F A S H I O N
Rick Guidotti's groundbreaking photo essay, "Redefining Beauty," published
in the June 1998 issue of Life Magazine, is a tribute to the
uniqueness of people with albinism and a welcome contrast to the degrading
images of the condition so often perpetrated by other media producers.
Recognizing that people with albinism face many of the fears, myths,
and stereotypes associated with difference, Rick took it upon himself to
use his photography as a means by which to open minds as well as turn heads.
His experience of the fashion industry's narrow definition of beauty
prompted him to seek out nontraditional subjects who were striking in their
own right. He discovered that people with albinism could serve as
a metaphor for everyone in society who is made to feel excluded because they
possess unconventional characteristics. By celebrating the very thing
that makes people with albinism different, Rick felt he could encourage
the public to view differences in general more favorably.
The Life article, and the subsequent publication of his pictures in London-based Now Magazine, are just one facet of Rick's new endeavor. The project as a whole, which he calls, "Positive Exposure," entails a plan to shoot and catalogue a comprehensive collection of photographs of people with albinism from around the world to be displayed at international exhibitions and eventually published in a book. A documentary about the project was aired on City TV's "Oo La La," a Canadian program on art and pop culture which is shown in 64 countries. The Alliance of Genetic Support Groups also recognized "Positive Exposure"'s merits at its Art of Reporting awards ceremony. Rick has a Web site containing additional information and images beyond what is provided here.
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