Ageless Beauty

By Trisse Loxley

For anyone who ever followed fashion or passed a magazine rack back in the day, photographer and Vanity Fair contributor Timothy Greenfield-Sanders ‘ latest exhibit (now at the Kasher Gallery in New York) is a must-see. Titled ‘Supermodels of the 70s and 80s,’ it’s a fashion show of a different kind, featuring faces from our past – Carol Alt, Beverly Johnson, Lisa Taylor, Kim Alexis, among others – as they are today. Or more to the point, as they really are.

The large-format portraits were taken with just one light source – no under-fill, no bounce cards, no hair-lights – and no retouching. The reason: “They didn’t need it.” According to the man behind the lens, “I want you to see them as I see them – beautiful, intelligent, active and vivacious.”

In truth, Greenfield-Sanders is not a fan of doctoring shots. “I hate to see photographs that are so blown out – nobody over 50 has a wrinkle,” he says, “it sends a terrible message” – and not just to those older than 50, but to the young as well. As he sees it, retouching (whether through Photoshop or its extreme – plastic surgery) creates both literally and figuratively “a childish way of looking at the world.”

Aside from giving us an honest view of beauty, with Supermodels (women who now range in age from 49 to 60), Greenfield-Sanders is sending a message of his own. “I hope you come away feeling better about yourself – that you’re pretty enough and competent enough to be who you are.”

Supermodels of the 70s and 80s is at the Steven Kasher Gallery in New York until February 27.