Any reference of the career of fashion photographer Corinne Day must make mention of two things. Firstly, her untimely death at the age of 48. The second is a picture of Kate Moss in her underwear.
Day bravely battled a slow-growing brain tumour, defying doctors’ expectations to live years longer than her prognosis before finally succumbing to the cancer in 2010. By that time she had enjoyed, and endured, a rollercoaster career that took off in tandem with Moss on the swelling waves of Cool Britannia and the re-emergence of London as a style capital. Day made others’ careers, but her own was somewhat derailed by a 1993 editorial of Moss and a particular shot in which the model looked too thin for some people’s taste. An outcry against “heroin chic” ensued – hardly Day’s fault that Kate was a few pies light, some may say – but Day didn’t spend too long in the wilderness before she was back at the forefront of fashion photography.
May the Circle Remain Unbroken takes an intimate look at the beginning of the self-taught artist’s journey into photography, in particular the adventures of a group of friends, models and muses who hung out at the Brewer Street flat that Day shared with long-term partner Mark Szaszy. Blurring the line between staged and candid, the youthful hijinks have been collected in a book, published by Mörel and edited by Szaszy. A selection of the works is also on show at Gimpel Fils in London until 23 November.