Royal Ballet: Leaping beauties caught on camera


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The Independent Culture

The Royal Ballet's top dancers wear quirky accessories and clothes by young British fashion designers in a new series of unconventional portraits.

Marianela Nuñez, who makes her debut in Onegin this month, has been captured as if in a Biba advert, wearing a head-piece and bejewelled outfit. And Sergei Polunin who dramatically walked out of the Royal Ballet last year and who will return as a guest artist to dance with Tamara Rojo as part of the Frederick Ashton mixed programme next month, can be seen flying through the air wearing a knitted leather neckpiece.

The 35 black and white portraits by Rick Guest also include Edward Watson crouching like a frog on a ledge recalling his performance in The Metamorphosis, for which he won an Olivier Award in 2012 and Zenaida Yanowsky leaping in a pair of woollen black wings. Lauren Cuthbertson also wears a winged dress, posing en pointe with one leg raised high in the air.

Guest, who has photographed sportspeople including Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo for advertisments and most recently worked on the campaign for the 2012 London Olympic Games, teamed up with stylist Olivia Pomp to capture the dancers in a new light. "Most dance photography is usually only documented for posterity," says Guest. "We wanted to do something different by bringing together portraiture, fashion and dance."

Now Is All There Is – Bodies in Motion, The Gallery at The Hospital Club, London WC2 ( 25 to 27 January