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Sleepless Beauty: McQueen Round-the-Clock

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Alexander McQueen

Big beast: Alexander McQueen exhibition has broken all records and drawn visitors from all over the globe

For the first time in its history Victoria and Albert Museum will be opening its doors to culture vultures through the night for the final weekend of the Alexander McQueen show described by director Martin Roth as an “event worth getting out of bed for”.

The Victoria and Albert Museum has announced plans to open Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty throughout the night for the final two weekends of its run. It has also become the west London museum’s highest grossing show in the last decade with more than 345,000 paid-for tickets.

“This will be the first time we have opened the V&A around the clock and we certainly think it is an event worth getting out of bed for.”

With one month to go before the show closes and all pre-bookable tickets already sold out, the V&A has released a further 12,000 tickets offering those who have not yet visited a last chance to do so. Night tickets are now available to book from Friday 24 July to 22.00 on Sunday 26 July; and from Friday 31 July until it closes finally on Sunday 2 August at 23.00. The museum has also laid out special in-store promotions and entertainment for the culture vultures. A bar will be open in the Dome with music until 22.00, and refreshments available from 22.00 – 06.30.

Global Appeal

McQueen’s magic has not only wowed visitors from the UK, US and Europe, fans have also poured in from far afield as; Afghanistan, Cambodia, Cayman Islands, East Timor, Ecuador, El Salvador, Kazakhstan, Mauritius, Namibia, Senegal, Suriname and Uzbekistan. Within the UK, people have travelled from Orkney in Scotland, Helston in Cornwall, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands to see it.

Crowd-pleaser: Ever the showman, McQueens catwalk shows were events in themselves and brought visitors to the edge of their seats

Martin Roth, Director of the V&A said: “We knew that Savage Beauty would be very popular, but the response has been even greater than we imagined. It is an extraordinary exhibition and I urge anyone who has not yet visited, wherever they are in the world, to make a trip to the V&A to experience this very special show. It is not going on tour to other venues so our aim is to provide as many people as possible with the opportunity to see it by opening through the night for the last two weekends. This will be the first time we have opened the V&A around the clock and we certainly think it is an event worth getting out of bed for.”

Fashion Genius

The exhibition is the only major retrospective of the work of the visionary fashion designer Lee Alexander McQueen, widely celebrated as one of the most innovative designers of his generation. The first version of Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty was presented at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 2010. The exhibition has been open at the V&A since 14 March, operating for more than 1,000 hours for public opening and private events.

Costume drama: McQueen’s designs were elaborate and intricate but never failed to excite like this headpiece  collaboration with milliner Philip Treacy

The exhibition, which looks at how McQueen combined a profound grasp of tailoring and eclectic range of influences with a relentless pursuit to challenge the boundaries of art and fashion, has attracted a range of high profile visitors. These include Lady Gaga, Benedict Cumberbatch and Sophie Hunter, Kanye West and Kim Kardashian West, Kendal Jenner, Adele, Sam Smith, Alex James, Stella McCartney, Maria Sharapova, RuPaul, Sam and Aaron Taylor Johnson, Richard E Grant, Matt Bellamy, Lorde and Tom Dixon. Prominent guests that attended the opening events included Sarah Burton, Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, David and Victoria Beckham, FKA Twigs, Salma Hayek Pinault, Colin and Livia Firth, HRH Princess Beatrice, Rupert Friend, Aimee Mullins, Eva Herzigova, Katy England and Bobby Gillespie, Daisy Lowe, Natalie Dormer, Jeremy Irons and Sadie Frost.

McQueen in Numbers

2.3m
Visitors to the exhibition website

345,000
Paid-for exhibition tickets

83,000
McQueen Postcards sold

58,000
Sold copies of Alexander McQueen book accompanying exhibition

10,000
New friends of the V&A since show opened

1,250
Metres of McQueen limited edition silk scarves sold

1,000
Hours clocked for public openings and private events

108 tonnes
Catalogues delivered to the museum since exhibition started

87 countries
Where visitors have come from

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, 14 March – 2 August 2015, Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL

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