Steven Meisel - Photographs New York Tuesday, October 2, 2012 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Private Collection, New York

  • Literature

    Rizzoli, In Vogue: The Illustrated History of the World's Most Famous Fashion Magazine, 2006, cover
    Vogue, October 1992, p. 286

  • Catalogue Essay

    As a leading force in the fashion world, Steven Meisel captured one of the industry’s most defining turning points when, in the 1990s, the glamorous luster, kaleidoscopic patterns and puffy silhouettes that typified the previous decade were replaced by a simplified, loose and refreshingly bohemian aesthetic. “This is the new couture,” fashion legend Karl Lagerfeld declared in the October 1992 Vogue article that featured 15 of Meisel’s photographs, including the present lot. “It’s called undressing the dressy.” Indeed, the iconic article, Time For Change, became the lightning rod for the industry, powered by Meisel’s photographic renderings of the new standards for couture set by such tastemakers as Chanel, Versace and Valentino. Alternating between studio interiors and château exteriors, the photographs featured Linda Evangelista and Kristen McMenamy in a series of poses that ranged from playful to casual to classic.

    In the current lot, the two leading supermodels—themselves known for their irreverent and visionary style—are shown frolicking about the grounds of the Château de Champs in Champs-sur-Marne, France. Meisel relinquished the dramatically hunched poses reserved for fashion images and instead depicted the models in a laissez-faire and intimate pose, as if accidentally stumbling upon them during a leisurely stroll. By doing so, Meisel captured the surging aesthetic that favored the simple over the ornate, the spontaneous over the staged and the natural over the artificial. The image is rife with insouciance and charm, thereby liberating haute couture from the heavy self-consciousness of traditional fashion photography and presenting an image that has come to define the seemingly effortless elegance and beauty that ruled the final decade of the twentieth-century.


Walking in Paris, Linda Evangelista & Kristen McMenamy, Vogue, October

Archival pigment ink print, flush-mounted, printed later.
73 5/8 x 58 1/16 in. (187 x 147.5 cm)
Signed in ink, printed title, date and number 1/1 on an artist's label and on a certificate of authenticity, both accompanying the work.

$40,000 - 60,000 

Sold for $86,500

Contact Specialist
Vanessa Kramer Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs
+ 1 212 940 1245


2 October 2012
New York