August 22 2014

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3 posts tagged "Victor Demarchelier"

The Tao of Tao Okamoto: A Sneak Preview of the Japanese Supermodel’s Photo Exhibition Celebrating Her Fifteen-Year Career



Tao Okamoto is a “model” in every sense of the word. Since she began appearing on runways and in glossy editorial spreads fifteen years ago, the Japanese beauty has become one of the industry’s most sought-after faces (and helped break down barriers for Asian catwalkers). In recent years, Okamoto has extended her influence beyond fashion. In 2011, she helped raise funds and awareness for victims of the 8.9-magnitude earthquake that rocked her home country. Last summer, Okamoto made her acting debut in the X-Men blockbuster The Wolverine. Keeping up her silver-screen streak, she was cast in the upcoming action flick, out in 2016, Batman vs. Superman, and also made her first TV appearance in the new Japanese miniseries Chi no Wadachi.

Adding to her already-full plate, Okamoto has found time in the past year to do a special series of shoots—commissioned by her New York agency, The Society Management—with fifteen emerging photographers to honor her fifteen-year-long career. The resulting exhibition, Tao Okamoto 15, will be unveiled tonight at Hudson Studios in Manhattan and is open to the public for one day only. On view are unique images lensed by up-and-coming talents including Max Snow, Victor Demarchelier, and Santiago & Mauricio. An exclusive sneak peek of Tim Richardson’s portrait debuts here on Below, we spoke with Okamoto about her latest showcase, balancing acting and modeling, and more.

Do you have any interesting on-set memories from the photo shoots for your new exhibition?
I remember the Maurizio Bavutti [shoot]. It was just the day before my movie premiere, and it was a funny experience because I looked totally different from one day to the next—from being covered in clay, which was an edgy, artistic look, to a glamorous Hollywood look.

Had you collaborated with any of these photographers before, and did you enjoy working with any one of them in particular?
I hadn’t worked with any of them before, but each and every one of them surprised me because they all had very unique, exciting ideas, so I can’t pick only one. I just followed and fit myself into each of their worlds.

How have your recent acting roles changed your outlook on modeling?
I think they’ve allowed me to become more fearless and to express myself in a bigger way. Acting has also freshened me up to the subject of photography.


You sat in quite a few front rows during the Fall ’14 shows [Chanel, Givenchy, Stella McCartney, and Calvin Klein, to name a few]. What was it like watching fashion from the sidelines as opposed to walking down the runway?
I’ve always loved fashion and, of course, enjoyed my experiences walking on runways, but I love watching the shows as well! Now I understand more why it’s such a big deal for the industry, and why people work so hard before and during fashion weeks. It’s interesting to see the same things from a different angle.

Are there any designers whom you admire or credit for your success?
I cannot thank Phillip Lim enough for bringing me to the stage I’m at right now. He also made a special dress for my movie premiere in Japan last summer. There are a few more designers who I have strong relationships with, as more than just a model. I will always remember how they appreciated me at the beginning of my career, and I would love to repay them as an actress somehow if I can.

Do your fans miss that signature bowl haircut you sported a few years ago?
I hear that a lot and really appreciate it, but I don’t plan to return to that haircut at the moment. I’m enjoying my new look!

In general, how do you unwind?
When I feel stressed, I [do] karaoke and sing for hours!

Tao Okamoto 15 debuts tonight (7 to 10:30 p.m.) at Hudson Studios, 601 West 26th St., 13th floor, and will be on view to the public through Friday, May 9.

Photos: Tim Richardson; Victor Demarchelier

It’s A Family Affair


Is there room for two photographers in one family? If that family is the Demarchelier one, well, sure. Victor D.—Patrick’s son—has been quietly racking up credits (and a show, back in March, at New York’s Clic Gallery) for a few years now, but his latest project sounds like it could be a game-changer: a collaborative shoot with his father. Both Demarcheliers are working on the November issue of Vogue Brasil, which is traditionally devoted to Rio. Sources say Victor flew down to shoot two editorials in the Brazilian city recently, and is now back in New York shooting a third editorial and the cover in the company of his father, styled by Vogue Brasil fashion director Giovanni Frasson and starring the very lovely Isabeli Fontana (pictured, on set). It will be the first published collaboration between the two—occasion enough for Fontana to fly out a little late to the Paris shows.

Chez Demarchelier, It’s Like Father, Like Son


You might expect that Victor Demarchelier—son of Patrick—was born with a camera in his hand. But Demarchelier fils, whose debut photo show, Creating Images, is now up at New York’s Clic Gallery, insists the urge to shoot came later—after a bout with economics, to be precise. Having spent his collegiate years studying finance and studio art (primarily printmaking) at Vassar, Demarchelier only began taking photos after he returned to his native city post-graduation. He’s since lensed for the likes of Paris Vogue and Interview.

“I like to look at paintings mainly, like those of Francis Bacon. Or Mapplethorpe, Newton, and Penn,” says Demarchelier, who assisted his father in the studio before breaking out on his own. An affection for fashion’s old masters is readily apparent in Demarchelier’s work, which is predominantly in black-and-white and printed on silver gelatin or platinum prints for an aged quality. “I like when they’re rough,” Demarchelier says of his images, which he retouches only minimally. “I don’t always spot them; that way they’re more like a piece of art. The accidents can be beautiful, too.” Of course, beautiful subjects don’t hurt, either. There are plenty in the Clic show, including several of his girlfriend Caroline Trentini.

And as for that famous father? He’s now a studio mate. The two work side by side in the elder’s Chelsea space. “We like to talk to each other while the other one is shooting. Sometimes we definitely get on each other’s nerves,” Demarchelier laughs. But, despite any studio tiffs, Demarchelier doesn’t feel much added pressure as a result of his last name. “It helps and it hurts at the same time,” he says. “But it’s nothing to be ashamed of. And not just because he’s my dad, but because he’s one of my favorite photographers.”

“Creating Images” runs through April 4 at Clic Gallery, 424 Broome St., NYC, (212) 219-8006,

Photo: Victor Demarchelier