Chris Moore is the undisputed king of catwalk photography. His six-decade career includes images from all the major catwalk shows, quite simply because he has seen and captured them all.
“Catwalking: Fashion Through the Lens of Chris Moore” catalogues reportage from the acclaimed fashion photographer with artistry and style. The exhibition is at The Bowes Museum in the North of England, which has hosted a variety of fashion exhibitions – most recently the “Style is Eternal” study of Yves Saint Laurent.
Alongside some 230 photographs, that reveal rare behind-the-scenes glimpses, are a number of significant couture creations loaned by major fashion houses and installed on a unique paper “Catwalk” designed by artist Steve Messam.
The fabulous display of fashion includes an elegantly decorated Chanel dress, and a ballooning scarlet creation by Comme des Garçons that also features on the cover of Catwalking, a book about the photographer’s career, with words by the award-winning fashion critic Alexander Fury. Iconography on the displays, an exhibition hand-list and stunning invitation celebrating the opening of the retrospective take design cues from the book of Moore’s work.
Focused on the fashion runway, the photographs have been selected from an archive of more than one million, and show the extraordinary depth, range and energy that typifies the freedom of fashion at legendary shows from design houses such as Balenciaga, Dior, John Galliano, Christopher Kane, Alexander McQueen, Yves Saint Laurent and Vivienne Westwood.
Between them, The Bowes Museum’s curator, Joanna Hashagen, and the photographer have captured insights into his early career across the major fashion cities of London, Milan, Paris and New York to the arrival of the supermodels. Every picture – and every garment – tells a story.
The most dramatic change over the years for Chris Moore, now 84, has been the move to digital photography. Having spent years dashing across cities with a roll of film in hand to be developed at a lab, the arrival of the digital age has been a game changer. Moore and partner Maxine Millar embraced the onset of digital photography with the founding of Catwalking.com, the first UK website dedicated to catwalk pictures.
A lookback at Chris Moore’s career, means witnessing the evolution of fashion, from film to digital, from the rebirth of haute couture to the rise of the modern day supermodel.
The Catwalking exhibition is at The Bowes Museum until the 6th of January 2019. www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk
Catwalking invitation on Bowston Black 2mm.
Print techniques: foil blocking, blind embossing, gilt edging.