Looks like the ‘90s resurgence is extending to supermodels. While catwalker Christy Turlington has just landed a new Marc Jacobs campaign and the subscriber cover for Harper’s Bazaar’s September issue, Vogue Italia is making a splash by tapping modeling icons Claudia Schiffer and Stephanie Seymour for some very naked newsstand action.
Now 51 years old, Seymour — who is also famed for her leading role in Guns N’ Roses iconic 1992 music video for “November Rain” alongside then-boyfriend Axl Rose — wears nothing but a black belt, ankle-strap heels and a statement necklace for her August cover. According to Vogue Italia, her racy photoshoot is a tribute to the late fashion photographer Helmut Newton.
“Here Stephanie Seymour is no longer the teenage girl of some of the master’s most iconic past images,” the magazine says. “She is an active subject, she shares the process with the photographer. A process involving women fully aware of their sexuality, and comfortable in their own skin. It is the story of women capable of handling not only the consequences of exposing their body but most of all, the power that Newton was the first to acknowledge them and that, today, they have no intention of relinquishing.”
While Seymour’s second cover sees her covered up in an explosion of lime-green feathers from Saint Laurent, fellow ‘90s supermodel and August cover star Schiffer remains undressed for her two Newton-inspired shoots. In one, the 48-year-old German beauty uses a black clutch and acid yellow heels to cover her bare body; in the other, she’s naked save for a black Saint Laurent blazer.
Photographer Collier Schorr explained how Seymour and Schiffer’s age was an advantage on the set.
“Because of who I am and who they are, I think these shoots are about women’s acknowledgment of their own sexuality, and is very different to the representation of desire, which is always connected to the maker of the picture,” she told Vogue Italia. “I think this was about Claudia, Stephanie’s and my relationships with our sexualities and bodies, and about being seen as older women.
“When you are photographing women such as Stephanie and Claudia, who are literally like the walking lexicons of fashion gesture in photography, there are things they will and will not do. There’s not one thing that you see in these photographs that Claudia didn’t want to do — if she didn’t want to do it, she changed it,” Schorr added.
The covers have been met with mixed reviews. While others have hailed the photos as “spectacular,” one commenter dubbed it “the grandma issue” and another critic complained, “this is not fashion, it’s porn.” Some have also accused the magazine of heavily airbrushing the photos and objected to the sexy poses.
“When can we move on from high heels, nudity and suggestive poses?” read another comment.
‘What an awkward photo! Really!!!!” a commenter added. “So many women at 51 look just as good. Tasteless!”
“Wonderful to see the ‘90s supermodels of my generation still rocking their beauty after all these years,” countered a fan. “Yes we still rock as mature women ... great to banish stereotypes which were created by closed-minded people. Yes, mature women back in action!”
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