Block 605: February 15, 2015

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Valentine’s Day is over. Thank goodness…

Date: February 15, 2015

Crane: 605

Days Spent on Project: 726

Location: NW Portland, OR

Person I would have sent it to: Well, since I’m thanking a few people I’ve never met, I’d like to dedicate this one to Alexander M.

I should just use his full name: Alexander McQueen. Lord knows I’ve talked about him enough throughout this project.

Back in the summer of 2013, I was working with the Lincoln Center’s Playwright’s Lab as one of their design collaborators. It wasn’t an experience that ultimately led me to any large epiphanies or any influx of work, but the chance to talk about a play for five days in a room full of directors and actors and one playwright, discussing what a play COULD BE was pretty interesting.

At the end of the week, I was asked what kind of theater I wanted to work on. My response was that I hoped to make theater that was like an Alexander McQueen runway show… not copying his work… but the aesthetic of his shows. There was always a specific point of view; it was meticulously and skillfully crafted; it was challenging; they could be emotional; they left you thinking; you always had an opinion about the work; they had a nod to the past while looking ahead at the now and the future; they could be sexy or trashy or elegant or minimal- it transcended one style- but was always his own; he used design to create a space and then used light and sound to highlight the emotions and stories.

I really do enjoy his work. I think the collections he put out before his suicide in 2010 were always bold and stunning. And I still loo at his work and wonder where the inspiration came from.

For a while, maybe about a year or so, I would watch his runway shows on YouTube repeatedly, trying to soak in all of that experience.

When they did that Savage Beauty retrospective of his work back in 2011, I went to see the show 6 times. It was easy for me, living on the Upper East Side at the time; I could walk over whenever I had nothing to do. I was always floored at the size of the crowds that the show drew in.

You could sense you were looking at genius work, at a genius’s work, as you walked through it. You don’t get the opportunity to see that very often, I realize.

Music I listened to while sewing: Again, with Madonna’s MDNA tour album this morning. I don’t know if she ever would come to Portland, but I should try to see her at some point in my life.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: Another Sunday here in Portland.

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