When I noticed Eurochic Israeli fashion designer Anya Fleet among the women featured in Victor Ben Tzvi’s stark black and white photos about Israeli women in modern culture, I had to take a second look.
Victor Ben Tzvi shoots black and white film, but more so, he is all about using his photography to tell a story about society. Like such creative Israeli photographers like Adi Nes and Igor Kruter he uses the camera to capture something that tells us all about the modern world in which he lives.
“I’m looking for the lines between authentic/real almost documentary, into the idealistic, narratives, almost allegoric… that is really the unique place for pure photographic expression, the realism of capture (and the motives that we want in terms of artistic merit,” he said.
Now, why am I featuring this photographer in a blog about Israeli fashion, you may ask? What exactly does he have to do with fashion at all? (Besides the fact he used Anya Fleet in one of his photos.)
Well, we all know the camera is quite important to the fashion world in terms of taking pictures of models and clothes. That’s why I was especially moved by his latest collection–a work in progress entitled Israeli Women, a photo-poem about women in modern culture.
It’s quite interesting to see who he chose to photograph and wear, how they stand, what they do, and what they wear.
Victor describes it as “a gaze into the feminine essence through photographic personages, between authenticity and allegory, reflecting on epic narratives, current dispositions, desires, cliches, and missing cultural links.”
Among the women, an architect, a singer, and a motion picture still photographer.
And of course, there are the ones who are not defined by status. The smoker, the shopper, the sleeper, and the beach goer.
Victor dresses them in black or white to play off the shadows and many are seen in see through tanks or wispy dresses. And not surprisingly, this is what much of the style has come to be in Israel, especially in the hottest summer months when some of us would rather walk around naked. There’s also a sense of vulnerability in their eyes, in their barely there clothes, in their facial expressions.