fashion

Peter Lindbergh's fight to free women from 'the terror of youth and perfection'

Published 1st February 2018
Nicole Kidman shot by Peter Lindbergh, Los Angeles (2016).
Credit: Peter Lindbergh
Peter Lindbergh's fight to free women from 'the terror of youth and perfection'
Written by Ana Rosado, CNN
As the #MeToo movement marches on and the collective voice against inappropriate sexual behavior grows ever louder, German photographer Peter Lindbergh's gentle approach to image-making -- and the women he captures -- stands out more than ever.
Lupita Nyong'o shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016).
Lupita Nyong'o shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016). Credit: Peter Lindbergh
"I think I know him so well, so there is an enormous sense of trust involved and friendship there, and that's very, very powerful," Nicole Kidman wrote in Lindbergh's latest photography tome. "I would have felt incredibly shy if it was somebody else."
Helen Mirren shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016).
Helen Mirren shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016). Credit: Peter Lindbergh
The book, titled "Shadows on the Wall" features outtakes from the photographer's second Pirelli calendar, shot in 2017. His cast included some of Hollywood's most renowned actresses, including Kidman, Jessica Chastain, Lupita Nyong'o and Penelope Cruz.
Lindbergh's rejection of airbrushed half-clothed models in favor of fully dressed, unretouched actresses was a far cry from the high-gloss sexuality the calendar is known for.
While many of Lindbergh's contemporaries meticulously stage their images, Lindbergh prefers to rely on the individual qualities of his sitters to produce striking and intimate photographs.
Uma Thurman shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016).
Uma Thurman shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016). Credit: Peter Lindbergh
"It should be a duty for every photographer walking today to use his creativity and influence to free women and everyone from the terror of youth and perfection," Lindbergh wrote in the book's introduction.
Kidman, who recently praised the power of actresses over 40 at the Screen Actors Guild Award ("We are potent and powerful and viable," she said as she accepted her trophy), called the photos a "celebration of actresses."
Penélope Cruz shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016).
Penélope Cruz shot by Peter Lindbergh, New York (2016). Credit: Peter Lindbergh
"The voice of actresses, I think, is getting stronger and stronger now, just in terms of the desire to have stories and have places in which we can work and we can age and we can still keep feeling the stories of women," she wrote.
"Shadows on the Wall" by Peter Lindbergh is published by Taschen and is available now.