Gavin Bond’s Era-Defining Portraits of the 90s Supers

“Fashion back again then was these kinds of incredible theatre,” claims Gavin Bond, whose new reserve and exhibition files a bygone period of glamour and enjoyment backstage


Gavin Bond enrolled in a fashion design program at Central Saint Martins in 1988. Tiny did he know then, but he was about to immerse himself in one of the most thrilling moments in British trend record: the age of the supermodel was in complete swing, glamour was about to give way to grunge in the web pages of publications like Dazed, i-D and The Facial area, and a radical new faculty of designers were about to alter the marketplace forever. London was at the coronary heart of it all, and CSM was an incubator for numerous of its most ingenious changemakers – during Bond’s experiments alone, his contemporaries involved John Galliano, Alexander McQueen, Hussein Chalayan, Giles Deacon, and Katie Grand. “It was that variety of melting pot of time,” he tells An additional.

Opening this week at Hamiltons Gallery, Bond’s initially ever solo exhibition Currently being There paperwork this pivotal second in manner, getting us backstage at some of the 90s’ most historic displays, via pictures he commenced having 30 yrs ago even though he was even now a student. “With my diploma system, of course the hottest ticket was heading to exhibits in the course of manner 7 days,” Bond recalls. “By opportunity in direction of the stop of my graduation, I finished up likely to a Vivienne Westwood exhibit where by I was working with another university student. She wrote a piece and I went backstage with a camera and ran about and took some photos. And I guess they had been pleasant they finished up being released in The Moments by journalist Iain R Webb, who was the vogue director at the time. Then they sparked Vivienne’s desire.”

6 months later on, Westwood invited Bond to doc her seminal sexually-charged Cafe Culture demonstrate, in which a topless Kate Moss famously arrived down the runway carrying only a micro skirt and a pirate hat though ingesting a Magnum ice cream. Westwood turned these images into a marketing poster afterwards, and from then on Bond acquired access to some of the major displays in London, Paris and Milan. “Fashion again then was this sort of amazing theatre,” he suggests. “There’s so a great deal Galliano in the e book, and each individual a person of his demonstrates was anything completely distinct. The women transformed into these characters and it was almost like they were being entering into a engage in or a movie generation. And there was not social media then men and women would go and observe the shows and you’d occur absent with only a memory and a fantasy. It was such a specific time to be section of fashion.”

Bond’s numerous shots from these several years – the greater part of which he unearthed in the silent of lockdown in 2020, whilst sequestered in a cabin in the woods in upstate New York – are unusually romantic for backstage images. Shot fully in black and white on a slow, medium structure movie digital camera, they seize supermodels Carla, Cindy, Christy, Claudia, Kate, Linda and Naomi at the apex of their collective fame. Nevertheless, rather than documenting them as towering icons, Bond’s portraits strike a uncommon stability in between cinematic depth and a candid relieve, capturing very little times of beauty and stillness amid the frantic flurry of action backstage. “It’s peculiar seeking back,” Bond claims. “I went into it with this kind of innocence and these naivety. In a way it was the starting for me, and with us all getting the identical age I didn’t go into it with that kind of, ‘God, it’s Kate Moss’ experience. I feel that’s what can make the pics particular simply because you can see that it is cozy.”

Along with the exhibition, Bond is also releasing a ebook with Notion which delves into these several years in a a little bit various way some of the photographs surface in colour and take on a extra irreverent temper – models participating in close to, consuming champagne, and smoking fags backstage. The foreword to the ebook is composed by legendary art dealer Philippe Garner, who to start with procured a several of Bond’s photos when the photographer was just 23. “It’s sort of occur whole circle,” he states. “It’s sort of ironic that my initially major display and my initial main ebook is rather considerably the very first time I picked up a digital camera, which is genuinely thrilling.”

Bond, who now primarily shoots key stars and Hollywood film stars – from Iggy Pop to Angelina Jolie – in major, shiny productions for magazines like GQ, suggests these instinctual early photographs are some of his very best performs. “Probably why that is, is just that they are easy and genuine,” he suggests. “You search at those people moments and which is the real factor. Even now, there’s likely nothing at all I appreciate extra than that variety of pictures which has no bells and whistles, in which it’s just me and a digital camera.”

Gavin Bond: Currently being There is on look at at Hamiltons Gallery in London right until 29 Oct 2022. The e-book is accessible to get below.