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One in Ten

From the Dazed Archives: December 2000 We look back at this cover shoot by Nick Knight that featured women recovering from breast cancer.

In December 2000 Nick Knight photographed breast cancer survivors to reflect our restricted ideas of beauty and explore the sexuality of these women. Working closely with the breast cancer charity, Breakthrough, Knight and then Dazed fashion director Katy England set out to find women who had suffered breast cancer to take part in a fashion shoot and film for Knight's SHOWStudio to challenge the perceived notions of beauty within fashion.

Here are some excerpts from the interviews that Rachel Newsome did with the women who took part in the shoot:

D&C: What do you think doing a fashion shoot around this issue achieves?
Nikki Umberti: It's really inspiring to see sick women who've come through this. The hard part is that you really lose your confidence. I thought this shoot was romantic and sexy. Nick's putting out images of beautiful women who've been through crazy shit.

D&C: What was your initial reaction to the idea of the shoot?
Liz Bellamy: It was a dream come true. I have chosen not to have my breast reconstructed and although I admire people tremendously who have had it done, part of me wants to say it's fine if you don't.

D&C: How do you think fashion can help people understand the issues?
Miranda Vincente: Ideas presented as images are more easily absorbed than in words. It raises questions of what's beautiful. I don't think it would change people's views - there's so many images of how people should look - but it goes some way to helping.
D&C: How did the loss of breasts affect the way you felt about your body?
Miranda Vincente: It affected my confidence 100 per cent. Losing my breasts wiped away my sexuality - the feeling of being a woman. It made me feel I didn't have the right to feel sexy. It made me feel very introspective, although I was a very sexy person before.

D&C: What was your initial reaction to the shoot?
Matuschka: Relief. I had tried approaching various fashion photographers in the past with a similar idea but no one was interested. I thought breast cancer could be made acceptable and a woman with one breast could illustrate the notion that sexuality lies in the personality, not solely in the body.
D&C: Why did the idea appeal to you?
Matuschka: Haute couture was involved - people that set fashion trends were willing to get behind the cause and support the project.

CREDITS

Photography Nick Knight
Styling Katie England
Hair Using Kiehl's and Sam McKnight Products
Make-Up Val Garland at Untitled
Nail Technicians Marion Newman, Electra Sawbridge and Andrea Fulerton for Amalgamated Talent
Production Paul Hunwick
Photographic Assistant Luke Thomas and Ben Dunbar
Styling Assistant Sara Burn
Models Sue Loosley, Nikki Umberti, Liz Bellamy, Anne Stansell, Matuschka, Miranda Vincente, Harriet Close