Givenchy's Brilliant Riccardo Tisci Casts Stephen Thompson for Sp 2011 Campaign

Daphne Groenveld & Stephen Thompson, Givenchy S/S 2011Note: we update Jan. 3 with additional images from the Givenchy campaign.

Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci continues his mood of exoticism at Givenchy, moving from casting Lea T in the Fall 2010 campaign to albino male model Stephen Thompson for his Spring/Summer 2011 campaign.  Shot by Mert & Marcus in stark grayscale with Daphne Groeneveld, Iris Strubber and Mariacarla Boscono, Tisci is expected to further inspire the fashion industry to push its boundaries in embracing uniqueness.



Apollo, 1988 by Robert MapplethorpeThe Givenchy campaign is inspired by Robert Mapplethorpe’s ‘Apollo’.

In Greek and Roman mythoogy, Apollo was the son of Zeus, and god of light, purity and the sun. He was considered as the ideal of manly beauty.

As the patron of Delphi, Apollo was the prophetic deity of the Delphic Oracle and leader of the Muses, the goddesses who inspired the creation of literature and the arts.

More Gods and Goddesses

Gods and goddesses are the focus of Karl Lagerfeld’s 2011 Pirelli Calendar.

Kanye West pays homage to the Phoenic, a mythical bird that existed only one at a time, and was worshipped as a sign of enlightment and rebirth. (Note: the phoenix is is very controversial in America and considered to be associated with a new world order, and therefore despised by right-wingers.)

Conceptually, this proliferation of gods and goddesses suggests to me something more than an emphasis on individuality and albino models.

There is no doubt that both fashion and society at large are exploring new concepts of gender, what it means to be male and female.

Albino model Stephen-Thompson by Lyndsy WelgosThe Meaning of Male and Female

All social indicators that I know of pointed to an almost inevitable evolution of sexual identity in this direction, but I believe the momentum is also triggered by a sense among enlightened thinkers that the world has an awesome set of problems on its hands, and we must change our thinking in our relationship to each other and our relationship with nature.

Much of the world has a serious disrespect for the traditional male, Marlborough man approach to dominating nature with our drill baby drill mentality. The Vatican is losing respect right along with Wall Street, in many countries. I would like to write that the patriarchy is in decline, but I fear that it is moving aggressively to claim its full powers around the world and especially in America, where women are losing our rights.

Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci pays tribute to Apollo the enlightened man in the Spring 2011 ad campaign. Stephen Thompson is another of the new men, engaging with women and each other in new ways, that are spilling all over fashion.

Enter the Transversals

The popularity not only of Lea T but now of Andres Pejic puts the entire topic of gender in play in fashion. We are running a two-part feature on this topic, pulling together our editorials after last week’s NYTimes Style piece on Transversals.

Transversals | Lea T | Andrej Pejic | Modern Sexuality-1 Anne of Carversville

Andrej Pejic & Karolina Kurkove in Jean Paul Gaultier Sp 2011 ad campaignMore reading:

Karl Lagerfeld | Pirelli Calendar 2011 | The Female Divinities & Muses Are Feminists