Vogue Italia, Salpêtrière
A collaboration with director John Heyes for Vogue Italia.
Salpêtrière’ is based on a Parisian Asylum of the same name for ‘insane’ and ‘incurable’ women in late 19th century Paris. These women were methodically photographed under the direction of Jean-Martin Charcot; who was the leader in the ‘Invention of Hysteria’ and were required to portray their Hysterical ‘type’. It shows a ground breaking role photography had with psychiatry at the time. However failing to cooperate under his studies and lectures would result in transfer back to the chamber of incurables. Other treatments were performed on these women, including hypnosis and electrotherapy. Through manipulation these subjects had no choice but to comply. This project aims to showcase the strength and empowerment in women for not being seen as ‘sane’ or ‘normal’ rather than to trap and persecute. Working with dancer and choreographer Anna Engerstrom I wanted ‘Salpêtrière’ to show a natural expressive state and beauty through something horrifying, which has happened in the past. I wanted to recreate an environment emulating the asylum, while making it an area of mystery and allurement representing what could of been the true state of their minds, to be free.