Beliefs have the Power to Create and the Power to Destroy

Anne Deniau

Love Looks Not With the Eyes
Thirteen Years with Lee Alexander McQueen 
Anne Deniau

Lee Alexander McQueen (1969–2010), whose design combined visionary aesthetics, emotional power, and extraordinary craft, was known for staging provocative shows that were as much performances as venues to display his couture creations. 
Charged with energy, informed by history and culture, and filled with fresh concepts, McQueen’s shows have become legends not only of fashion but also of art. 
Anne Deniau was the only photographer allowed backstage by McQueen for 13 years, beginning in September 1997 and ending with the final show in March 2010. She captured McQueen working with his close circle of collaborators including designer Sarah Burton, milliner Philip Treacy, jewelry designer Shaun Leane, and model Kate Moss to create his meticulously produced spectacles.  Her book offers an inspiring homage, through the art of photography, to the work of a great artist.

Name: Anne Deniau, aka Ann Ray
Occupation: Image Maker, Writer
Fav. city: New York, Berlin, Guethary, and the next one to discover.
Fav. scent: Orange blossom
Fav. book: Hm. “Lettres à un jeune poète”, Rilke. “Fragments d’un discours
amoureux”, Barthes. “Moon Palace”, Paul Auster. “Bonjour Tristesse”, Sagan
“Au sud de la frontière, à l’ouest du soleil” Murakami

Fav. designer: Lee McQueen, Albert Elbaz, Yves Saint-Laurent, Alaïa, Rei
Kawakubo. Philip Treacy for hats. Shaun Leane for jewels.

Fav. color: I once asked this question to a great Japanese Artist, Moriguchi
Kako, he answered this “Can you imagine the suffering of the other colors if I
was responding to this question ?” Maybe black, because black is warm, deep, intense, infinite and soft like velvet.

Fav. drink: Champagne, Mojito, fresh water.
Fav. dish: grilled scallops. Anything with truffles.
Fav. actor/actress: Cate Blanchett, Juliette Binoche, Tilda Swinton, Benicio
Del Toro, Johnny Depp, Sean Penn, Susan Sarandon, Julianne Moore, Catherine
Deneuve, Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Devos, Jean Seberg.

Fav. restaurant: Fanelli Café in NY, Ferdi & “la petite cour” in Paris, Hakkasan in London
 What is your motto: I can fly if asked gently
The last movie you have seen: Moonrise kingdom
Who are your heroes: None. People I admire : Odysseus, maybe. Or Camille Claudel. People who are true to themselves.
When and where you the happiest: When there is some kind of harmony, with
precious friends and beloved ones, in a sheltering environment.  It could happen anywhere... In favorite cities : NY, Berlin, London... Or
in front of the ocean, for hours or days. When we are gathered with friends around art : Like enjoying “Einstein on the beach” in January in Amsterdam,
like in Roma with Sylvie Guillem in february, like in last november with Michael Nyman in Mexico.

When doing nothing with somebody makes you happy anyway. The happiness of a presence. Doing nothing. Just being, together.
What is your present state of mind: Il faut aller au bout de ses rêves, c’est  la seule solution possible. (We must pursue our dreams, that’s the only possible way.) No compromise.
 How would you like to die: With love. Quickly.
The Quality you most admire in a man: Kindness. Honesty. Strength & fragility.
Ability for joy. Empathy. Curiosity.
The Quality you most admire in a woman: Kindness. Honesty. Strength & fragility. Ability for joy. Empathy. Curiosity.
Your most marked characteristic: Extreme, probably. Sincere. Up front.
What is your idea of perfect happiness: Fluidity. Like water, waves. Caress. Curves. Something unfinished, unfinishing.
What natural gift would you most like to possess: Curing illness. Teleportation
What do you consider your greatest achievement: My son.
What's the nicest thing someone's ever done for you: Something driven by true love.
If you had to cook dinner for someone tonight, what would you make: Their favorite dishes, if I can, with very good wines.
If you could rid the world of one thing what would it be: brutality in any form
If you won a million dollars what would you do with it: So many options...
Giving money to my beloved ones so they don’t have to worry. Giving funds to
foundations for Children. Launching a gallery for emerging artists. Creating a
beautiful magazine without ads

If your house was on fire and could only grab 3 things, what would they be: My son is not a thing... So : the fire, my notebooks and one photograph.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be: Impatience. & therefore, being less demanding with myself.
What do you have coming up: Another book, exhibitions, works for Paris Opera,
 new photographic projects / seeing family & friends and meeting new interesting persons : the essence of life
DemandetDestroy: Inspiring, so inspiring.

 a few images, from the McQueen book

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