I decided to add the photography segment because really, aside from fashion illustration, photography is the centre of fashion. Fashion photography has evolved over time from simple shots to artistry blended in to bring the best of designs, products, brands, models and concepts; a mix of creativity, talent and great shots that continue to blow our minds.
To start me off in this segment where I will be looking at the best of the fashion photographers, is Fabrice Monteiro.
When I saw the photographer’s project in collaboration with costume designer Doulsy (Jah Gal) dubbed the prophecy, I was taken aback. Fabrice takes you into his lenses, it’s like you see what he sees and feel the message he tries to convey.
Dorethea Lange a photojournalist born in the 80’s once said that Photography is not looking, it’s feeling. If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures. And with the prophecy he lived up to it.
Fabrice Monteiro is an artist based in the fields of photojournalism, fashion photography, and portraiture. Born to a Beninese father and a Belgian mother, Monteiro shifted from a professional model to a photographer.
Monteiro has worked on a number of projects but three of his projects that am most drawn to, are the prophecy, missing link and waxology. I am sucker for art and extraordinary way of presentation, the deep stuff.
So the prophecy; drought, pollution, habitat destruction, garbage and waste disposal, forest destruction, you name it. All these affect the environment in a way we hate to admit. Whether we burry our heads in the sand, if measures are not taken, if we don’t take care of the environment soon we will have to pay the price.
The Prophecy uses elaborate costumes and models to warn Senegal, Africa and the world as a whole on the ecological problems caused especially by human errors. According to Monteiro, he had to build a bridge between art and tradition.
These characters were created in Senegal working with costume designer Jah Gal and EcoFund revolving around ten locations with costumes partially made from garbage, reflecting the atmosphere and state in which each location was found.
In Tambacounda, for instance, a female figure at the centre of a bush fire like a bare tree trunk is holding up the remains of its foliage in the air to protect it.
In Dakar’s Hann Bay, What was once West Africa’s most beautiful beach is now polluted by excess blood running into the sea from a nearby slaughterhouse. A mutilated creature emerges from the tide of offal, warning the viewers against the consequences of environmental pollution.
Another scene shows a woman of superhuman size clothed in plastic remains, making her way through a landscape of garbage.
This project shows us the diversity of fashion to communicate and send out a message away from the Run ways, magazines or airwaves.
In The Missing Link, fabric monteiro again works with the Senegalese fashion label Bull Doff and the two recount the disruption of a society hovering between decline and a possible rebirth. The missing link is situated between traditional life and postmodern world In the fashion arena.
Waxology is the result of a cooperation between the jewellery and fashion brand MISWudé and Montero.
The body jewellery is made with the aid of wax-dyed cotton fabric cut into strips, processed using various different techniques and then brought into shape. Both material and form refer to traditional African handicrafts; the aesthetics, however, are also reminiscent of 18th century anatomical studies.
Crucial for West Africa’s aesthetic industry, this fabric stands here for Africa’s lacking sovereignty. The creative and constructive re-interpretation of the cloth in Waxology – its cutting and re-joining – liberates it from its colonial context, thus symbolizing nothing less than the re-invention of an African aesthetic identity. (makingAfrica.net)
Did you know:
Fashion photography has been in existence since the earliest days of photography. Cameras and photography were created around 1830 and In 1856, Adolphe Braun published a book containing photographs of Virginia Oldoini, Countess di Castiglione, a Tuscan noblewoman at the court of Napoleon III wearing fashionable official clothes. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]