Azzedine Alaia and Arthur Elgort: Freedom


12 500

Celebrating the dynamic and enduring collaboration between two icons of fashion and photography

In the 1970s, despite not yet knowing each other, Azzedine Alaïa and Arthur Elgort were responding to a similar current within the cultural landscape. Alaïa realized that fashion had changed; its locus had shifted from the salons to the streets. Elgort, then a young photographer for American Vogue, was in the process of establishing a new vision for photography that also moved outdoors, away from the studio; his “snapshots” ushered in a more informal photographic style marked by its spontaneity. Both actively contributed to popularizing the mobile, assertive and independent woman within fashion.
This book commemorates the long collaboration between Alaïa and Elgort. Many of the images produced by the duo are considered classics, emblematic of the late 20th century. This volume reproduces approximately 200 of these dynamic, playful photographs, many of which feature Alaïa himself.
Arthur Elgort (born 1940) studied painting at Hunter College but quickly transitioned to photography. In his long career he has worked on many major advertising campaigns, including for Chanel, Valentino and Yves Saint Laurent, shot countless fashion spreads and published several books, including Personal Fashion (1983), The Swan Prince (1987), Models Manual (1993), Ballet Camera Crazy (2004), The Big Picture (2014), Jazz (2018) and I Love…. (2019).
Azzedine Alaia (1935–2017) was a Tunisian couturier and shoe designer. He produced his first ready-to-wear collection in 1980. When his clothes were first sold at Bergdorf Goodman in 1982, it was considered so momentous that the New York Times later listed it as among the landmark events that altered the city’s cultural landscape. Among his devotees were Grace Jones (who wore several of his creations in A View to a Kill), Tina Turner, Raquel Welch, Madonna, Janet Jackson and Naomi Campbell.