Horst P Host, one of the greatest pioneer fashion photographers of the 20th century, will have a four month exhibition at the Victoria & Albert museum, reviewing his six decades of life behind the lens.
The way that Horst chose to stage and present the female body is filled with timeless elegance and grace. The most famous piece in this exhibition was “The Mainbocher Corset”, captured by Horst in Vogue’s Paris studio in 1939. Designers like Donna Karan continue to use it as an inspiration for their outerwear collections today.
霍斯特是20世紀最偉大的先鋒時尚攝影師之一，維多利亞艾伯特博物館將於2014年9月至2015年1月展示他60年職業生涯中的數百件傑出作品。霍斯特通過精心設計的舞臺與陳列物，展現出了女性超越時代的幽雅風韻。本次展覽最出名的作品要屬他1939年於《時尚》雜誌巴黎攝影棚拍攝的《梅因布徹胸衣（The Mainbocher Corset）》。當代時尚設計師如多納卡蘭（Donna Karan）仍在他這副佳作中找許設計靈感。
My favourite pieces are the “Haute couture” and “Female nudes” hanging in the first room of the exhibition. It was a time that Horst was reconstructing the scenes of the classical period when drapes, muses and columns are symbols of eternal paradise and ever-lasting beauty. Horst’s initial style and his pursuit of photography were influenced by George Hoyningen-Huene, who he met in 1930. George’s portrait is illustrated in this room, together with the portrait of Coco-Chanel, who was also a life-long friend of Horst, and who Horst admired as “The centre of the circle”.
Most black and white fashion photographs of the 30s displayed the craft of jewellers and hatters. Together with gown designers and photographers, the four elements created a unique art form of the period, where each fashion picture was treated as an art piece. As I walk along the aisle, I see that the style of Horst still lives in various forms today: the way that we design and dress, the way we perceive old-fashioned class, and the way we portray a moment of happiness, or loneliness. The portraits in “a night at Schönbrunn” remind me of poses that wedding photography often adopts.
許多30年代黑白照片除了服裝設計外還展示了珠寶與禮貌設計，加上時尚攝影師，這四種元素形成了那個年代獨有的藝術風格，每一下快門都做足了準備功夫，每一件作品都如藝術創作一般對待。我沿著展廳長廊走下去，我看到霍斯特的風格仍在今日社會蔓延，並以別種方式滲透到生活中: 人們對古典美的理解，我們設計與著裝的搭配風格，以及我們如何記錄某一時刻的幸福或寂寞。《美泉宮的一夜（a night at Schönbrunn）》一系列作品是霍斯特讓拜訪他朋友們特意穿著華麗的禮服拍的，而這似乎是現今許多婚紗影樓裡常見的姿勢。
During the Second World War, the complicated situation in Europe and the world led to constant shifting political regimes and propagandas. Artists started to seek answers in dreams and the subconscious. This sort of exploration and way of life gradually affected the design and fashion industry. From the clouds of Magritte to the surreal world of Dali, Horst exercised his taste for classical beauty within the frame of the surrealist concept using modern technology. Horst used traditional and new elements to give soul to still life, while decorating prestigious models as statues.
Horst started using coloured photography techniques in the 1930s. This exhibition collected over 70 Vogue fashion covers by Horst. Apart from infamous movie stars and super models, the coloured prints also show the make-up, accessories and handbag fashions in 1939, as well as swimming-suit beauty in 1941. This seems to have documented and hinted at the start of pop art 10 years later. We see the birth of mass production and consumerism, where women portray and place themselves in the household and in society, as the penetration of the public mindset started to spread through coloured photography, advertisement and fashion in magazines. The only model not in the fashion industry in the colour prints are of Madame Wellington Koo, who is the only Chinese model in the collection. In the portrait she is wearing her own style of green Chinese QiPao, and drawing viewer’s attention to her inch long nail- ChenYu’s dragon fire lacquer. The only coloured portrait of Madame Koo in the National Portrait Gallery was also photographed by Horst, one year earlier in 1942.
霍斯特30年代末便開始採用彩色攝影科技，本次展覽搜羅了他拍攝的70多期《時尚》雜誌封面照。時尚大片裡展示了電影明星與時尚模特外，還包括1939年的明星化妝品、發式與皮包風尚、1941年的泳裝時尚。這似乎昭示了10多年後波普藝術的開端：消費與生活方式、女人的地位、以及大眾意識形態滲透已經開始通過雜誌、時尚、與彩色攝影技術悄然的大規模化。彩色相片裡唯一一張與時尚界無關的作品是一位中國女性，威靈頓古 (顧維鈞)夫人黃蕙蘭, 相片裡她穿著自己設計的綠色旗袍，展示著中國紅的指甲油。她在英國國家肖像館裡的唯一一幅彩色肖像亦是由霍斯特於1942年拍攝。
As we moved into the colour session we met the glamourous Carmen Dell’Orefice, who is the oldest working model in the industry. Carmen has experienced unhappy marriages and financial difficulties but she has never given up on love or stopped growing with the world. Carmen was easy going and sensitive to social and political incidents. Horst understood that Carmen was a child, and to calm her he used to tell her, “you are the most beautiful woman in the world today.” Standing next to her portrait of when she was 15, someone asked her why she was not smiling, whether it was because the flash took three seconds. “Oh no,” She said, “I was still very young then, and I was wearing braces”.
我們在彩色攝影作品的角落邂逅時尚圈裡年紀最長的模特姐姐, 卡門·戴爾·奧利菲斯（Carmen Dell’Orefice）。她離過三次婚，破過兩次產，但是從未放棄愛情，跟緊時代步伐。對社會實事敏感，有氣場而平易近人。因為經歷過底層生活，她堅持自己做許多事。15歲時她曾經為了省公交車錢穿溜冰鞋上通告。而因為家裡沒有電話，《時尚》雜誌曾經專門雇一個人跑去通知她工作的日程安排。霍斯特剛接觸她并為她拍攝時，知道她是孩子，照顧她不要緊張，並告訴她說，“今天，你就是世界上最美麗的女人。”有人問她為什麽當時相片里沒有笑，是因為緊張還是攝影拍攝時間太長──要三秒鐘才閃一下，她說，“因為我當時年紀小，還帶著牙套。”