[by Tanja] The Peter Lindbergh: A Different Vision on Fashion Photography exhibition at the Kunsthal Rotterdam offers a robust survey of the famous photographer’s opus.
The influence of Peter Lindbergh on how we see fashion today cannot be understated. Of course, when people think of Lindbergh, the original supermodels come to mind. Long before the current generation of Snapchat-savvy models, his iconic shot of Linda, Tatjana and Christy (first names only will do) frolicking around in their white crisp shirts created the original squad goals. Up until now Lindbergh only has segments of his work included in galleries, museum exhibitions and permanent collections around the world. This exhibit at Kunsthal Rotterdam offers a glimpse of the man behind the camera for the very first time.
Meeting Peter Lindbergh, again
I was truly excited to attend the press conference in Kunsthal Rotterdam. For me personally, Peter Lindbergh represents a phase in my life when I was still working as a fulltime model. Back in the 80’s and 90’s, that was. Never at his level – malheuresement – but still the thought that Peter himself would participate this opening as well as a group of his Supers made me reminisce …
I remember that one time during shoots in Paris, I was invited to his studio for a casting. After a three-hour wait (because of the huge lline-up of girls) it was finally my turn to go see The Photographer. I was exhausted of waiting and he must have been in the same state, but still took time to speak to me with sincere interest. And although I didn’t get the job, I left the studio without the feeling of rejection.
It says everything about the way Peter Lindbergh worked and still works. He is very loyal to his muses. They matured together and he loves to see what they became, he explains to us at the conference. Lindbergh transformed his women into heroines of their time, models who became performers, personalities who became supermodels. To be known only by their first names. This change was seen as a politically and socially oriented kind of beauty. Modelling suddenly became something much more than fashion alone. More than a matter of being blonde or not blonde, fat or thin, sporty or intellectual. Lindbergh cherishes his beauties who appeal to both men and women. He refuses to standarize criteria of perfection.
The exhibition, photos and more at Kunsthal Rotterdam
“When he discovered the supermodels, they were not prettier than others. They were just dífferent and had unique personalities. Models today are not only beautiful but also social media changed the business, I think. Clients often book girls according to their number of followers, so this is very different compared to the way Peter works.“
Thierry-Maxime Loriot | curator
Thierry-Maxime Loriot, a former model who worked with Lindbergh in the 1990’s, is curator of this stunning expo. It is his ode to Lindbergh’s multifaceted oeuvre from 1978 to the present day.
He uses a multi-media thematic approach marking Lindbergh’s creative development. Focusing on his themes, imaginary world and passions throughout the years.
Nine different style sections tell his story: Supermodels, Couturiers, Zeitgeist, Dance, The Darkroom, The Unknown, Silver Screen, Icons and an exclusive Rotterdam gallery. Not only photo’s but also a range of never-before-seen personal notes, props, Polaroids, contact sheets and storyboards are on display.
Loriot is also the brain behind the very successful ‘The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier’ expo as well as the Viktor & Rolf retrospective, opening at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne next month. Shall we?
From Christy to Cindy and from Eva to Nadja: the supermodels from our hay days (what was a George Michael clip without them?) are now also in their late forties and/or fifties. And even more beautiful today. Age is just a number.
kunsthal.nl until feb, 12 2017