Vivienne Westwood trading in fashion for the fight against climate change, well, sort of, with her latest initiative, Save the Arctic.
“I have decided not to expand any more. In fact I want to do the opposite,” she told the Observer on Saturday. “I am now more interested in quality rather than quantity.” The legendary British designer, who is launching a celebrity-led campaign, backed by the likes of actor George Clooney, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin, director Terry Gilliam, and model Georgia May Jagger, to promote Greenpeace’s “Save the Arctic” initiative, said she wanted to focus on preserving and improving what her label already has, rather than capitalize on her recent success in China and the United States.
Westwood’s latest campaign, shot by award-winning photographer Andy Gotts, exemplifies her shifting priorities. “The status quo will kill us,” she said. “People don’t realize how quickly we are marching towards a possible mass extinction. Once the global temperature goes up beyond two degrees, you can’t stop it. Current predictions are that we will see a rise of more like 4 degrees Celsius or 6°C, which would mean that everything below Paris would become uninhabitable.”
Why Hollywood? “Celebrities are often the key to getting a message across,” Westwood explained. “Public opinion is very responsive to celebrity. The first thing I tend to do is ask them for a small amount of money, something that means nothing to them. Then they feel involved, rather than as if they are just doing me a favor.”
Westwood’s “Save the Arctic” T-shirt is available for purchase online at www.viviennewestwood.co.uk.