Saturday, December 26, 2009

Naked Purple

We have something to look forward to in the new year. It looks like Freja has done one of the infamous "Purple Naked" editorials for Purple Magazine shot by Inez and Vinoodh.

"Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin photographed 22-year old Danish model Freja Beha Erichsen, whose unabashed androgyny is living proof that you can be one of the most important models in current fashion without having to hide your tattoos or your sexuality, and without having to conform to a stereotypically female look--just like the tattoo on her right arm: 'Serendipity is Life.'"

Other notable models who have participated in this regular feature include Angela Lindvall, Lara Stone and most recently, Dree Hemingway. All were shot by Inez and Vinoodh in the same black and white, stripped down, nothing left to the imagination style and I can imagine that the same will be true for Freja.

These editorials are always so gorgeous to me because they show the pureness and rawness of the human form without pretense or judgment; just the body in all it's unabashed, natural glory. And because our society is so prudish, it's rare that we get the chance to see images like this and to appreciate the wonders of one of the most beautiful and complex forms on earth. (Side Note: I still can't understand why people were so mad about Janet Jackson's nipplegate during the Super Bowl a few years back. For crying out loud, it was just a boob and we all have them to varying degrees of size. Get over it people. Frankly, I think the world would be a much happier and better place if we all saw a little more boob-age on a daily basis.)

And maybe since the nudity is always so unashamed and proud in this Purple feature, it kind of becomes de-sexualized to my eyes and instead transforms into a work of pure art. Does that make sense? I don't know...that could just be my way of viewing things like this. I'm pretty sure my perception is slightly skewed because I don't even bat an eye anymore when I see nudity in fashion photography. Often times it's one of the last things I'll notice because I'm too busy paying attention to all the other elements like the model, the poses, the perspective, etc... You know you're abnormal when Lara Stone looks stranger clothed than nude.

Anyway, this Purple Naked editorial is interesting news. I'm excited to see Freja get more work of course, but I'm also kind of afraid of the reaction this will elicit from all the fans. I just think this could be more fuel for the fangirl fire in a bad way, but I know I'm speaking too soon because we haven't even seen the final product yet. I will say that I'm disappointed this editorial will focus once again on Freja's androgyny. That's such an old meme. But perhaps at this point it's what she's known for and her trademark, so I should just get over it and accept the fact that it will be impossible for people to separate the two. At least she's consistently getting work right?

Though, I ask you this: Is it better to be famous for one thing to the point where it becomes a handicap, even though you owe your longevity to it? Or is it better to be malleable even if it means you'll fade away? I don't think it has to be either or and I'm just waiting for someone else to think the same way.

This is getting insanely long so I'll leave you with two more things to mull over. We'll undoubtedly see a full frontal nudity shot, so does this mean we'll finally get to see what the infamous 15th tattoo looks like? And this is the closest that we've ever gotten to official confirmation about Freja's sexuality so I wonder, why now? Why in this way? Oh Freja. Just when I think I have you all figured out, you go and do something to show me that the only thing I know for sure is that I know nothing at all.

Image Credits:


Anonymous said...

First of all, I like reading your thoughts, because you're objective and the different points of views are always interesting.

Concerning Freja's androgyny once again used for an ed, I'm very divided. I mean, I would like to see more Freja's fiminity but yes androgyny is becoming her trade mark and I think that it is what will give her more work, and will make people remember her. There's not much other girls like her in the fashion industry right now, I will even say that she's alone.

But I'm sure that we will get to see Freja's feminity again, maybe not as much as we would like to but still.

And about that ed, like you've said,we will see her as a simple human person 'without pretense and judgment'. We will see the Real Freja, and the real her doesn't have to hide what she is, androgynous.

CAn't wait

Anonymous said...

I love the way you battle out your opinions, it makes for a very interesting read.

About the nudity, I recently read some comments on the previous Purple editorial by Terry Richardson, where people were calling it perverted and pornographic, whereas when I saw it, that thought never entered my mind.

I would love to see more feminine work for Freja aswell, it suits her, but like you say, androgynous work is better than no work.


Anonymous said...

I do believe that this is the closest "confirmation" we've had on her sexuality. Idk why now though? Will there be some type of interview in the mag? Either way I'm excited for this ed...I think it's a good move.

Anonymous said...

i'm on the fence about seeing Freja all nude. it just seems intrusive after all these years of being a fan.
i don't know, it makes much more sense in my head.;)

and yes this is bound to send all of Freja's batshit crazy fans into a frenzy.i'll be sure to steer clear of her tfs thread.*sigh*

Anonymous said...

yeah I know what you mean by intrusive... Can't really explain either.

Miranda said...

"You know you're abnormal when Lara Stone looks stranger clothed than nude." Oh, your thoughts amuse me to no end :)

"And because our society is so prudish..." You've taken the words right out of my mouth.

Gosh, I love your blog.

Regarding the sexuality, I'm not sure... do you think Freja was aware that she'd be written about that way?

Rrose Sélavy said...

Thanks for all the comments and thoughts everyone. I love reading what you all have to say, and I'm impressed that you all can read through my ramblings. :)

J said...

Accidental outing?

Anonymous said...

do you think she'll be in the 30+ models in the VI Jan issue?
fingers crossed the Meisel thing wasn't one time only.

Rrose Sélavy said...

^I hope she is, but I really do think the Meisel ed was a one time thing. I've been wrong before though...

J: Perhaps. But those were only proofs so what we actually see in the issue could be different. They could always change the wording, or leave that part out.

Mila said...

I love your blog :) Not only do you keep us all up to date, but you also include your own thoughts, ideas and opinions which are always refreshing and nice to read...

Well technically it DID only say "your sexuality" which is a very general topic and does not necessarily have to mean "sexual orientation" so it might not be what we think it is...still, I'm both excited and worried if she really is choosing to tell the world about who she'd rather sleep with simply because she's so mysterious and never really spoke about her personal life which I like because it keeps her interesting and genuine in my point of view.

Do you, by any chance, happen to know when the "Purple Naked" editorial will come out?

Rrose Sélavy said...

^I too like that she usually keeps her personal life personal and private. It really does make her more interesting and genuine as you say. And sorry, but I don't know when exactly it will come out. It's bi-annual, so perhaps around the same time as fashion week?

Tiara said...

This wouldn't be the closest "confirmation" we have of Freja's sexuality. She did an audio interview with James Kaliardos for V Magazine in 2006 and she was very open. She even talkedabout her "lover" and made lesbian jokes with James.

I don't think that Freja's androgyny is anything to be ashamed of. It is clearly a part of who she is and my favorite photos of Freja are always the ones that are true to her spirit, her identity, her personality, her character, her beauty. I don't think her androgyny is an impediment. Not at all.

Rrose Sélavy said...

^I've heard that interview many times, and I don't think it was a confirmation. It was all inference and subtext. Yeah, it's obvious to us, but no one actually, officially confirmed anything in the interview. This is different because there is a direct mention of sexuality. But even then it doesn't outright state what Freja's sexuality's just assumed.

And I'm not ashamed of her androgyny--more like tired of it. I think she's more than that and only recently has she been limited as such. At the start of her career she was far from it and that's the model I fell for so I'll just always have an affinity for that. :)