LONDON — British photographer Matt Irwin — who worked for Dazed & Confused and shot Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, One Direction and Rita Ora — died on Thursday at age 36.
Thu Nguyen, a representative at Irwin’s photo agency, told WWD: “It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of British photographer Matt Irwin. Matt’s family and friends are heartbroken and have asked that their privacy be respected while they come to terms with their loss.”
The cause of death has not been disclosed. Born in Southport, U.K., Irwin demonstrated an interest in photography while still at school, at age 15, and his desire to become a fashion photographer brought him to London, where he later became in-house photographer at Dazed & Confused.
Jefferson Hack, founder of Dazed Media, said Irwin was an “inspirational individual and an iconic fashion and celebrity photographer. He was part of the first generation of digital natives who alongside his friend and fashion director Nicola Formichetti helped usher in a new bold new aesthetic and direction for Dazed and then pop culture in the late [Aughts].”
Diesel’s Formichetti said: “Matt was a pioneer in the London creative scene. His contagious sense of humor and enthusiasm lives on in his work. I will miss him terribly.”
Irwin shot for magazines such as Elle U.K., Vogue Russia, Vogue Japan and American Glamour.
He became known as a celebrity photographer, having shot the likes of Miley Cyrus, Taylor Swift, Nicki Minaj, Kylie Minogue, Rihanna and others.
Lady Gaga wrote: “Matt Irwin you were such a talent. I am devastated. The world will miss [you]. I will never forget this shoot together, it was magical.”
Ora posted two pictures with Irwin, and commented: “Matt Irwin, you were always smiling, I’m so lucky to [have] known you, and shooting so many fun things together. Rest in peace my friend, sending love and healing to the Irwin family.”
Georgia May Jagger recalled: “So much talent. You took my first ever picture. You were the first one to believe in me, I probably wouldn’t work in this industry if it wasn’t for the kindness you’ve shown me all these years. Made me laugh for hours. I always felt at home with you. My all time favorite.”
Minaj posted a picture on her Instagram account, with the words: “I just don’t want to believe he’s gone. He literally took my pics 3 months ago after I specifically requested him!!! Always made me so happy on set. Always so loving and sweet and optimistic. This is so surreal. He was just so unbelievably talented!!!! God bless his family. Rest in peace my love.”
Alexa Chung wrote: “Sorry to hear you left so soon. Will break out the summer shorts in your honor.” One Direction’s Niall Horan said: “Rest well Matt . Can’t believe [I’m] writing this. Incredible person. X.”