lunedì 26 maggio 2008

The Dead Girl Wears Prada

I love coffe table books but now I have so many I should set up a weekly rotation. Luckily for me, they're usual a little expensive, so I can afford a new one only from time to time!
One of my favorite is the well known High Fashion Crime Scenes from LA based photographer Melanie Pullen. I saw her photos years ago and I fell in love with her project, her debut collection where she connected violence and style, crime scenes and high fashion in a fascinating yet slightly disturbing way.

Oscar's Grass


Miyake


Dorothy


Using LAPD and County Coroner's office old crime scene photos as sources, Pullen meticulously recreate the set of murders and bloody events, using models as victims and styling them with haute couture pieces, from Prada and Miu Miu, to de la Renta and Chanel. There is so much behind this...the idea crime and fashion fascination are today not dissimilar, the representation of dead bodies like mannequins, the glamourization of violence in our ages. In her bio you can read "she literally redress what are deeply disturbing events" and I think this is a perfect definition.

Phones

Nina


With WeeGee as one of her inspirations, Pullen mix artistic experience and a professional eye, building her sets with the help of stylists, make up artists, light crew, etc. This way, the set itself looks like a "behind the scenes" of a high fashion show, with up to 60 persons involved.
The Metro Series, the Barrel Series, the Hanging Series, the Taxi Cabs pictures, are totally mesmerizing. At the beginning the set distracts from the real scene and only after a while the viewer understands he's actually looking at a representation of a (well dressed) dead girl.

Ferris Wheel

The Weitzman File


Station

11 commenti:

Rachie-Pie ha detto...

sheezz! they are a tad creepy but super cool aswell! I am slihtly scared of the hanging girl! looks like a good coffee book though!

yulanda ha detto...

Thanks for introducing me to her! I'm completely intrigued by her work.

Fashion Ivy ha detto...

Very good photographs

Fia ha detto...

I don't think glamorizing violence against women is a good idea. The problem is bad enough as it is without making it look...desirable and fashionable. I just can't imagine a victim of violence would find these pictures beautiful.

AlicePleasance ha detto...

@ fia: I don't think Pullen's purpose is to glamorize violence, she simply shows what the contemporary era is became about crime. When you look at Oscar's Grass, for example, you first think how nice is the yellow dress and how cool is the picture. Then when you see the blood and think you're looking at a representation of a "dead body" you feel guilty. It's shocking. Regarding violence, I think there is more criticism than exaltation behind Melanie Pullen's work.
But this is only my opinion and thank you so much for sharing yours :-)

Danz ha detto...

Wow! Really powerful photos!

The Clothes Horse ha detto...

Thank you so, so much for this post. I saw some of her photographs before and I couldn't remember her name!

Vain and Vapid ha detto...

Wow, they are so eery and beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

Guerreira ha detto...

I have to say I agree with Fia on this one...

Christina DeSmet ha detto...

i love this idea!! To die for fashion! It is done in a way that isn't too gruesome and shows the clothing beautifully

kater ha detto...

I remember seeing some of her photographs before and they've never left me. There is something really disturbing about them. There is one of her's I think, where the girl is stuffed into a box in the corner of the picture, and it takes you ages to notice it. I think it's a really interesting thing, commentary, whatever, on women in art. It also really freaks me out.