REMEMBERING PETER LINDBERGH
Very sad to hear the news of the passing of the great fashion photographer Peter Lindbergh today at the age of 74.
I feel very fortunate that I had the opportunity to work with him while i was an editor’s assistant at Vogue Italia, He was kind, inspiring, never pretentious and in general one of the few productions I was excited to be a part of. After the shoots, I would receive a box with the visuals which I’d send to the Milan office and usually his editorials were between 10 and 20 pages long. Opening the boxes, was like opening a gift, beautiful magic, un -retouched, raw, black and white cinematic super model photos in all their natural glory ( In more technical terms described as Mono chromatic realism).
Many people in fashion say that he is responsible for defining that golden era of the supermodel in the 90’s.. For a January 1990 cover of British Vogue, he assembled Evangelista, Turlington, Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, and Tatjana Patitz in downtown New York. «It was a new generation, and that new generation came with a new interpretation of women,» he explains. «It was the first picture of them together as a group.». Oh and Vogue Cover apparently inspired George Michael’s Freedom 90' video, directed by David Fincher.
Born in 1944, Lindbergh started photographing his brother’s children, «There was something incredible there, it was the innocence – children don’t put anything between themselves and the camera. But when you photograph adults, they’re always concerned about how they look. I try to catch the truth, to strip away what they’re trying to put between themselves and the camera.”
He felt uninspired the way models were photographed in the ’80s. ‘
I wanted to move away from the rather formal, quite perfectly styled woman who was very artificial. I was more concerned about a more outspoken, adventurous woman in control of her life and not too concerned about her social status or emancipated by masculine protection. My ideal was always the young women I met in art school, very independent and who could speak for themselves. The supermodels represented this change.’
His photos always focused on the natural beauty of his subject, clothes as props were never a central element for his shoots. “I don’t even ask what outfit I’m shooting,”
Lindbergh was a critic of today’s selfie culture, one in which phone apps are offering the general public the means to quickly alter their appearance to adhere to societal standards of beauty.
"AT A TIME WHEN PHOTOSHOP MAKES IT POSSIBLE TO WIPE OUT YEARS AND SMOOTH FACES, THE IDEA OF SHOWING THE TRUTH OF TIME PASSING OVER EVERYONE SEEMS TO US EVER MORE SCANDALOUS."
He was often asked “ WHAT IS BEAUTY FOR LINDBERGH TODAY? “ and He’d usually respond: “ It is everything that gives you the courage to be yourself, at all times, nothing more.”
Rest in Peace Peter Lindbergh