IWTBAA Love Note: Anastasia Barbieri
By Paul Kolyer
Anastasia Barbieri, that name, so chic. A Russian/Italian countess or a prima ballerina? I was intrigued of course, the mastheads; redactrice at large for Vogue Paris, fashion director for Vogue Hommes International. I remember a first glimpse, in a photo when Carine Roitfeld took over Vogue Paris! Halcyon days! The chic French brunettes, and the blonde (also a fave) Julia von Boehm. Anastasia's personal style is relaxed and simple, but always well-tailored. So different from the flashy editors but not monastic black either. Slim men's suits in neutrals, unbuttoned blouses, and Chloé-esque day dressing.
Anastasia is a poetic realist, her work is mostly single girls or boys in relaxed offhand moments where their personalities shine through. Casual and real, they are caught in private thoughts and personal rituals. The subject forgets you're watching and doesn't pose for you, they are lost in the day to day and just happen to look amazing, for themselves, a personal style, no fashion victims here.
I shunned men's fashion magazines for quite a while and only recently took to Vogue Hommes when Carine, Emmanuelle, and Anastasia began styling for it. They contrasted and complemented each other in Vogue Paris and Vogue Hommes in a similar way, their men were totally their own like the girls. As I look at Vogue Hommes Spring/Summer 2010 with Emmanuelle's fantastic Kate Moss in black-and-white by Mario Sorrenti on the cover, the styling is classic for each editor. Kate mostly nude on a beautiful beach by Sorrenti and Alt, and a David Sims photo shoot with Alt's model styled like a modern day Elvis. Carine is all decadent with lounging boys, torsos exposed, fallen on luxe pillows and fabrics, like Rudolf Nureyev. The "virtuoso bodies" by Demarchelier. Anastasia styles a model who looks like Basquiat in the latest menswear, so effortless and put together, I really feel like it's Jean-Michel, as he urinates against a wall in a Calvin Klein jacket. She knows how women want to see men look, real and masculine, accessible and sexy. They make it seem easy and and don't try too hard yet look amazing, it's hard to do!
In the latest issue of Vogue Hommes, Anastasia Barbieri styles beautiful photos by Jeff Burton. She just worked with him on the Cerruti 1881 S/S 2014 campaign. For the spread "Le Damné" or "The Damned," Burton's photos are quiet, subtle and subdued with naturalistically lit interiors. Again a single model, in his own ambience, as we watch he breathes for some other air, not for us....
"a vague melancholy, like invisible scent,
in these rooms, a lover was here.
not now, in the past, from day to night waiting for the future,
doomed to remember.
a mirror to see her approaching, the mirror was here, and will be again.
faint movement in the air, is someone there?
should we dress for dinner? i'll wait, i know you're coming, never today.
then tomorrow arrives with the sun through a window and always fades
while I wait here alone inside myself, only the damned remain."
Editorial images courtesy of i-dmagazine.com. All Rights Reserved.