After the success of Christian Dior’s exhibition “Designer of Dreams” the photographic exhibition dedicated to the genius of Tim Walker and his fantastic creatures arrives at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.
What emerges from the exhibition is the multifaceted nature of this photographer, because to define only as a fashion photographer would perhaps be reductive. As Susanna Brown, curator of “Tim Walker: Wonderful Things” explained in an interview with Dazed: […]“I think for him the fashion industry and the magazines are like Renaissance art patrons that allow him to create the pictures his mind imagines and the dream worlds he wants to build in front of the camera. He’s used that metaphor before, the idea of fashion itself as a benefactor, as a patron to the artist, and I think it’s a very good metaphor.” […]
The majestic and flamboyant clothes are indeed only a part of Walker’s original eye, who remains first of all a dreamy photographer, able to introduce us into parallel universes made of surrealism and magic.
But Walker’s genius also lies in his ability to remain strongly interested in current events. The scenes and the atmosphere of the set widen the theme of the subjects on display, which are imbued with a narrative capable of outlining contemporary issues while being captured in a space that transcends reality.
Undoubtedly iconic are the portraits of Tilda Swinton, his ever-inspiring muse, as well as the nineteenth-century poet Edith Sitwell portrayed by Cecil Beaton, one of his favorite photographers, which inspired him for a shot with Tilda. There are also new shots inspired by some rooms of the V&A Museum, and others related to the themes that the fashion industry and society at large is currently facing: from the crisis of fast fashion to issues of waste, consumption and sustainability, from sexuality to the representation of diversity.
“You know he’s not a documentary photographer” clarifies Susanna Brown “but he is still engaged with the real world, beyond high fashion, or beyond couture.”
The exhibition will be open until march 8th 2020.
words Ludovica Mucci