You can’t talk about fashion photography without discussing Terry Richardson. The artist gained his reputation as a visionary early in his career, but it seems that these days, his photos have taken a back seat to his allegedly inappropriate interactions with his subjects.
Model Alliance spokeswoman and founder Sara Ziff told the Huffington Post, “[Richardson] will ask you to take your clothes off at the casting, and in some cases, give him sexual favors.” These allegations are nothing new; in 2010, several models came forward claiming that their interactions with Richardson were less than professional.
Although there has been no solid evidence that these allegations are true, other than the countless models that have come forward, hearsay can cause a lot of damage, yet Richardson remains unaffected.
“I was a shy kid,” Richardson has said, “and now I’m this powerful guy with a boner, dominating all these girls.”
Has Richardson become untouchable due to his pop culture popularity?
Supermodel Coco Rocha once told Fashion magazine, “I’ve shot with [Richardson] before, but I didn’t feel comfortable and I won’t do it again.”
With the amount of models that have claimed sexual abuse or harassment against Richardson, it’s apparent that the power is not in the numbers.
Perhaps if more bigger names were to speak up, the industry would have no choice but to take this issue seriously. But then again, maybe Richardson’s method–like most sexual predators– is to victimize the less powerful, younger models who’ve not made a name for themselves yet.
Watch the video below to see what Sara Ziff has to say about Terry Richardson and the allegations against him.