The nuances of Sarah Burton's interpretation of the Alexander McQueen aesthetic are so subtle, that perhaps only a Smart Sensuality woman sees the trend. Both Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel and Sarah Burton's collection for McQueen paid homage to women of the sea in Paris yesterday. (Chanel coming shortly).
Both collections are astoundingly beautiful, but Burton's is more psychological. Style.com writer Tim Blanks caught the difference, too. 'Lagerfeld's models were nymphs; Sarah Burton's were goddesses,' writes Blanks.
Bingo -- a man after my own heart and mind. Who said men can't dig deeply into womanly concepts like the difference between nymphs and goddesses!
The answer is power. Not only are the Alexander McQueen women more powerful -- goddesses rather than nymphs -- they are shedding their Lee McQueen ambivalence about female power and its impact on the lives of men. Still bound with fetish details and an inherent female eroticism, the Sarah Burton women are lighter, even romantic at moments and more human than animal. McQueen's women hovered more obviously between both worlds -- torn creatures in the mind of the man who invented them.
Very psychological, I know. What's crystal clear to me is challenging to explain, but I will attempt do so in a long piece soon . . . the post that has drifted in my mind for months since McQueen's death and his show at the Met.
Sarah Burton is 'hot-wired into the core of McQueen' writes Blanks, without the need to disrupt the beauty of the vision. The two spirits are indeed intertwined, but it is Burton who will unleash McQueen's womanly aesthetic fearlessly.
There is no designer more relevant to the concept of 21st century Phoenix Rising than the Burton/McQueen duo vision. It is Burton who will make me not afraid of the undercurrent that almost always pervaded a McQueen collection -- the desire to drive a spear into the heart of unbearable beauty and sensuality. That is the story of women's lives 'from fashion to flogging', a history that I am personally committed to rewriting in the 21st century. Anne