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PRINT March 1997

FLASH TRACK: CRAIG McDEAN PHOTOGRAPHS JIL SANDER

Style-making images happen when visionary design meets innovative photography. Each month in this series, Artforum presents a collaboration between a photographer and a designer who share a special affinity.

WITH THE CLOTHES reduced to a tease of cashmere at the nape of the model’s neck, Craig McDean gives us a metaphor for Jil Sander’s style as a fashion innovator. The dichotomy of controlled strands of hair and flamelike ends mirrors the German designer’s insistence on “cleanness” or sartorial perfection that erupts in sheer extravagance: the plain white dress that could be brushed cotton and turns out to be sinfully smooth leather; the coat that looks like nothing, but, as its material took some Italian fabric mill months to develop, will cost a fortune.

The 32-year-old McDean, who assisted London-based photographer Nick Knight for two years before venturing out on his own, still works sporadically for the British youth culture magazine i-D, but his meticulously printed pictures have begun to appear with regularity in Harper’s Bazaar, W magazine, and various European editions of Vogue. His

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