Helmut Lang, creatively directed by Mark Howard Thomas, has a history of producing documentary and ethnography style campaigns. They exist on a fine line between editorial and gallery, in the most beautiful of ways.
Although the work has usually existed in black and white, Helmut Lang’s Fall 2019 campaign masterfully blends red, white and blue to create a campaign that has patriotic references, while being nothing short of cinematic.
Lensed by Julien Martinez Leclerc, the campaign features a diverse cast including Cole Mohr, Heejung Park, Naki Depass, Noah Carlos, Remington Williams, Rio Thake, Romina Lanaro, and Valerija Kelava. The ensemble is captured in high contrast, usually in strong and declaratory poses. Maybe it’s the high contrast, or the red bold ‘Helmut Lang’ lettering, but something about the campaign resonates as a movie poster. Our models feel like a cast of characters. Their camera perspectives and compositions are hyper-dramatized—as if they’re engaging in one of those acting exercises where you’re told to embody a word—words like freedom, courage and peace.
A diverse cast of characters is a rarity in many campaigns. Helmut Lang’s cast may be the melting pot that is America, or the melting pot that America should be. This campaign may provide the visuals for a story that’s yet to be written, or a story that unfolds every day. Nonetheless, the line that Helmut Lang walks should should be tread by all.
Helmut Lang Creative Director | Mark Howard Thomas Photographer | Julien Martinez Leclerc Models | Cole Mohr, Heejung Park, Naki Depass, Noah Carlos, Remington Williams, Rio Thake, Romina Lanaro, & Valerija Kelava Stylist | Carlos Nazario Hair | Holli Smith Makeup | Susie Sobol