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Dame Vivienne Westwood ‘Will Live On Through Her Art’, Tributes Pour in for the Fashion Maverick

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Legendary fashion designer and activist, Dame Vivienne Westwood has passed away at the age of 81. The designer who was instrumental in shaping the punk movement in the 70s in London, has left the world leaving behind a legacy of her distinct body of work.

Vivienne passed away peacefully surrounded by her family, in Clapham, South London. The brand took to Instagram and announced her passing with a heartfelt message, which read:Vivienne continued to do the things she loved, up until the last moment, designing, working on her art, writing her book, and changing the world for the better. She led an amazing life. Her innovation and impact over the last 60 years has been immense and will continue into the future.”

Known for her work around environmental issues like climate change, Vivienne used the runway as a platform to speak her mind through her avant-garde designs. Vivienne who considered herself a Taoist, the post also mentioned a quote from her as well. It read: “Tao spiritual system. There was never more need for the Tao today. Tao gives you a feeling that you belong to the cosmos and gives purpose to your life; it gives you such a sense of identity and strength to know you’re living the life you can live and therefore ought to be living: make full use of your character and full use of your life on earth.”

The post continued with the words: The world needs people like Vivienne to make a change for the better. A changemaker, a disruptor in the world of fashion, Vivienne was a powerful force to reckon with.

As per reports,Westwood’s husband and creative partner, Andreas Kronthaler, in a statement he sent out, read: “I will continue with Vivienne in my heart. We have been working until the end and she has given me plenty of things to get on with. Thank you darling.”

Her demise has left the film, music and fashion fraternity heartbroken. Paying tribute to the fashion maverick, whose work will be remembered and cherished forever, this is what they all had to say:

Nachiket Barve

National award winning fashion and costume designer Nachiket Barve says, “Design is a point of view. Dame Westwood had a specific and defined vision and was of the first rebels and activist designers. She chose to go against the establishment and the grain and carved the identity of her eponymous brand.”

Ruchi Sally

For Ruchi Sally, managing director, Melissa India, Vivienne Westwood was an inspiration to her and like Westwood she too sees the world differently. She says, “When we launched the Melissa x Vivienne Westwood collection exclusively in India, I remember being so proud and it was one of the most memorable & prestigious launches for me. She has inspired me not only with her liberating designs but also with the thoughts behind those designs. I cannot think of the time she has bent to the rules of the industry and that’s what inspires me. When we talk about Vivienne Westwood, we talk about art, design and emotion. She is a true icon who showed the way for people like me to believe in who they are. I still remember reading about her courageous moves like opening a store named ‘SEX’ written in giant pink letters. I can for sure say that there is no one to match her spirit, originality and DIY attitude to just try making stuff without the fear of everything to be perfect. She was different and there would be no other Vivienne Westwood. I will always keep taking inspiration from her legendary life she has lived with her own rules.

Jebin Johny

Kerala-based fashion designer Jebin Johny was inspired by the fashion maverick for her unapologetic style. He says, “Her punk fashion is something that influenced me during my Btech fashion tech days. I wanted to portray a rebellious attitude through my dressing to people and hence would dress up inspired by Westwood’s punk style. I also admire people who are rebellious and portray the same through art or clothing. She was an unapologetic rebellious activist and artist. Westwood once shaved her red hair to raise awareness for climate change. I love her. She used to work as a teacher. I also started my career as a lecturer. It’s one of the many reasons that attracted me to the legend. She was vocal about fast fashion and a pioneer of “buy less”. She was a hope for the future generation.

Anaita Shroff Adajania

Celebrity stylist and costume designer Anaita Shroff Adajania took to Instagram and posted a message in memory of Vivienne Westwood. She wrote: RIP @viviennewestwood. Thanks for breaking the rules, only to reinvent the ones you created again and again. (sic)

Victoria Beckham

Saddened by the demise of such a legend, fashion designer Victoria Beckham shared a heartfelt message on her Instagram stories. She wrote: I am so sad to learn of the passing of legendary designer and activist Dame Vivienne Westwood. My thoughts are with her family at this incredibly sad time. VB (sic)

Kim Cattrall

Actor Kim Cattrall, known for her iconic role as Samantha in Sex and the City, took to instagram and shared her experience of working with Vivienne. She wrote: A true genius who never lost her northern grit. Short story – An LA stylist had sent me 3 dresses from various designers for the London/Berlin/NY premiers of a film. The clothes arrived at my London hotel unclean, were unflattering and in need of alteration. I was crest fallen until a mutual friend took me immediately to see @viviennewestwood atelier and Vivienne made me a new dress in 3 days and 2 others beside for each of the upcoming openings. I’ve never forgotten her generosity and kindness in making that happen and saving the day. RIP Vivienne. You are a legend. (sic)

Yoko Ono

Artist Yoko Ono took to Twitter, and posted a tweet in memory of Vivienne Westwood. The tweet said: Rest in peace, Vivienne. What a woman – so young at heart, motivated, beautiful and elegant. Our love and deepest condolences go out to Andreas, Ben, Joseph and families. Love, yoko (sic)

Bryan Adams

Musician Bryan Adams shared his thoughts on Twitter, he wrote: Rest in peace, Vivienne. What a woman – so young at heart, motivated, beautiful and elegant. Our love and deepest condolences go out to Andreas, Ben, Joseph and families. Love, yoko. (sic)

Marlee Matlin

Academy award winning actress, Marlee Matlin, took to Twitter and shared an image of her wearing a sustainable ensemble she wore at the Academy Awards in 2021 designed by Vivienne. She wrote: How sad I was to find out about the passing of #VivienneWestwood. Such a groundbreaking force in the fashion world. And she designed this sustainable dress I wore at @TheAcademy Awards in 2021; I never felt more beautiful. RIP, dear Vivienne. (sic)

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