Thursday 10 September 2009

‘When You’re a Boy: Men’s Fashion styled by Simon Foxton’

 Yesterday I found myself at one of my favourite spaces, The Photographer’s gallery in Ramillies street, W1. I was there not a week earlier hoping desperately that there were still tickets available for the Simon Foxton lecture which took place on Tuesday. Unfortunately no tickets were returned, so I popped in again yesterday to console myself with his bold and exuberant images.
A retrospective of sorts ‘When You’re a Boy: Men’s Fashion styled by Simon Foxton’ looks back at his iconic styling career to date and its influence over men’s fashion since the early 1980s. This fantastic show illustrates how much of an authority Foxton has been on men’s fashion over the decades and how his work has changed attitudes towards both male subject photography and men’s fashion styling.
Whilst not at all unheard of, I think it is a great honour for the Photographer’s Gallery to celebrate a stylist and champion the clear influence they have and apply to each and every image they create. Working with equally as iconic photographer’s Jason Evans, Alasdair McLellan and the master Nick Knight, ‘When You’re a Boy: Men’s Fashion styled by Simon Foxton’ highlights his most powerful images which featured in publications ranging from i-D and The Face to and Arena Homme Plus and GQ Style.
Focusing purely on men’s fashion and the male as the subject for the past 25 years, Foxton’s body of work has clearly changed and redirected attitudes towards mainstream fashion image making, and has consistently challenged society’s notions of masculinity. Having been a contributor to the creative force that gave birth to Youth Culture, Foxton was at the forefront when he joined i-D in 1984 pushing the boundaries and exploring subcultures such as Punk and Rave. Foxton’s most widely explored subject is that of Gay subculture, subtly interweaving hints of homo-eroticism through much of his early styling to produce a new concept in men’s fashion.
What I love most about Foxton’s body of work is the clear continuity and loyalty to his subject that has kept his work both relevant and ground breaking throughout his career. What inspires me most about each and every one of his images is that they embody the feeling of a time and a place and give the sense that they were a part of something much bigger. Another factor which I believe can be attributed to Foxton’s success is the fervent energy that jumps of the pages in magazines and whether he is styling editorial or advertising the reader is left wanting more. It’s this passion and energy which shines through for me and I feel it is unrivalled.
I’d highly recommend this exhibition to anyone who professes their love of fashion as it is a must.
‘When You’re a Boy: Men’s Fashion styled by Simon Foxton’ is showing for FREE until 4th October.
Image courtesy of the Photographer's gallery website.

No comments:

Post a Comment