A Decade of Kate Moss
Photographers Share Their Favorite ’90s Images of Miss Moss
On August 31st, by Steff Yotka, photograph by Arthur Elgot, via Vogue
"My favorite photo that I took of Kate Moss in the nineties is the one of her with the elephant, holding its trunk, in Nepal. It’s my favorite of her because when I took the picture the only people around were Kate, the elephant, the elephant trainer, and myself. Everyone else had gone to the beach so we kind of snuck away and did this quickly. Some of my favorite photos are the ones that I take during the downtime on set."
Kate Moss’s origin story is well known by now: Discovered at JFK, the Croydon teen got her first break when alt British magazine The Face published a series of photos of her by Corinne Day in 1990. Day caught Moss’s young, freckled face mid-laugh on the magazine’s cover; inside, in a spread called “The 3rd Summer of Love,” she frolics nude on a beach, covered only by a sun hat. At 5-foot-7, Moss wasn’t model tall, and her teeth were funny, but she was an instant sensation anyway. From there she landed international Vogue covers and editorials, portrait sessions with the likes of Irving Penn and Richard Avedon, endorsements by influential designers including John Galliano and Marc Jacobs, and an enduring contract with Calvin Klein. The word waif was chosen for her slight, girlish look, and waves of sylphlike models came up behind her.
But now, as then, there’s only one Kate. Unlike many of her peers, Moss never wanted a side job as an actress or a social media star. (Yes, she has done a bang-up job making clothes with Topshop.) She transcended fashion nonetheless, having been immortalized in paintings by Lucian Freud and Chuck Close, and in an 18-karat gold sculpture by the artist Marc Quinn, the largest work in solid gold since the days of the ancient Egyptians.
Here, in honor of her early-nineties beginnings, an era that we’re celebrating as we launch Vogue Runway, eight of the decade’s busiest photographers share their favorite Kate pictures with us. As Craig McDean puts it, even then “you knew she was going to go on to be a phenom.” See all the original article and all of the photos here.