Fashion mourns the loss of another great. At age 78, celebrated French photographer Patrick Demarchelier has passed away. The announcement came over Instagram this morning with a post that confirmed the loss. We are still yet to learn of the cause of death.
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Demarchelier's career-trajectory is well known. Having left France to follow a girlfriend to the US in the 70s, the photographer crafted a name for himself, cutting his teeth in the presence of contemporaries like Henri Cartier-Bresson while slowly absorbing himself in the realm of fashion. He famously shot for Vogue, with his reputation so intrinsically tied to Condé Nast that it warranted a mention in The Devil Wears Prada. Appearances in The September Issue and in Sex and the City film only added to the cult of personality that has become his legacy.
And what a legacy it is. We'd be remiss not to mention Demarchelier's intimate portraits of Princess Diana. Having admired his work in the pages of Vogue, Lady Di called upon him as her personal photographer, marking Demarchelier as the first non-British figure to become an official royal photographer. On top of this, his images of Madonna and the 90s supers are not something that we'll soon forget.
We can all agree that Demarchelier leaves in his wake a rich and indelible archive of work. But it would be dishonest not to touch on the radio silence of his final years. Allegations of sexual harassment levelled against Demarchelier as part of the #MeToo movement saw the photographer fall out of favour with the fashion world, with Condé Nast cutting ties altogether. Patrick Demarchelier has denied all the allegations.
Patrick Demarchelier is survived by, as the Instagram post states, "his wife Mia, his three sons Gustaf, Arthur, Victor and three grandchildren".