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Vivienne Westwood

Fashion designer and business woman

Vivienne Westwood

Vivienne Westwood was born in 1941 and moved to London 17 years later. She began designing in 1971 along with her partner Malcolm McLaren when London was at the forefront of cultural trends. In 1984 she launched her own fashion line and was the first designer to be honoured at the Moët & Chandon Fashion Tribute, held in conjunction with the Victoria & Albert Museum, awarded to a leader from the fashion world whose creativity and vision has had a profound influence on lifestyle.

In 2006, Vivienne Westwood was appointed Dame of the British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. In 2007, she was awarded the Outstanding Achievement in Fashion at the British Fashion Awards in London. This was also the year in which she received recognition for her continued hard work: an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Heriot Watt University, an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from Dundee University, a Fellowship at Kings College, London, as well as a distinction from the Royal College of Art for her services to fashion.

Vivienne has worked tirelessly for social and environmental causes. Her proudest moment was being named a Trustee of Liberty and, more recently, Patron of Reprieve. She actively supports the environmental charity, Cool Earth, in their efforts to save the rainforest and stop climate change, as well as working with the UN Environmental Protection Agency to re-establish the fragmented forests of Europe. Vivienne has also joined forces with the UN’s ITC to create the Ethical Africa project - an ongoing venture to provide people in Africa with the resources to be able to work and build a trade.

Vivienne has written her ideas in a Manifesto called “Active Resistance to Propaganda”. The AR Manifesto evolved through her fashion shows which she uses as a platform for her cultural and environmental concerns. It is a call to all to become more cultivated and in doing so gain the strength and wisdom needed to live life well now and to save the planet for the future.

The AR Manifesto and more information on Vivienne’s concerns and campaigns can be found on her website www.activeresistance.co.uk/getalife.

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