The many lives of Annie Lennox have seen her win an Oscar, raise money and awareness for HIV and AIDS-related causes and record 13 albumsall as she powered through live performances in ensembles that occasionally out-glammed David Bowie.
Now, the V&A is preparing to explore the creativity and inspiration behind Lennoxs stage career through an exhibition. The House of Annie Lennox will pull dozens of costumes and stage ephemera out of Lennoxs archive and onto the museum floor.
Working with Annie Lennox was a pleasure, curator Victoria Broackes said. She has lent personal objects to us... and has thrown herself wholeheartedly into every aspect of the production.
Expect to see the sequinned evening gown Lennox wore in her Little Bird video and the Union Jack suit she wore to the 1999 Brit Awards alongside handwritten song lyrics and Grammys. Add portraits of Lennox taken by the likes of Paolo Roversi, Pamela Hanson and Satoshi Saikusa, and the result is an ode to a British legend.
The display accompanies the museums main autumn exhibition, Postmodernism: Style and Subversion 1970-1990, and Broackes views the artefacts of Lennoxs stage persona as natural companions to some of the other motifs explored in the main show.
She played with themes of androgyny and gender. What is postmodern about Lennox is not just her style, but also her playful manipulation of expectations about celebrity, Broackes said.
Rather like Grace Jones, Boy George, and other performers whose music and style are featured in the Postmodernism exhibition, she departed from normative ideas about gender and became all the more charismatic in doing so.
The House of Annie Lennox opens in the V&A Theatre & Performance Galleries from 15 Se