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Who is Todd Hido, the artist behind the latest Bottega Veneta campaign?

 

For its spring-summer 2017 campaign, the house of Bottega Veneta called upon the American photographer Todd Hido. The perfect opportunity for Numéro to look back at the oeuvre and career of this America-enthusiast and his prolific career.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A MAN OF AMERICA’S RESIDENTIAL NEIGHBOURHOODS AND DESSERTED HIGHWAYS

 

A pure product of Americana, Todd Hido was born in 1968 in Kent, a small city in West Ohio. Throughout a comfortably uneventful childhood he developed a keen sense of observation while skateboarding and then BMXing around town. Wandering through residential neighbourhoods, along deserted roads and paths Hido multiplied his emotion-charged clichés revealing an America as seen from the inside. What began as a passion led him to Boston and then Oakland where he excelled in his studies and obtained an MFA at the California College of Arts and Crafts in 1996. 

His is a haunting gaze at the desolate houses rising up in the midst of stretches of deserted land like architectural spectres. A mix of strangeness and melancholia that’s become his signature. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AN INTIMATE PORTRAIT OF THE USA

 

Far from the shouting colours so often used to depict America, Todd Hido’s work is witness to an intimate and unvarnished ambition. Deconstructed, the glorious American myth is replaced by a vision of an empty and bleak country, stamped with shards of harsh lighting. That said there’s no lack of tenderness as the photographer exposes the landscapes of his childhood like intimate reminiscences, while revealing the isolation of city outskirts. This was the subject of his series entitled House Hunting presented at the Stephen Wirtz Gallery in San Francisco in 1998. His is a haunting gaze at the desolate houses rising up in the midst of stretches of deserted land like architectural spectres. A mix of strangeness and melancholia that’s become his signature. 

Another important aspect of his work is embodied by fragile and iconic characters like when he immortalised prostitutes in hotel rooms in his series Between the Two (2008) and Fragmented Narratives (2012

Anonymous portrait by Todd Hido

 

A MYSTERIOUS CINEMATOGRAPHIC AESTHETIC

 

It’s hard not to think to be reminded of road movies, that cinematographic genre whose main thread is snaking concrete, when you look at Todd Hido’s shots. Once he reached adulthood and swapped his BMX for a car he continued to explore the roadways and maintained this notion of perpetual movement that literally brings his work to life. The photographer nourishes himself on movies every day, admitting the TV is always on in his house ensuring constant inspiration and the capturing of infinite details. He openly acknowledges the impact of David Lynch and Alfred Hitchcock on his work and presents his photos like film scripts bursting with colour and light. Another important aspect of his work is embodied by fragile and iconic characters like when he immortalised prostitutes in hotel rooms in his series Between the Two (2008) and Fragmented Narratives (2012).

Seduced by his sense of delicacy and intuition, the artistic director at Bottega Veneta, Tomas Mayer invited him to photograph the spring-summer 2017 campaign

Making-of the Bottega Veneta spring-summer 2017 campaign

AN ORIGINAL COLLABORATION WITH BOTTEGA VENETA

 

Barely a year goes by without Hido exhibiting a series. Today his photographs hang in the permanent collections at the Guggenheim and the Whitney Museum of Arts in New York, and as well as his photographic projects he is professor at the California College of Arts where he himself studied. He’s starting 2017 with his first ever collaboration with a fashion house, just after exhibiting his Intimate Distance collection at the Galerie Particulière in Paris at the end of 2016. Seduced by his sense of delicacy and intuition, the artistic director at Bottega Veneta, Tomas Mayer invited him to photograph the spring-summer 2017 campaign featuring the actress Lauren Hutton. Richer than ever Todd Hildo’s career seems to be just beginning… at the tender age of 48. 

 

Discover Bottega Veneta printemps-été 2017 runway show

By Marion Ottaviani

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