Johannesburg-based photographer, Aart Verrips has captured the attention of the South African fashion scene, while making a global and digital impact. “I want to step outside of the conforms of identity, race, and sex,” Verrips says. He is showcasing the authenticity of South Africans.
Aart Verrips is not afraid of anything. He’s always looking for something daring, something new, something controversial. It’s not for the act of provocation or the likes of it. It is for something deeper.
Verrips comments on his choice of profession: “I love fashion photography because you can create another world in a single image; you can make the impossible possible”. This idea permeated his first solo exhibition at the Hazard Gallery, Johannesburg, which focused on questions of male beauty, its seductive variations and the endless pursuit of perfection.
“Creating new standards for South African fashion helps me a lot with my identity as a gay male,” he says. “The most key thing in my career is collaboration,” …. “You learn a lot about yourself, a lot about how you need to treat people.”
The series Geology shows these qualities of Aart’s photography. Inspired by the dummies in the fields, his images have an eccentric and somehow eerie feeling. This injects the right dose of mystery into what could have been usual fashion photos. However, beneath the surface, these pictures express the need to escape the noise and pressure of city life, in order to be in the great outdoors.
The photos are part of a lookbook shoot (a lookbook shows the latest collection of a designer). Verrips is a sought-after fashion photographer, his clients include Adidas, H&M, Levi’s, Burberry and others.