Sat | Mar 23, 2019

Saint Internat’l models featured in Balenciaga’s new coffee table book

Published:Sunday | February 10, 2019 | 12:17 AM

Saint International models made history as they were showcased in the coffee table book Balenciaga: Winter 18 that chronicles backstage, rehearsals, and runway action of Balenciaga Fall/Winter 2018 show held last year March in Paris.

The book features eight Saint models – Christine Willis, Kimali Morgan, Naki Depass, Barbra-Lee Grant, Elecia Gordon, Jannel Duncan, Jodanne Wellington, and Aakesh Henderson – who glided down the catwalk for the Balenciaga show and who were booked exclusively by Saint CEO and founder Deiwght Peters.

This is the first time that such a number of Jamaican or Caribbean models appeared on a major luxury label’s runway.

This is a proud milestone indeed for the 19-year-old Saint International model agency and an achievement not the least bit lost on Peters.

“I was literally emotional at the sight of eight Jamaican models from Saint walking for one of the world’s biggest brands, and it’s a significant moment. I remain appreciative of our models, some of whom were travelling to Paris for the first time. It was a spectacular experience all around and a major marker for Brand Jamaica and Saint, too,” Peters Arts and Education.

With the ‘Balenciaga 8’ as Peters christened his model stars now featured in living colour for the new glossy tome, Saint’s rich history with Balenciaga remains alive and well as among them, Grant, Willis, Morgan, Depass, Duncan, and Gordon have appeared in global advertising and e-commerce campaigns for the brand within the last two years.

The 304-page Balenciaga: Winter 18 coffee table book in which the Jamaican Saint stars are extensively pictured is published by the New York-based imprint Rizzoli, regarded as the premier publisher of illustrated books on fashion, interior design, art, architecture, and photography. Founded in 1917, Balenciaga has distinguished itself for designs of daring innovation, technical artistry, and pure forms.

What sets Balenciaga’s new book apart, however, is not just its exclusivity and photos, Dufort and Carlotti were the only guests allowed in the showroom and backstage to see the making of the collection – but the experimental process with which the book was made. Unlike standard photo books, this one is printed using two rarely used neon inks in addition to CMYK colours.

The book is described by its publishers as “a visual journey through Balenciaga’s Winter 18 ready-to-wear collection, with never-before-shown images and behind-the-scenes photographs selected by the designer, Gvasalia himself”.

The book went on sale internationally on February 5 and on Balenciaga’s e-commerce platform. The book is written by the Paris-based fashion brand’s artistic director, Demna Gvasalia, and jointly photographed by Pierre-Ange Carlotti and Johnny Dufort.