Why is it again that we equate being stylish with being young and thin?
The photographs of Rankin's nine new muses will be unveiled on 11 February at the National Portrait Gallery. Rankin's model army consists of women of all ages, shapes and sizes, wearing designs by boldfaced names in British fashion like Vivienne Westwood, Giles Deacon, Matthew Williamson, Stella McCartney and more.
The images will be displayed as part of a tour running through the gallery alongside portraits of famous women of the past like Nell Gwynn, Mary Wollstonecraft and Elizabeth I, accompanied by a Vivienne Westwood soundtrack on the subject of power dressing.
Rankin's images are designed to provoke. "For us the key thing is broadening the imagery of fashion and beauty in the media, so that a wider respresentation is shown," explains Debra Bourne, one of the co-founders of All Walks Beyond the Catwalk (the others are model Erin O'Connor and fashion commentator Caryn Franklin. "Rankin's fashion portraits with the nine major designers are all about this, by placing them in the National Portrait Gallery and exploring the question: Is fashion the lens by which we evaluate identity?"
Tickets for the event, which will also feature a panel discussion (with guest experts like Elle's Lorraine Candy), fashion illustration master classes and an all-female DJ lineup, are free. The event will take place from 6-10 p.m. on 11 February. For more information, check out the National Portrait Gallery website.