Balmain released a sexy new campaign last month, starring Rihanna for their Spring/Summer 2014 print advertising campaign, with creative direction by Emmanuelle Alt's husband, Franck Durand. I love this quote by Olivier Rousteing describing his vision for the collection, "La femme Balmain n'est pas une victime, elle ose être ce qu'elle est." or in English, "The Balmain woman is not a victim, she dares to be what she is." Mais bien sûr. Regarding the choice of Rihanna, Rousteing stated, “When the woman that inspires you wears your creations, your vision feels complete. Not compromising, fresh, modern, the icon of my generation, Rihanna embodies my vision of Balmain in this new campaign. In front of the camera, she makes you feel like she is the only girl in the world.” The creative team for the campaign also boasts photographers Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin and Rihanna's own stylist, Mel Ottenberg. The IWTBAA editorial team was inspired to comment on the images as follows… Also be sure to view the videos from behind the scenes during the filming for the Balmain campaign.
I’m a huge Balmain lover but from the time when Christophe Decarnin was the designer. If I only could, I would own every little piece of his designs. I think that Olivier is a great designer, he has talent, but I don’t really feel his collections, I don’t see any character in them during shows. When Anja Rubik or Rihanna wears these clothes, they look incredible, maybe their personalities make them so awesome? I don’t know, but it would be hard to find the piece which I would love no matter what, like I love Decarnin’s designs. The campaign is very good, I love RiRi and it’s amazing how Balmain’s clothes underline her tattoos. My favorite photo is definitely the one in black and white pieces and with the top with deep décolletage (my favorite of her tattoos looks great here — the one under her breasts). Great model (or should I say personality?), great photographers, stylizations, production, and — without RiRi — decent clothes.
Well, hello beautiful! The pix are out there and they are major. Rihanna is the new face of Balmain and she’s just as hot as the brand itself, it’s the perfect pairing. “She’s powerful, she knows how to mix beauty, she’s boyish, she’s strong… she’s the new icon,” reflected the fashion house’s creative director Olivier Rousteing, who further mused that he created the collection around the Barbadian bad girl.
Aside from the French connection, why is IWTBAA talking about the Balmain S/S 2014 campaign with RiRi? The creative director was none other than Emmanuelle Alt’s husband, Franck Durand. And, it’s easy to connect Franck’s style to that of Emmanuelle. Shot by Vogue Paris favorites Inez and Vinoodh, it’s an unapologetic throwback to the 80s merging 90s.
For a girl who’s preternaturally attuned to her natural street style, thanks to her stylist Mel Ottenberg, Rihanna fronts the campaign in all the right pieces from denim to blown-out houndstooth. All looks heavy with gilt accessories but just right, nonetheless. Check it out, she’s sure to raise Balmain’s street cred. No doubt.
Helmut Newton likened working for fashion houses to being "a hired gun" — and Inez and Vinoodh continue to fire off strong images for major houses, the latest (greatest) being Balmain. Starring Rihanna, with creative direction by Atelier Franck Durand (Ms. Alt's husband), and styled by Rihanna's stylist Mel Ottenberg. So cool to see RiRi bring new energy to Balmain. The photos really show off the clothes and Rihanna in such a flattering way, relaxed and pulled together Parisian chic, so Vogue Paris! Pastels, gold, lace, patterns, and killer accessories scream ladylike and seductive! RiRi's gaze really pulls you in, Olivier creates the Balmain woman that women want to be and men want to….
Check out Helmut Newton A Gun for Hire published by Taschen.
Rihanna for Balmain images © 2013 Balmain. Rihanna and Olivier Rousteing photographs courtesy of instagram.com.