How We Met: Zandra Rhodes & Andrew Logan

'I was invited to judge Miss India in 1982 – there was no fee, so I asked if I could bring Andrew'
Click to follow
The Independent Online

Andrew Logan, 63, is a sculptor, performance artist, jewellery designer and painter, whose work has been shown at the V&A, the Hayward and the National Portrait Gallery. In 1976, he hosted the Valentine's Ball at which the Sex Pistols first got noticed. He is also the founder of the Alternative Miss World competition. He lives with his partner, Michael, in London Bridge

In the 1970s I was studying as an architect, but became much more interested in fashion and design. While I was at college I was making all my own clothes, so I've always looked quite interesting. My mind's a bit wibbly-wobbly now and I can't quite remember what happened when, but Zandra definitely came to my first one-man show, called Flowers and Plants for All Occasions. It was held at a very small gallery called the New Art Centre on Sloane Street. I filled the gallery with palm trees and a very early record player, some parrots and exotic mirrors hanging from the ceiling. And there was a bright pink horse outside. There's a picture of Zandra and her boyfriend there, sitting on a lightbox. It's a wonderful photo. She was just the same then as she is now.

We got to know each other quite slowly as we were always bumping into each other at parties. Then towards the end of the 1970s, I started to make jewellery for her. She's great to work with because she's so straightforward. I'll say, "I want to do this and this and this," and she'll say, "OK, I like this and this and this," then you just go away and do it. There aren't endless meetings. Leonardo Da Vinci once said: "Don't waste time". Zandra's just like that.

In about 1979 there was a terrible fire at my house and Michael and I were left homeless. Zandra offered us a space in her house in Notting Hill and we went to live there for quite a long time.

I had my studio in the unfinished loft; there was no floor and I had to walk along the joists. But it was there that I first started doing portraits, and the sculpture I did of Zandra in that house is now in the National Portrait Gallery. It was an extraordinary house – Larry Hagman and his wife would come round, and Vidal Sassoon and all sorts of people.

Zandra loves introducing the people in her life to each other and helping them make connections. She's also always been very supportive of me, wearing my jewellery and filling her house with my art.

I think that travelling is a great test of friendship and we travel so well together – we've been all over the place and had great adventures; sometimes we've had to sleep on floors and really rough it but we've never had a cross word. There's too much bickering in the world, between people and countries and religions. It's not for me – and definitely not for me and Zandra.

Zandra Rhodes CBE, 67, is a fashion and textiles designer who came to prominence with her flamboyant designs in the 1960s. She has designed for Diana, Princess of Wales, Freddie Mercury and, last year, for Topshop. She lives above her Fashion and Textile Museum in London

Andrew and I have an uncanny connection. We're blood brothers; we're the same under the skin. I once went to a show of his in Mexico and four nights in a row, we came out of our rooms, ready to go to dinner wearing the same colour outfits!

He's an inspiration to travel with. I was asked to judge the Miss India competition in 1982 and I said, "Is there a fee?" and they said "No," so I said, "Well, I'll come and do it if I can bring my friend," and they agreed and flew Andrew out with me. We went from Hyderabad to Sri Lanka and we turned it into it a sketching tour – we'd start at sunrise and still be sketching at midnight. It was gorgeous.

Andrew is also the most encouraging shopper I know. I've got this huge carved wooden tree in my house, which I bought when I was with him. We saw it and I said, "I love that" and he took a picture of me next to it and said, "It's very you. Get it," And so I did! I've always bought bits and pieces for him that I've thought might work in his sculptures.

He also inspired me to get a sound system in my house, something I'd never had before. He's got one in his place which is two bits – one "planet" suspended from the ceiling contains the box and another contains the speakers. The first thing I played on it was Lou Reed.

I dream of us going travelling again. I introduced him to India, which has been such a huge influence on him. There's a woman I know with a gallery in San Diego, who wants to put on an exhibition of our sketchbooks, side by side.

When I'm away I miss that inspirational rapport that I have with Andrew. Even if we chat on the phone when I'm abroad, it's not really the same as being able to go out and see things together. The moment I'm back in London he's the first person to invite me round for something to eat. He's always flying out to see my shows – he flew specially to San Diego to see my Aida and flew out again to see the Pearl Fishers and the Magic Flute [for which she designed the sets and costumes]. He's a great friend; we always find so much to talk to each other about and find new things to introduce each other to. He's fabulous.

Zandra Rhodes is working with Sony on its new Giga Juke music system (