You have to go faster than the system

Vivienne Westwood
You have to go faster than the system
Vivienne Westwood: "You have to go faster than the system."
Image credit: Mattia PasseriCC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons; cliqmo_CC BY-NC-SA 2.0, via Flickr

This week, our leadership quote of the week comes from Vivienne Westwood, the fashion icon, to celebrate her lifetime achievement in fashion design.

Vivienne Westwood (1941-2022) was a British fashion designer, businesswoman and activist. She grew up in the UK and became a primary school teacher by profession before moving to the world of fashion design. In cooperation with Malcolm McLaren, the future manager of the band Sex Pistols, Westwood later pursued a career in fashion. Her designs were known for taking inspiration from classical sources, such as paintings, and incorporating traditional British dresses into modern clothing lines. She is widely regarded as one of the architects of the punk fashion phenomenon and for bringing punk into the mainstream. Westwood was a firm believer that the most unpopular ideas can have the biggest possible effects on the world. 

Throughout her lifetime, Westwood was an avid campaigner for several high-profile causes and used her later clothing lines to promote the political causes dear to her. In 2005 she partnered with Liberty, a civil rights group, designing T-shirts the sale of which contributed to the funding of the causes pursued by the organisation. Westwood published a manifesto, Active Resistance to Propaganda, which sought to shed light on the human condition and climate change. She also campaigned for nuclear disarmament and continued her efforts to raise awareness about the effects of climate change in her later life. 

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