Admiring women from behind

Observing the female form is something that plays an important role for a designer, but rather than front on, we are admiring the representation of women from behind. It is often forgotten, but the back is equally as important as designing the front of a gown.

 

Woman Bathing (La Toilette), 1891. Colour aquatint and drypoint.

The most important details can often be found on the back of a design, yet it is often overlooked. • Frank Horvat left an indelible mark on fashion photography, moving it outside of the studio, and seemingly catching the beauty found in fleeting moments.

Djerba, Tunisia, for British Harper's Bazaar, Bathing Suit (B), 1965.

The Art Deco illustrations of the 1920s drew attention to the elegance of the female back, with elongated necks glancing over soft shoulders

Modes et Manieres d’Aujourd’hui, 1920, plate 10 Towards the Dancing. Illustration by Robert Bonfils

“Her portrait of a model with her bare back to the camera refuses the sexualising gaze of advertising, instead tapping into something more classical, almost renaissance.”

Dazed Magazine 2016 📸

Renowned fashion photographer Jaques Henri Lartigue, portrayed the romance of French women and their beauty. After meeting his muse, Renée Perle, together they embarked on what Lartigue remembers as an “eternal vacation”, a dreamlike two-year holiday in the South of France, where he documented her riviera style and endlessly photogenic form.

Jacques Henri Lartigue, Rene Biarritz August 1930.

Harry Callahan’s wife and daughter acted as his main muses throughout his career, capturing the simple beauty of everyday life and fleeting moments, as seen in this photograph.

Eleanor and Barbara, Chicago, 1954.

There is something very whimsical about observing figures only from the back...

Onésipe Aguado de las Marismas, Women Seen From The Back, 1862