Mario Testino’s “In Your Face” and “Royal Portraits” at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Carmen Kass by Mario Testino for Allure, September 2009. Image via fashiontography.net

Mario Testino is one of the world’s most sought-after and influential fashion photographers. Peru born but based in the UK, Testino has snapped infamous spreads for prominent fashion super magazines such as Vogue and Vanity Fair. His work features various international supermodels, celebrities, athletes, musicians, as well as frequently invites from the British Royal Family as their personal photographer. Brad Pitt, Nicole Kidman, Tom Brady, Anna Wintour, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mick Jagger, Madonna, Johnny Depp, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Aniston, Candance Swanepoel, Naomi Campbell, Alessandra Ambrosio are just few of the numerous big names that have posed in front of Testino.

This exhibition marks Testino’s first in the United States. “In Your Face” offers a provocative peak into some of the most recognized and exclusive subjects in the world of fame and glamour today. Known for elegance, style, irreverence and bold statements, Testino’s display outlines his career and contribution to the art of fashion photography. Located on the lower ground of the museum, the famed portraits are pinned to the walls that are painted deep peacock green, designed for the special occasion. Sexually charged, flashy yet full of aesthetic inventiveness and beauty, the exhibit itself felt like stepping into the pages of a life-sized Vogue spread.

In another room, Tesino’s “British Royal Portraits” showcase displays his accomplishment as the British Royal Family’s most trusted photographer, as well as close family friend. The exhibit opens with the iconic portrait of Princess Diana of Wales, taken in 1997, that gave her the signature tagline as “The People’s Princess.” Testino’s window to fame came perhaps out of the 1990s, most notably when Diana chose him to photograph her in Vanity Fair. Since then on, Testino has captured many moments in the lives of the family, including engagement portraits of William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Some other pieces include a few relaxed images of Princes William and Harry, some for the family’s Christmas cards, a quirky Queen Elizabeth II laughing to the camera, and portraits of Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall. Relaxed yet poised and full of elegance, Testino brings out the simple beauty of the world’s most-photographed family.

“In Your Face – now until February 3rd, 2013, located in Gund Gallery, LG31

“British Royal Portraits – now until June 16th, 2013, located in Gallery 169

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Avenue of the Arts
465 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115

Admission: Free for Emerson students with Emerson ID.

For more information, visit the MFA website at www.mfa.org.

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