Legendary designer and goth fashion icon Alexander McQueen will live forever in his contributions to the world of design. But he might also live forever in another way: a London-based fashion student is now growing skin from his DNA in order to use the leather for a line of jackets, handbags, and backpacks she plans on producing.
Tina Gorjanc harvested her DNA samples from the locks of McQueen's hair that he had included in his incredible “Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims” 1992 graduate collection.
Although the material may seem rather spookily sourced, Gorjanc assured Dezeen Magazine that her project wasn't purely done for shock value and is intended to make a statement about the ownership of others' medical data: “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 ... 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.”
For now, Gorjanc's jacket prototypes use pig skin samples which are embellished with freckles to make them more human-seeming. Also designed into the jackets is a koi fish motif meant to match McQueen's arm tattoo. On the other arm is a fascimile of McQueen's iconic ink: text that reads “Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind”—a quote from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
While McQueen was no stranger to the whimsy of dystopian nightmares, it's unclear if he would have been happy about his own skin being used in someone else's line of products.