QUANT The story of an icon: Mary Quant on DVD
OPTIONAL SUBTITLES. 1 disc. Documentary. Colour. Year: 2021.
Running time approx 87 mins.
Featuring contributions from: Vivienne Westwood, Kate Moss, Dave Davies,
Charlotte Tilbury, Edward Enniful, Jasper Conran, Pete Townshend and Zandra Rhodes
as well as Mary’s family and peers.
Directed by: Sadie Frost.
We were sad to hear the news of the passing away of Dame Barbara Mary Quant. A ground-breaking British designer, she was influential in 1960s youth fashion and her legacy continues in the design industry today. Sadie Frost said she was “honoured” to direct QUANT, a documentary about Dame Mary’s “astonishing life” in 2021. “The more I researched and delved into her life I realised the vast impact she had on fashion, popular culture, history and women’s rights,” Frost said. “I really felt like I knew and loved her. Rest in peace, Mary.”
QUANT is a vibrant documentary celebrating the incredible life of one of the most influential designers of the 20th Century, entrepreneur Dame Mary Quant. The film explores her importance as a female business pioneer and her impact on fashion and branding. Mary Quant met Alexander Plunket Greene at Goldsmiths College in the late 1950s. Later becoming her husband, he helped her to open a boutique in the Kings Road, Chelsea. There she sold the clothes she made to young working women who, in those newly emancipated times, had jobs, pay cheques, the pill and a taste of freedom. Quant gave them flat shoes to run for the bus and dance in, PVC macs, colourful tights and the mini-skirt. She wore her own clothes with her trademark Vidal Sassoon bob and thick black eyeliner.
Her story is told through footage and stills from the 50s to the 90s, overdubbed with taped interviews. These are combined with interviews with friends and contemporaries and short sequences where she is played by Camilla Rutherford. The film follows her life from childhood to her 90th birthday, depicting gloomy postwar Britain, coffee bar culture and youth rebellion. Her career took her to Europe, America, Australia and Japan, with branding, cosmetics, footwear and even Quant wine. The Quant empire expansion from a single shop – which was shut when the clothes ran out so she could make more – is not just the story of one designer but the story of the modern woman. It follows her career from the 60s through 70s flower power to Punk and Vivienne Westwood, ending with the V&A retrospective in 2020, during which Mary celebrated her 90th birthday.
“Fashion is not frivolous. It is a part of being alive today.” Mary Quant
£15 with free UK Postage.