Who What Wear Podcast: Wes Gordon


On top of all these day-to-day responsibilities, you recently released a fashion photography book called Colormania, and the photos were captured during COVID via Zoom. Tell me about this. How did it turn into a book?

It was really spearheaded by Jodie Chan, who heads up our marketing and communications at [Carolina] Herrera, during lockdown—this idea of, How do you continue to be a brand in a moment where you’re stopped? How do you continue to storytell and communicate and captivate and create beauty when things have ground to a halt, when you can’t go to the office and you certainly can’t do a fashion show? All creatives were in the same boat.

We reached out to Elizaveta [Porodina], who is a photographer whose work we admired. I found very poignant and heartbreaking the idea of professional dancers around the world, who train their whole lives for the moment to be in a company and to be a professional dancer. [They have] this very exclusive opportunity, this moment in time, suddenly to be told that “We’re closed. No one’s in the theater. You can’t come to work.” Their bodies are these finely tuned machines. There’s just a window of their lives that they can actually perform at that level.

We reached out to Elizaveta [Porodina] about doing a shoot focused on dancers who were at home. We did it around the world. There was a dancer in Sydney, in Paris, in New York. We invited each of them to pick out something they liked from our last collection. We sent it in a box, and then Elizaveta art-directed over Zoom and captured the images through Zoom. [We] just created something really beautiful that we all fell in love with. I thought the results were really poetic.

That one shoot led to five more shoots that we did over the next couple of years, the last several of which were not over Zoom. The world was back by then. What drew me most to her work was the painterly way that she approaches photography. It looks like brushstrokes of color. For a house that has color at its core, her work felt really relevant.



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