The Sexual Revolution
I explored the sexual revolution and the impact it has had on multiple generations. Over the course of this project I was highly inspired by the photography of Jean Clammer and his collaboration with Paco Rabanne on the series tilted ’Nues’. The exposed female form lavishly and sensually embellished by the aluminium and chain mail jewellery created by Rabanne inspired me to create my own version of this concept. Within loose knits and prints I exposed the body entwining them with chains, that the model seems to be breaking out of - representing the shift from a females confined life to the liberating breakthrough of the sexual revolution. Playing around with materials, colour and scale I began to work freely straight onto the body, constantly adding and removing to create something that truly defined the sexual revolution in my eyes.The further I delved into this historical movement the more I began to deconstruct the meanings and symbolism of the time, it was truly compelling to see how much you can pull a subject apart but still barely scratch the surface.
The publication caused an immediate sensation, both for its explicit nudity – the models wear little more than Rabanne’s elaborate aluminum and chainmail jewellery – but also because of Clemmer’s pioneering choice of black and Asian models. “It was very avant-garde at the time,” explains Hélène. “The models, their poses – accessories had never been presented this way.” That the raw beauty of Clemmer’s nudes still resonates in our sex-saturated times is testament to Clemmer’s artistic endurance.