MARCH – APRIL, 2003

The always provocative Ellen von Unwerth has created a sadomasochistic story told in pictures. A sexy romp in the country, in which three young women arrive at a Baroness’ estate expecting a relaxing weekend, and find something entirely different. In these startingly erotic photos, von Unwerth explores the vocabulary of bondage; the chains, ropes, masks, corsets, and hardware. The participants in the story; the girls, the Baroness, her chauffer, and the stablehand, combines the dark and dangerous along with the fun and games of contemporary life in the fast lane.
It is one of the most famous names in the world of photography. Former model, first to have set a goal on Claudia Schiffer, queen of sensuality, pioneer of porn chic, master of black and white, Ellen Von Unwerth is the world reference in fashion photography. Provocative and glamorous to the extreme, her works are odes with a false beauty vulgar, a privacy falsely offered.
Always the same concern to make live the fantasies, to give life to utopia. His film for Dior, I Found My Love In Portofino, very noticed, is a dream of which it is difficult to detach and which one does not want to wake up.
His trailer for Sex and the City is a fine example of Ellen Von Unwerth’s work. The woman is magnified, strong and fatal, giving up her status to marry an emancipated but fragile romanticism. An approach that can recall that of the great Helmut Newton.
The staging qualities of the woman quickly make Ellen Von Unwerth a must for major brands. For Lacoste, twenty seconds are enough to make the model, Mari¬a Gregerson, an archetype of emancipated woman. The decade that the photographer spent on the catwalks now allows her to shoot the beauties of this world like no other. The artist knows how to protect by unveiling, reinforcing by laying bare. A rare art.
Ellen Von Unwerth touches on the essence of filmmaking and photography with her paradoxes. This art of turning the world around a goal, to stage, to artificially create a universe to capture reality. This art, paradoxical in essence, Ellen masters it to perfection, almost naturally. And women, themselves, beings of paradox, thank him for it.


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