Fashion

RIP: ALEXANDER MCQUEEN

Lisa Tant reflects on the tragic passing of fashion visionary Alexander McQueen

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Photo by Anthea Simms

Alexander McQueen, one of the world’s top fashion innovators, took his life in London today. The 40-year-old Brit committed suicide just a week after his mother passed and weeks before his fall 2011 collection was to be shown in Paris on March 9.

I’m devastated by the loss of such a brilliant, provocative creator. Fashion editors and celebrities adored the cheeky Brit’s often outrageous take on fashion. He could always be relied upon to push the boundaries – consider the massive foot-high boots worn by alienesque models in his most recent collection. Other highlights featured Kate Moss in a hologram opening a show; a manic dancing collection; another modelled after a chess game; and his touching tribute to his friend and mentor, Isabella Blow, who committed suicide three years ago.

Lovingly described as the “pink sheep of the family”, McQueen did a five year stint at Givenchy in 1996 before devoting himself to his own signature line. Trained on London’s famed Savile Row, he was known for precise tailoring that he combined with a love of pattern and spectacular accessories.

Every season, I was on pins and needles until I received the glossy envelope containing the invitation to his Paris show. His loss extinguishes one of the brightest lights on today’s fashion scene.