Helmut Newton inspires Poke Topshop site

Topshop has launched a website designed by Poke to publicise its new Helmut Newton-inspired photographic studio.

Featuring photographs of shoppers at Topshop’s flagship Oxford Street store in London W1, the website, www.newtonmachinetopshop.com, went live last week.

The images are captured in a studio at the store using the Helmut Newton Photo Machine, which the late fashion photographer invented in the 1970s. He fixed a mirror, light and remote control trigger to a camera to allow models to
pose, light and photograph themselves, avoiding the need for a photographer and stylist.

Topshop asked Poke to create the site in January, as part of its long-term relationship with the digital consultancy, which designed the retailer’s main site in 2006.

It briefed Poke to provide a platform for the daily images produced in the store, and create a show case for
Newton’s career.

‘This project is really about exploiting this new association between Topshop and a fashion photographer of enormous repute,’ says Poke creative director Nicolas Roope.

Topshop approached the Helmut Newton Estate with the idea, working with Newton’s former agent Tiggy
Maconochie on the project. ‘We tried to keep the aesthetic of the site quite dry, as Topshop wants to emphasise the high fashion, arty aspiration of the project,’ says Roope. ‘As a result, we gave the site a pared-down, neutral look with very refined typography. It has an artbook, rather than a populist, flavour.

The studio will remain at its Oxford Street store for another week, before travelling to the Manchester and Dublin outlets.

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