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Beauty will save the world.
No wonder it is what allegedly caused a war between Sparta and Athens.

CindyCrawford_cover reprint

It is only when you meet a genuine beauty, that you fully understand those statements.
I met one last week, at the V&A. Not in the plaster court, but in the lecture theatre.
The coolest museum in the world was the location for the launch of Cindy Crawford’s book BECOMING. And she was there. The photography-led book is the chronicle of the American icon and supermodel, where she shares stories of her professional and personal evolution, accompanied by her most iconic images, as well as never-before-published photographs from her personal archive. One of the best coffee-table books that uber cool publisher Rizzoli has released in the last few years. Since I bought the book, I browse few pages a day, like a good drink to sip slowly. The selection is stunning.

Cindy descending stairs in a black maillot and sheer veil © Helmut Newton

I was a child in the 90s and whenever I was going through fashion magazines I was thinking that the women featured on those pages were some sort of godess. These days they look a lot like clotheshorses.

My fashion-eureka moment was a Versace campaign, shot by Richard Avedon. The picture was displayed in the shop window of a boutique few doors from home, in a big poster. They were selling Versace. Now those walls host a cafeteria. All I know is that I wanted the clothes those girls were wearing. Those candy coloured clothes, those beautiful women with tanned legs who probably echoed Barbie very vividly, were the pivotal moment when I fell in love with clothes. And probably with beauty tout court.

supermodels-versace-campaign-richard-avedon

Versace campaign Richard Avedon, sometime in the 90’s

Cindy was always my favourite. Today we would call it a girl crush.
On my birthday I discovered she was launching her book, and presenting in London. I had to be there. And I did. I sat in the front row, spoke to her, she signed my book, and we exchanged few words. I am not normally quite like this; I am not usually fascinated by famous people.

©Gilles Bensimon

Cindy with son, Presley ©Gilles Bensimon

During the talk, hosted by Claudia Croft of Style of the Sunday Times, she offered a genuine and sincere look back over her career and life; clearly filled with joy, love but also the devastating early loss of her brother, Jeff, and her parents’ subsequent divorce only a few years later. When asked what beauty is for her, she said something simple and truthful: “Beauty is someone who is passionate about something and is confident”. I will take it with me.

Once at home I felt the urge to watch the video of Freedom by George Michael and Girl Panic of Duran Duran. The 90’s weren’t bad at all.

BECOMING

By Cindy Crawford

With Katherine O’Leary

Hardcover / 8.5” x 11” / 224 pages / 150 colour and B&W illustrations

£35.00 U.K. Rizzoli New York / ISBN: 978-0-8478-4619-1 Release date: Sept 2015

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