Following a list of exceptional artists like Yorgos Lanthimos, Paige Powell or Harmony Korine, New York street photographer Bruce Gilden is the latest photographer to collaborate with Gucci and Alessandro Michele on an art book. Titled Beaten & Blown by the Wind, the Magnum-signed photographer captures the Italian house’s Pre-Fall 2020 collection in Rome like no other.
Known for his snapshot-style photography, Bruce Gilden is one of the most renowned street photographers in the scene. He signed to prestigious Magnum agency back in 1998, and has since then worked on dozens of projects for various publications and brands. He’s portrayed people living on the outskirts of society, marginalized collectives, as well as the buzzing streets of cities like New York. “Bruce is a beautiful person with a poetic gaze on humanity,” says Alessandro Michele. “We share the same passion for faces and an obsession with expressions, personalities and looks. I am a great collector of portraits because the human figure is central to me. Working with a photographer means seeing through someone else’s eyes and it was wonderful to see through Bruce’s eyes. I felt like I was looking at things under a microscope in a science laboratory.”

For this art book, Gilden travelled to Rome to portray “in unforgiving close-up, and lit by harsh flash” some of its citizens, models wearing Gucci’s Pre-Fall 2020 collection, as well as the city’s majestic statues and buildings – all in high contrast black and white. “I had never made a book in this way before, which I viewed as a photographic challenge, and the end result is a truly creative collaboration with Alessandro Michele,” says the photographer. “Having Rome as the backdrop was great, the city really inspires me – the beauty of the architecture and its age and watching how the Roman people move around their unique surroundings, as well as discovering the statues in the park high above Rome that mix with beautiful clouds, and the panorama of the city below… it all lent itself for some good pictures.”
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