Vivienne Westwood

and Ian Kelly

4.19 based on 298 ratings & 37 reviews on Goodreads.com
Picador

Publication date: 27.08.2015
ISBN: 9781447254140
Number of pages: 464

Synopsis

Vivienne Westwood is one of the icons of our age; fashion designer, activist, co-creator of punk, global brand and grandmother; a true living legend. Both her name and brand are recognised the world over, whilst at home in the UK she has attained National Treasure status as the nation's favourite fearless female icon.

This is her story. Told for the first time in all its glamour and glory and with her unique voice, unexpected perspective and passionate honesty: 'The living deserve respect. The dead deserve the truth; Ian and I are working together on this and I am excited that this will be my story, the story nobody ever did before.'

For the first and only time, she is both writing and collaborating on a unique personal memoir and authorised biography: partly her own voice, partly through contributions from her vast network of friends, family and associates. Ian Kelly (award-winning biographer of, amongst others, fashion maverick Beau Brummell and the original self-publicist, Giacomo Casanova) brings the insights of a historian and friend of Vivienne to the life and works of one of the major influences of our age in this wonderful, insightful collaboration.

In the media

As a practised, deft biographer, [Ian Kelly]'s already given us flash-lit lives of Beau Brummell and Casanova - and is thus a perfect match for the Enlightenment figure Vivienne Westwood aspires to be. The book is billed "as told to", but one gets the impression it was one long stream-of-consciousness rant, careering off on an uproarious picaresque romp through a wild and often unaccountable life. Holding a legend to account is Kelly's dilemma - and his skill. He accomplishes it by the skin of his buckskin breeches, with a wit and humour of his own
Telegraph
[Vivienne Westwood's] use of historical reference, combined with an ability to shock even the most jaded fashion pundits, ensures her place in fashion history. This autobiography reveals the woman behind the Dame
Irish Times
I consumed the 500-page biography in gulps, cramming it in and then decelerating to wallow in Kelly's sinuous prose.In a world where clothes are designed to become unfashionable almost upon wearing them, Vivienne Westwood reminded me of why I'm so drawn to the industry and shows how fashion, as a wearable expression of art, can change the world for the better
Sartorial Reads