Clearly, Riccardo Tisci wants us to think. After making waves and winning praise for casting Lea T., a transexual model, in his last few campaigns for Givenchy, the designer has asked an albino model named Stephen Thompson to front his ads for spring summer 2011.
As with Lea T, Tisci is trying to send a message with Thompson’s otherness. Mert Alas and Marcus Piggot shot the ads, and Thompson will appear alongside Daphne Groeneveld, Iris Strubegger and Mariacarla Boscono. Thompson is about as pale as pale gets, but in the photos he’s naked, all the models get shot individually, washed out to near-paper whiteness, and then their images are overlapped. It’s experimental and a little more forward thinking than mos high-end fashion ads, to be sure, and Tisci told WWD that the images are exactly what he wanted to see.
During an exclusive preview, Tisci explained that he’s long admired albino people, reflected in the pale flesh tones that are recurrent in his fashions. “They’re very near my world,” he enthused.
Considering, of course, that Thompson used to be represented by the now defunct New York branch of the Ugly modeling agency, we don’t know how close they could be. But so long as Tisci keeps serving up thought-provoking ads like this, we’re not complaining.