Thursday, January 20, 2011

Tears Us Apart

Ever since I've seen the images from Freja's new Vogue Paris editorial, I've had Joy Division's Love Will Tear Us Apart in my head for obvious reasons. And maybe it's fitting that I do, because I can't get the first image and all it's lingering emotions out of my head.

En Vogue l’Été
Vogue Paris February 2011
Ph: Mario Sorrenti
Styling: Jane How
Other Models (not pictured): Daphne Groeneveld, Daria Werbowy, Joan Smalls, Lara Stone, Natasha Poly, Sasha Pivovarova, and Saskia de Brauw

If you can only dwell on one image from this editorial, make sure it's the first one. Make sure you view it in full size and make sure that you give it a good, long look. For if you do, you will be privy to one of the most touching and expressive moments from Freja's work in a long time. Notice the mascara touched trail of a tear down the cheek and the pain in her eyes. The emotion is tangible, but somehow paradoxically made subtle by the necklace's pronouncement of "tears us apart." All the noise is concentrated there. So if you're not careful you might miss this woman who is suffering such woes that not even being outfitted in head-to-toe Chloe can remedy her sadness.

Never mind that these shots don't tell a cohesive story. They aren't supposed to when they're designed to showcase the past season's top designer looks. Heck, they don't need to when you can find a story in each shot, in and of itself. This is an editorial packed with imagery; a visual punch to the senses. Each frame stands on it's own, each extols different merits, each displays different facets of the model that Freja has grown to become. When you can take any shot, blow it up and make an awesome poster out of it, you know it's good.

It's quite an editorial, and all the models play their parts exceedingly well. I can't remember the last time I liked every component of something so much. If you have to leave Carine, this is surely the way to do it. With a bang instead of a whimper. With the masses wanting more.

Image Credits: scans by tFS member Carla-A


Gill Ford said...

I am in complete agreement; the issues that showcase the looks of the season are always a favorite of mine because of how important each photograph is, not in the context, but in and of itself. Certainly, it is always great when you get a great series of photos that tell a story in parts, but what is special (for me, at least) about photography is the fact that it captures a single, significant moment in time, which is beautiful not just because of what is evoked in the image, but also in the knowledge that it will never be perfectly replicated in life again, but will live on, timelessly, through that one image that someone was fortunate enough to capture. Sometimes, I forget how gorgeous pictures can be when they are appreciated as individual works and not as collections... but February and August issues usually remind me of that! :)

I am quite in love with that first shot, for precisely the reasons you have given, Rrose. I can't remember the last time I saw Freja looking tearful, it seems she's always being asked to bring her own confidence to her pictures of late, whether she's feminine or androgynous. I know you've been frustrated with the lack of femininity in Freja's work, but let me say this: It's rare that she is shown as being vulnerable, and I will be the first to applaud the photographer who finally decides to capitalize on that hidden gold mine. I'd say that tragedy is one of, if not the most widely appreciated themes in art, because it really makes us feel something... But a crying Freja Beha Erichsen? That'll tear anyone apart.

Anonymous said...

^Wow! Well said!

Adriana said...

Gill, your comment almost moved me as much as Freja's picture. No one could have said it better, "ut a crying Freja Beha Erichsen? That'll tear anyone apart."

I find Freja's work and the way she handles herself in the industry so inspiring. Seeing her in such a vulnerable position in that picture makes me admire her even more because it shows us that like anyone else, this confident and talented model also has weaknesses. And that's OK. She's still the confident and talented model she is.

The Wrong Girl said...

I absolutely love that shot, wow. New Wallpaper...I think so! Loving your enthusiastic posts right now too :)

Niandra said...

Fantastic comment, Gill, I absolutely agree. Wow. What an image! She has so much range and I am thrilled to see more beyond the tough, androgynous look as well. I am so excited to see what comes next!

Anonymous said...

admittedly i'm more inclined to think of INXS' "never tear us apart" rather than joy division, but the sentiment is the same :)