“Antiglossy: Fashion Photography Now” Revisits the Role of Fashion Photography Today

by | Apr 14, 2019 | Book Club, Culture, Fashion, Featured

Fashion photography book: Antiglossy by Patrick Remy.
© ANTIGLOSSY: Fashion Photography Now by Patrick Remy, Rizzoli, 2019. 

Antiglossy: Fashion Photography Now by Paris-based photography critic, editor, and art director, Patrick Remy, explores the nature of fashion photography today in relation to the glory days of inspirational spreads featured in early 20th century glossies. While Vogue and like-minded glossies introduced the world to the heady notion of fashion editorials, the world has changed with social media platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest, both of which cater to immediate gratification and the flourishing of the blogger/influencer. In yesteryear, the sleek pages of aspirational magazines led to models (hello, Twiggy), screen stars, and couturiers’ gaining unprecedented fame—as equal to that as the photographers that shot them.

Antiglossy: Fashion Photography Now book from Rizzoli
Photograph by Daniel Sannwald.

While the days of photographers such as Richard Avedon, Irving Penn, and William Klein might be gone, Remy brings together 30 of the most avant-garde photographers out there now—visionary masters that daily influence the cultural and stylistic trends that push fashion to new heights. While Remy points out that the ease of the “see now, buy now” culture propagated by bloggers, influencers, and digital media has in some ways changed the commercial viability of fashion photography and brand campaigns previously exhibited on the pages of glossy magazines, exciting new opportunities have brought it back in a very different and more real way.

Antiglossy: Fashion Photography Now by Rizzoli + Patrick Remy.
Photograph by Charlotte Wales.

The photographers in this book—from Joanna Piotrowska’s striking black-and-white photographs to Charlotte Wales’s high-fashion yet somehow accessible snaps—have left lasting images that each, as Remy says, aspire to, and move away from the usual references. They are “singular in expression.” The black-and-white photography depicted by Noé Sendas in this book is not only incredibly artistic but has a cinematic appeal while Charlie Engman’s series of models in two-toned pieces in varying stages of posing and his puzzle-piece photographs of Chloë Sevigny would make any Instagram/fashion-lover swoon. As one flips through these pages, it becomes apparent that the idea of the fashion photographer and his/her collaboration with brands and magazines is far from over—it has just taken a new, more artistic approach. “The struggle against standardization is permanent,” writes Remy. “Society as it is, and not as it is dreamt, has replaced the glam, the glitter and the gloss.” Let’s go with the here and now then, the antiglossy.

Antiglossy: Fashion Photography Now by Patrick Remy.
Photograph by Charlie Engman.
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