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top flight:

peter lindbergh,
supermodel maker

A new book and exhibition celebrate the iconic fashion photographer.

Written By JACK SUNNUCKS

That photographer Peter Lindbergh defined an era is something of an understatement. Case in point: his January 1990 British Vogue cover starring a communion of young then-unknown models—Naomi, Linda, Christy, Tatjana, and Cindy, who would go on to inspire George Michael’s “Freedom” video, Gianni Versace’s ultra-glamorous runway shows, and the supermodel phenomenon at large. The Lindbergh aesthetic is instantly recognizable—elegant women shot in high-contrast black and white, most frequently bare-faced. His ability to make every woman look good with minimal makeup has also made him a favorite not only of Vogue, but also many an Oscar-nominated actress, including Cate Blanchett, Angelina Jolie, and Julianne Moore. 

This month, the photographer’s visionary oeuvre is surveyed in an exhibition at the Kunsthal, Rotterdam, and in an accompanying tome published by Taschen. Open now until February 12, 2017, Peter Lindbergh. A Different Vision on Fashion Photography,” curated by Thierry-Maxime Loriot, brings together images from four decades of the photographer’s work, revealing the dramatic influence of the worlds of cinema and dance on his portraits, his rejection of retouching in favor of a raw, elegant beauty, and his celebration of women of a certain age. All this is contextualized with commentary from such notable collaborators such as Nicole Kidman, Cindy Crawford, and Anna Wintour—Lindbergh was responsible for her very first Vogue cover.

Here, highlights from Peter Lindbergh. A Different View on Fashion.


PARIS, 1997 VOGUE ITALIA © PETER LINDBERGH (COURTESY OF PETER LINDBERGH, PARIS / GAGOSIAN GALLERY)

Lindbergh is famed for his love of bare-faced beauty; he believes it allows a woman’s character to come to the fore.


CINDY CRAWFORD, TATJANA PATITZ, HELENA CHRISTENSEN, LINDA EVANGELISTA, CLAUDIA SCHIFFER, NAOMI CAMPBELL, KAREN MULDER & STEPHANIE SEYMOUR, BROOKLYN, 1991 (VERSACE, F/W 1991) © PETER LINDBERGH, PARIS / GAGOSIAN GALLERY

A bevy of supermodels pose for Versace F/W 1991 on the streets of Brooklyn in an iconic display of biker chic.



Paris, 1997 Vogue Italia © Peter Lindbergh Courtesy of Peter Lindbergh, Paris / Gagosian Gallery

The worlds of dance and cinema have inspired many of his stories, such as this one for Vogue Italia in 1997.

cindy
crawford

The world-famous supermodel stars in a cinematic movie shoot for The Violet Files.