Hot on the heels of their highly successful campaigns focusing on British cinema and promising actors, Burberry have developed a new twist for their SS11 campaign. Rather than using rising stars and starlets, they have instead homed in on the offspring of international megatalents in the form of Tali Lennox, daughter of Annie, and Tara Ferry, son of Bryan.
Not to diminish the respective achievements as models of either, but does this shift in emphasis to a discernible pedigree have anything to do with the looming royal wedding? One can’t help but wonder. Certainly, the campaign sees Burberry in a languid romantic mood.
Shot by Mario Testino, the campaign places the couple in the quintessentially English setting of Brighton Beach and can only be described as most definitely implying a narrative of romance between the two. Brighton, one should remember, is a traditional hideaway for secret romantic trysts and star-crossed lovers fleeing the watchful eye of stiff British society. In the accompanying soundtrack for Mario Testino’s short video that complements the photo campaign, UK indie jangly band The Feeling offer up the their dreamy ballad ‘Rosé ‘ as the couple seem quietly intimate on the maudlin shale of the textbook English beach, “I love you, especially today…”
Maybe it’s just the media zeitgeist clouding everything, but even in the choice of garments from the current collection –oddly formal for a walk on the pebbles- there’s a vaguely regal tone to it all; exactly what a prince and princess might wear even in the relative privacy of the beach. Tara’s slim grey suit and Tali’s beige trenchcoat nipped at the waist with an eye-catching snakeskin belt are entirely fashionable but they certainly wouldn’t look out of place at even the most august of occasions. After all both HM Queen Elizabeth II and HRH The Prince of Wales have granted Burberry Royal Warrants.
On the other hand, some of the campaign images show items from the collection that are more in keeping with Brighton’s historic reputation as a hangout for teenage rebels dating all the way back to ‘Brighton Rock’. The ostentatiously studded biker jacket or the snugly fitting women’s leather jacket in green-tinged python immediately evoke the wild revels of teds, mods, rockers and punks played out the background of the usually tranquil seaside town. At various points since World War II, the British media has fervidly reported Brighton’s wilder side; a sign of certain decline to the conservative or a battle cry to the young rebels of all ages, depending on the position of the reader.
Once again Burberry has delivered a campaign that shows that it knows exactly what it is doing. Making use of the talents of one of the world’s most famous photographers it constructs a very specific image of essentially British style that exudes its cultural identity built into its DNA manifesting at every level.