautifully designed with a lenticular cover, moth print end papers, and huge color photos of McQueen's work. It's also a lot bigger and heavier than I expected considering the very reasonable price. The text is informative, and the pictures are sharp and clear so that you can really see the workmanship and details that went into the clothes.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
... BUY THIS BOOK! This book serves as a wonderful compendium of McQueen's work. The collections noted range from "Jack the ripper stalks his victims" through "Angels and Demons". If I were to nit-pick: A - some of the photos could have benefited from better lighting and B - there needed to be more examples from his tenure at Givenchy. Not all of his collections are on display at the Met exhibit and so in this book, not all of his collections are used (Neptune, Pantheon Ad Lectum, etc.). I have not finished reading the passages in the forward, nor the interview with Sara Burton, but this book is more of a visual feast than a good read. The size is comparable to the price and the quality of the book is excellent. I'm still waiting for a giant 1,000 page book on his entire career, but in the mean time, this catalog will suffice nicely!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Remember that first McQueen book that came out, the horrible one, that all of us McQueen fans wasted our money on? This book is the opposite. Its what I was expecting and then some. Its a high quality testament to his legacy, its done beautifully and at 27$ its a steal, you must buy this book. the cover of the book is a hologram of mcqueens face which morphs into that skeleton you see on picture. Its amazing. THANK YOU book gods!!!!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an INCREDIBLE book. I love the transforming cover! Based on the upcoming exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the book includes statuesque models painted white like mannequins adorned in Mcqeen's designs. Many of them are headless (obviously done in post production), some are faceless (also post production) - I think this anonymity adds to the power of his works. I have to say, I was delighted I had ordered my copy in advance when I found out the newly wed Duchess Kate Middleton had decided to have her dress designed by Alexander McQueen's house!!! Between the upcoming opening and how stunning Kate's dress was this book is sure to be a sell out!!!!
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Format: Hardcover
Alexander McQueen (17 March 1969 - 11 February 2010) was an icon in the fashion industry. He is currently the subject of a spectacular exhibition of his works at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and this book serves as a catalogue for that exhibition. From the lenticular cover by Gary James McQueen ('Lenticular printing is a technology in which a lenticular lens is used to produce images with an illusion of depth, or the ability to change or move as the image is viewed from different angles') to the layout or deign of the book itself to the extraordinary photography (by Sølve Sundsbø) this book is an art piece by itself.

McQueen drew notice with his fashions that made femininity collide with masculinity, gowns and dresses that created a continuing dichotomy between life and death, lightness and darkness, predator and prey, man and machine. His uses of fabric and elements not usually considered wearable resulted in very bizarre and at the same time hauntingly beautiful creations that, placed on mannequins, could be considered sculptures. And that is how the exhibition and the catalogue are constructed. 'The Romantic Mind' shows soft fashion lines against a concrete backdrop, 'The Romantic Gothic' recalls a term McQueen used for his designs - 'the Edgar Allen Poe of fashion', 'Romantic Nationalism' is a display of the Scottish versus the British mindset transformed into clothing, and the Objects gallery reveals strange objects of many types that explain how he viewed the world.

There is a fine Preface written by Andrew Bolton who curated the exhibition, an Introduction by Susannah Frankel, an interview by Tim Banks with the now almost equally famous Sarah Burton (designer of Kate's Middleton's Royal wedding gown).
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book in preparation for the exhibit at The Met, opening this month. I am sooo pleased with the beautiful photographs and lengthy introduction in the beginning/interview with Sarah Burton at the end. This weighty catalog is insight into a great mind, and a great addition to any fashionista's library.
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Format: Hardcover
I went to the exhibit that accompanies this book at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. It was a magnificent exhibit that showcased McQueen's skill as a fashion designer and master tailor. The clothes and accesories in the exhibit are beautifully featured in this stunningly bound catalogue. Photographs do not do McQueen's vision justice, you'll need the exhibit for that. However, if you cannot make it to the show, do pick up this book. If you are interested in fashion, art, and history, look no further. Its such a shame that the world lost such a unique individual. No one will ever take his place or be able to replicate what he did. Kudos to the Met and Anna Wintour for acknowledging the work of this amazing visionary with a superb exhibit and companion book. Highly recommended.
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