Rei Kawakubo and Adrian Joffe built a cult love heart label; Alfred Stieglitz gave American modernism Georgia O’Keeffe; and Queen Elizabeth II rules a kingdom alongside Prince Phillip. However contrasting in creative output, there’s no questioning that these prolific partnerships give new meaning to the term ‘power couple’.

In the latest edition in her series exploring groundbreaking personalities (see Visionary Women, Life as a Visitor and Pioneers of the Possible) Angella Nazarian manages to weave the lifestyles of contrary couples with the thread of an unmatched bond between two human beings in her new tome, Creative Couples: Collaborations That Changed History.

Creative Couples, Collaborations that changed History

Nazarian, while writing the predecessors to this book, discovered that many of the significant innovations of the 20th century came through the joint efforts of men and women (or otherwise) working synergistically. This cultural shift over the last century towards greater participation by women has created a much needed sense of urgency to discuss the ways in which men are potential allies and supporters of creative growth.

‘I wanted to better comprehend the underlying factors of two people coming together — as a couple, as well as partners in work — and to examine how personal relationships affect a couple’s working relationship,’ says Nazarian.

With this in mind, Nazarian has compiled a group of 15 couples that have operated as a joint force in each other’s lives and the world at large. The book design is as bold as the love stories inside, with the front cover featuring a pop art image of Charles and Ray Eames, just one of the included couples with a love story as colourful as their shared aesthetic.

Each of the pairings have their own unique relationship characteristics and ensuing dynamics; but there’s not just one magic formula that fits all partnerships. Some would even say there’s no fate worse than dating an artist. But with Nazarian’s deep-dive into each of her couples, it’s clear that great power comes in two halves. §