Steven Klein is one of my favorite photographers and film directors. As all of you must know by now I am huge fan of the avant-garde and the experimental and Steven Klein exemplifies the kind of artist and film maker that I hope to be one day. In all of his works Mr. Klein manages to combine to both high and low art in order to create commercially viable product endorsements such as the video below which is a advertisement for Lady Gaga's Eau de Perfume Fame.
Mr. Klein's advertisement has been met with critical acclaim as John Farris from The Anarchist Review points out, "FAME is what Dali/Bunuel's Un Chien Andalou was to the late 1920's, a work of surrealism in which contemporary society is mirrored; a work rooted in the unconscious, and what is FAME actually saying to us in 2012? It is a depiction of the interior world of a celebrity and that fine line of a crack in the golden bowel of their existence. Everyone wants instant fame now and no one needs a particular talent, only a platform to appear. FAME, luxury, sexuality, death: all are the themes of the film, and isolation: for a Star lives a life confined to the work, to the constant publicity, the invasion of privacy, the lure of being Number One and the fear of being Number Two or even less. FAME is about numbers and how much do we get and how much do we give up to be famous. Klein has envisioned a world that could be out of science fiction. Visually he is stating that FAME is concurrent with Artifice. And that the mirror that a Star gazes into is a dark mirror, the void of the Soul, the void of Celebrityhood. Klein is working in the language of symbols. Gaga becomes a statue and thus an icon must be in a frozen status in order to exist, no room for aging, for that be organic matter. FAME rivets as a film and is alluring but the message underneath is chilling. Gaga in her final close up (both beautiful and compelling) is aghast and frightened at the world she has entered, the world of FAME."
Not only has Mr. Klein shot for Lady Gaga's perfume line but before that he was able to print work for campaigns launched by Calvin Klein, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, and, Nike. Additionally, Mr. Klein provides regular contributions American and Paris Vogue, i-D, Numero, W, and Arena. Also Mr. Klein has been fortunate enough to work with celebrities such as Madonna, Tom Ford, Brad Pitt and numerous others. He even photographed this...
Another project that Mr. Klein worked on with Madonna is called SecretProjectRevolution and below is it's manifesto.
Also here is the seventeen minute short film. I recommend watching it.
This film demonstrates yet another reason why I resonate with Mr. Klein's work. Within the film Madonna lays out her ideas for what it will take for us to live as a true global community we need to actively seek to break down labels that break us apart from each other. Mr. Klein's role in this message is seen through the lens of the manifesto seen above. Klein lays bare that his role as the maker of the film was to create situations in which the viewers unconscious prejudices and thoughts can be dissected and mulled over by the viewer themselves. For his intelligence and innovate ideas of film making, Mr. Steven Klein will always have a special place in my heart as a film maker.