The Master & the Girl: Erwin Olaf for Dutch Vogue
Erwin Olaf shot Dutch model Ymre Stiekema for October Issue of Vogue Netherlands. The feature called “The Master & the Girl” was inspired by classic dutch paintings and depicts Stiekema in similar garb with modern updates, like oversized headphones and a knit cap.
The central theme was Dutch paintings. Ymre has a classic Dutch face and we dressed her in traditional-like clothing that would have been worn by fishermen’s and farmers’ wives in the south of Holland. We focused on skin and reflections, from matte to shiny visages.
He and stylist Marije Goekoop put in modern elements, including an oversize knit hat and gleaming headphones. “We wanted to combine the past and present, because otherwise we’re simply imitating the past and that’s not an option [for me].
Styled by Marije Goekoop. Hair by Jean Luc Amarin. Make-up by Kathinka Gernant.
Interview with Vogue Italia:
[divider]About Erwin Olaf [/divider]
The dutch photographer (born in 1959) is one of the most esteemed representatives of the international photography scene thanks to his particularly recognizable style that has become his signature regardless of the variety of subjects he has worked with. He discovered photography during his studies in journalism in Utrecht having realized that documenting the reality did not interest him as much as recreating and conveying his inner world through images, a task at which he immediately succeeded, no matter what the objective of the work is: personal projects, advertising, fashion editorials or videos.
Olaf is also an ambiguous photographer. He is capable of capturing solitude, remorse and sadness in his sumptuous compositions, which are bathed in pastel tones and a distant Nordic light. His portraits of women evoke Rembrandt and Hopper, the elegant luxury of their style exuding a profound sentimentality.
Following the recent awarding of the Vermeer Prize to Olaf (the most important cultural recognition conferred by the Dutch government), this latest series further reiterates his status as one of the world’s most talented, prolific and influential artists. With ‘Berlin’, Olaf has again broken the boundaries of contemporary photographic practice. Creating powerful imagery that is at once historical and contemporary, with a tension-filled and ever-shifting narrative, the artist manages to entrance, perplex, confound and delight viewers.