Sunday, November 22, 2009

Fashion photography -- as it should be

I've been kind of over fashion magazines lately -- especially Vogue, which I used to love a lot a few years back. But now, the disconnect between the mags and the world had become jarring: fashion has been increasingly treated as aspirational rather than artistic, and I find the former a lot more difficult to stomach -- and so does most everyone who is not an eighteen-year-old millionaire, I would imagine. Anne Leibovitz, who has been responsible for so many of Vogue's photoshoots, is a genius, but despite that I have been dissatisfied with the US Vogue lately.

Until now. Leibovitz has produced a wonderful, terrifyingly grim and yet hilarious fairy tale themed photoshoot, a sort of twisted Hansel and Gretel (not that the original wasn't twisted, but you know what I mean). With Lady Gaga as a witch:

I find this one both charming and funny, as well as the rest of the pictures. I am especially taken with these two:

Yay tree-people!

And fish people (the latter, of course, reminds me of that Klee painting). In any case -- very well done, Vogue. Sure, the clothes are still ridiculously expensive, but I enjoy the playfulness and the creativity that went into these pictures. The composition is genius, and they remind me once again what fashion photography can (and ought to) be -- artistic expression, telling of tales, playful reminders that fashion (and clothes) is not about status or trends or any other foolishness. It's an artistic medium that inspires rather dictates, and elevates rather than demeans.

[This is via Haute Macabre. Check out the rest of the pictures there.]

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