Goodbye to Vivienne Westwood, the British fashion designer who passed away last 29 December in London at the age of 81.
She had made one of her last appearances in Florence, 14 months ago, when she received the last award of her long and amazing career, at the Fortezza da Basso on 26 October 2021, as part of the XIII Florence Biennale - International Exhibition of Contemporary Art and Design. Presenting her with the 'Leonardo da Vinci' Lifetime Achievement Award (for design) was the General Director of the event, Jacopo Celona, during a particularly crowded ceremony marked by a deluge of flashes and applause.
This is the motivation for the award: "in recognition of a revolutionary creative production that has marked the history of fashion design over the last fifty years, changing and expanding the concept of femininity, and for having conceived and promoted innovative campaigns with the aim of protecting life on our Mother Earth".
Her manifesto for the world, which she read out in English and Italian and which she entitled 'Letter-SOS to save the planet', will also remain in the memory of those present at the ceremony.
This is the full text: "The word World Economy means 'stewardship of the HOME'. Mother Earth is our home, so on a global scale, economy equals sustainability. We do not have it. We have no future. Our financial system is based on perpetual wars, trade wars and competition; it is the cause of climate change. Wars are fought over territory and cheap labour. The real economy is based on the value of land. "The earth belongs to no one. We are its custodians. A contribution should be made to the public purse for the use of the land, a huge untapped revenue. NO TAXES! All other man-to-man transactions. Cooperation not competition. Fair distribution of wealth. I have a plan to save the world that can work because I have analysed the problem and I have the solution. My team, Climate Revolution, has started the campaign for an Earth-based economy through re-wilding; we aim to create wilderness corridors. We are asking for the cooperation of the government".