Revered for the artistry and storytelling he brought the fashion world, Alexander McQueen drew inspiration from countless sources – death mask photographs, clock faces, Kubrick films. Quite a few of the British designer’s eclectic influences can be traced back to the many hours he spent in London’s Victoria & Albert Museum, a world-renowned resource for art and design.

To celebrate McQueen’s legacy and connection to the V&A, the Alexander McQueen Research Library was born. Collating the reference books that most inspired his work, the collection includes historical pattern books, bird illustrations and photobooks of dried flowers and Victorian asylums. Read on for a list of works that made a mark on McQueen.


Libro de Geometria, Pratica y Traça by Juan de Alcega (out of print)

Leigh Bowery by Robert Violette

The Clans of the Scottish Highlands by James Logan

A New History of Photography by Michel Frizot

Harms Way: Lust & Madness, Murder & Mayhem : A Book of Photographs by Joel Peter-Witkin

Sam Taylor-Wood by Margo A. Crutchfield

The Grammar of Ornament by Owen Jones

Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

Flora by Nick Knight

Cabinets of Curiosities by Patrick Mauries

Oeillades Ciselées en Branche by Georges Hugnet & Hans Bellmer (out of print)

Art Forms in Nature by Ernst Haeckel

The Birds of America by John James Audubon

(via The Victoria & Albert Museum)

Categories: Artists

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