Lady Gaga buys Alexander McQueen gown for record price
Lady Gaga is understood to pay record price for a gown by her late friend Alexander McQueen.
Lady Gaga have set a new high for a McQueen, bidding £85,250 ($136,400) in a sale which saw her facing rival bids from institutions and couture collectors from around the world.
She was among bidders, from 21 countries, who paid almost half a million pounds for items from the personal collection of Daphne Guinness which was sold at Christie’s.
The lots went for four times the original estimate and the record price was for an ivory silk tulle empire line gown, entitled The Girl Who Lived In The Tree.
Another McQueen – a metallic silver mini-dress dating from 2008, the year before he committed suicide – also beat the previous record, fetching £79,250 ($126,800).
Daphne Guinness was auctioning items from her personal collection to raise funds for the Isabella Blow Foundation, which she set up in memory of her friend to support emerging fashion talent.
The auction’s purpose was to launch and raise funds whilst supporting new and emerging talent in the sphere where art and fashion meet – a realm championed by Daphne Guinness.
With the help of Christie’s specialists, Daphne Guinness selected pieces to be auctioned from her personal wardrobe which embody her personal style, most of which were acquired by Daphne directly from the designers themselves.
Exceptional designs by the likes of McQueen, Chanel, Balenciaga, Gareth Pugh, Christopher Kane, Lanvin, Lacroix, Prada, Gucci, Alaia and others featured in the sale.
Fashionista Isabella Blow killed herself in 2007 by swallowing a bottle of weed killer, and her own extensive wardrobe – sold to settle debts on her estate – was bought in its entirety by Daphne Guinness to keep it intact.
Lady Gaga has spoken of her admiration for Daphne Guinness and Isabella Blow in the past.
She said in one interview: “Isabella and Daphne are two exceptional human beings, women, icons.
“Daphne, like Isabella, is a huge source of inspiration for me. I cherish them both. It is as if we are all cut from the same cloth.”
The top lot of the sale was a photograph of Daphne Guinness taken by Mario Testino for a 2008 British edition of Vogue magazine, which was sold for £133,250 ($213,200).
Avant-garde and quintessentially quirky British designer Alexander McQueen was found dead in his Mayfair apartment in February 2010, days before London Fashion Week.
His death shocked the fashion industry and he left a legacy behind him.
Daphne Guinness said: “This cause is close to my heart. I am genuinely touched by the response it has generated, and truly excited for the future of the Isabella Blow Foundation.
“I’m overwhelmed by how many bidders took part this evening and I’m particularly moved by Lady Gaga’s support for the foundation. I like her very much, and it’s lovely to see the nascent beginnings of something that may help other people.”
Christie’s confirmed that Lady Gaga was a bidder but was unable to provide further details of the items she purchased, but judging from Alexander McQueen’s stunning range of gowns, she left the auction with a one-of-a kind piece.
The whole collection went for £467,800 ($748,500), including buyer’s premium.
Other items on sale came from designers such as Chanel, Gareth Pugh, Lacroix, Prada and Gucci.
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