'Eclect Dissect' was McQueen`s second collection for Givenchy.
It was shown in Paris Medical School in july 1997.
For this show McQueen`s art director Simon Costin imagined a fictional surgeon and collector who travelled the world collecting exotic objects and women, whom he took apart and reassembled in this laboratory.
The runway show staged the return of these murdered women who come back to haunt the living.
The models embodied their ghosts, dressed in the exotic garments collected by their murderer on his foreign journeys.
Scottish tartan, Spanish lace, kimonos, Burmese necklaces and eastern folk dresses decorated with feathers and stuffed animals merge to outfits with a morbid aura.
The analogy between the designer and the surgeon is obvious.
McQueen acts like a surgeon himself here, dissecting the traditional clothes and reassembling them.
The japanese Obi, for example, becomes a corset and the Kimono becomes a tight skirt.
McQueen`s reassemblage didn`t make the women seem like victims but as vengeful ghosts.
He always wanted to empower women with his fashion and I think he succeeds with this collection.
The mix of cultures is extended beyond fashion; the show also makes references to his own, british, culture (in the 19th century): the dissecting-reference to Jack the Ripper (who also influenced his graduation collection) and the 'women returning from the dead' motif from the Gothic Novel.
Information credit: Book: 'Fashion at the edge: spectacle, modernity and deathliness' by Caroline Evans. Pages 154 - 156.
McQueen is the only designer EVER to mix elements of Scotland, Spain and Asia - and it works! I love how the models act like victorian ladies, the Princess Leah hair and the Burka with the bird-cage on top! McQueen`s fantasy and courage to put traditional items into new contexts and mix cultures & times will be unrivalled for 100 years at least.
What is your favourite thing about this collection?