Vivienne Westwood was described by Alexander McQueen as "the Coco Chanel of our era". With her then-partner, Malcolm McLaren, she is credited with co-creating the look of Punk, fusing bondage clothing, fetish wear, safety pins and tartan, all sold from their World's End (Kings Road) shop.
After their split 'Vivienne Westwood' the fashion house was born: it has had unparalleled success and influence in the fashion world ever since and in selling the image of London abroad. Today her designs are worn by Pharrell Williams, Christina Hendricks and the Duchess of Cornwall. Dame Vivienne's work spans Paris couture, Green Party politics and a series of civil rights and ecological activist causes from Liberty to Cool Earth.
Ian Kelly is an author, biographer and actor. He has written biographies of Giacomo Casanova, Beau Brummell, chef Antonin Carême and actor Samuel Foote. He collaborated with Dame Vivienne Westwood on her recent biography.
Kelly's stage adaptation of his book Mr Foote's Other Leg opens in London this September, directed by Richard Eyre with Simon Russell Beale as Samuel Foote.