Review of Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, located at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

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About the Exhibition

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, located in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Exhibition Hall, is free with admission
Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen- View of Platos Atlantis

A few days ago,  Sabina who is an artist friend of mine and I decided to go the Metropolitan Museum of Art. We had not been in a while and so thought it would be a nice way to spend an afternoon.  She kept talking about the Alexander McQueen exhibit and how she really wanted to go see it.

“What is it all about?” I asked her, admitting through my question that I knew nothing about fashion, the designer, or the fashion world as a whole.

“It’s a fashion exhibition,” she answered excitedly. “Costume designs, and gowns and dresses.”

“Oh,” I said, and with that I hoped that somehow we would get sidetracked and forget all about it.  What could be more boring than browsing through glass windows at dresses and shoes, I thought.  Couldn’t Sabina just go down to Soho and window shop for a new dress without me?

And so I spent the most of the afternoon trying to avoid the floor where the exhibit was being shown.  So as we walked through the many galleries of Rembrandts, and Van Goghs, and Monets, I was perfectly happy.

Then, we walked onto the floor where the McQueen exhibit was being shown.  To my ultimate relief and her dismay, the line was extremely long.  “Let’s come back,” I said, “The line and the wait will be too long. It might take an hour to get in there.” Yes, I felt guilty, but what can I say, the line and the wait was very long.

Thankfully, she agreed. So we walked around the museum some more and I was growing very hopeful that she was ready to go home now.

“Let’s go back and try the McQueen exhibit one more time,” she blurted unexpectedly.

“Okay,” I answered. “One more time.”

We went back to the exhibit one more time and to my utter dismay (and almost horror) the line this time was very short.  “Oh good, we can go in now,” she said.

“Great,” I answered, under my breath and partially rolling my eyes. Did I really have to go in there?

Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen, Romantic Mind at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

But from the moment I entered the first room, I felt carried away. I felt like I had stepped into another universe, another dimension. I felt like I was a time traveler in a science fiction movie. But this no movie. I was in it and it was real.

The genius and the passion of this man’s work was evident in every detail.

The entire exhibition from start to finish was totally awe-inspiring. The Metropolitan

Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen- Cabinet of Curiosities

Museum of Art had outdone themselves this time, I thought.  This exhibit was profound in the way that it captured an almost alien atmosphere. The labyrinth of rooms are set up in a maze and you walk through one dimension to the next, from castles and dungeons to cabinets of curiosities.

In fact, the Cabinet of Curiosities was my favorite room. It was splendid. I felt like a kid at Halloween as my eyes went from one visual treat to the next.

I am a landscape painter, a very visual person.  And this exhibit is, I think, one of Metropolitan’s best.  I still have to admit that I don’t much about fashion. But this exhibit made me curious and want to know more, to learn more about this Alexander McQueen and his work.

I highly recommend this exhibit. If you are in the New York City area, you should plan a special trip to the Met just to see this. If you are not close enough to visit, I have included links to the Met’s website.  Take some time to look at the videos and read the blog. You won’t be disappointed.

So I’m very glad that Sabina was with me that day when I went to the Met. If she had not been with me, I probably would have missed one of the most interesting and profound exhibits of the decade.

Sabina, what would I do without you?

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