FOREVER YOUNG: Mastermind, the magazine created by fashion stylist Marie-Amélie Sauvé, has put together a photography exhibition celebrating youth, a theme of its fourth issue, which came out Sept. 3.
Housed at the Thaddaeus Ropac gallery in the Marais, “A Generation” features the work of three photographers — Jamie Hawkesworth, Charles Fréger and Raimond Wouda. It opens today and will run until Oct. 6.
“We wanted to put the spotlight on younger generations at school,” explained Sauvé at the opening night on Tuesday. “But also to highlight the differences within the same generation.”
“A Generation” showcases two photo series that were commissioned for the magazine. Fréger paid a visit to students at Gordonstoun school in Scotland (Prince Charles is an alumni) while Wouda visited elementary schools in the Netherlands.
“I had already done a similar series shot between 2003 and 2007,” said Wouda. “Within the same age group, I saw a really big difference shooting the same project 15 years later: before, the kids had all this energy and were running around all the time. Nowadays, all they do is stare at their phones.”
The exhibition featured a shot of teenagers at Sint-Nicolaaslyceum in Amsterdam, hanging out near their lockers. Most of them are wearing jeans. “Of course, there is a lot of fashion visible, but I’m not looking for that,” said Wouda. “I’m looking at how the teenagers behave. It’s an interesting time in a person’s life.”
Guests at the opening included Vincent Darré, Pierre Hardy and Etienne Deroeux. The evening was followed by a party at Maxim’s.
Also presented at the exhibition were pictures shot by Hawkesworth in Rio de Janeiro for the first issue of Mastermind. “I just really wanted to photograph all the kids on the beach,” said the photographer. “So we cast 15 kids and shot the whole thing in 40 minutes. It was really manic.”
The pictures blend fashion photography and documentary, a style trait Hawkesworth has made his signature. In 2016, for the “Disobedient Bodies” exhibition in collaboration with designer Jonathan Anderson at the Hepworth Wakefield, the photographer shot archival J.W. Anderson pieces on 140 local schoolchildren.
“Kids are obviously camera-conscious, but in a very naïve way,” he said. “A lot of honesty comes through.”
The photographer, who has photographed campaigns for Marni, Alexander McQueen and Loewe, has just come back from a two-month trip to Alaska. “I was traveling around, writing a bit, taking pictures. It’s a personal project, but it might turn into something more. It’s what I always do: I go someplace, and see what I come across.”