Fashion student simulates couture collection made from Alexander McQueen's cloned skin

Alexander McQueen's first collection after graduating from Central Saint Martins was Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims which included locks of his hair; for her own grad project, called "Pure Human," Central Saint Martins student Tina Gorjanc created a line of clothes and accessories that asks the audience to imagine that it was made from pelts cloned from DNA retrieved from McQueen's hair strands.

Gorjanc's piece is meant to stimulate debate about the ownership and patenting of human genes (accordingly, she herself has filed a patent for the process). She appears to hope to make actual McQueen-hide garments: she's contracted with a lab to try to culture the skin and secured permission from the owner of one of the McQueen garments to use the hair follicle for seeding it.

Pure Human's garments were made from offcuts of pigskin, altered with painted-on freckles, etc, to seem more human; a jacket in the collection has painted-on tattoos to match McQueen's own tattoos.

"The Pure Human project was designed as a critical design project that aims to address shortcomings concerning the protection of biological information and move the debate forward using current legal structures," Gorjanc said.

"If a student like me was able to patent a material extracted from Alexander McQueen's biological information as there was no legislation to stop me, we can only imagine what big corporations with bigger funding are going to be capable of doing in the future."

Pure Human
[Tina Gorjanc]

Alexander McQueen's DNA turned into human leather goods by Tina Gorjanc

(Photos: TomMannion, VicPhilips (Single Malt Teapot), Sanne Visser)

(via Kottke)