Inge Grognard, Makeup 1989-2005 is a new book from the young publishing house Zegris Books that showcases the early career work of make-up’s great iconoclast. Inge Grognard’s career launched in the mid-1980s when she became the make-up artist for the Antwerp Six, including Dries Van Noten and Ann Demeulemeester, as well as her childhood friend Martin Margiela.
Inge Grognard make-up explored
Since then, Grognard has worked with Balenciaga, Haider Ackermann, Hood By Air, Vetements and more; but the new beauty book primarily focuses on her work in the Antwerp fashion scene of the late 1980s to the early 2000s, where she pioneered her signature subversive, do-it-yourself style.
Images show models with a bold painted-on unibrow, or deliberately misapplied mascara, or blanched, monochromatic features. The results are captivating and also challenging; they pose philosophical questions about our perceptions of beauty as much as they titillate our aesthetic sensibilities.
As Olivier Zahm, co-founder of Purple magazine, writes in his introduction for the book: ‘Grognard’s beauty revolution is essentially feminist. She uses make-up as an artistic gesture, an intimate revolt, one that allows each woman to reclaim her beauty, her inner turmoil, her hidden conflicts, her fragility and to reach beyond the masculine imperative of seduction.’
He continues, ‘Her work marked both a brutal break with traditional beauty conventions and a leap into the future with an aesthetic that is still defining the beauty of tomorrow.’
Indeed, as Grognard’s recent work with Balenciaga, in particular, has shown, she is still one of the most innovative forces in the industry, constantly reconfiguring our definitions of beauty.
Inge Grognard, Makeup 1989–2005, £20, zegris.media (opens in new tab)
Mary Cleary is the Beauty & Grooming Editor of Wallpaper*. Having been with the brand since 2017, she became an editor in February 2020 with the launch of the brand’s new beauty & grooming channel. Her work seeks to offer a new perspective on beauty, focusing on the pioneering personalities, product designs, and transformative trends within the industry.
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