Originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina, Flavia moved to San Francisco at a young age to pursue her university studies in photography with the support of her family. Back in 1981, women were rare in this field of study. Around that time, some of the first photography schools were established in San Francisco. Photography was considered a true art form by specialized institutes there, and local art galleries encouraged artists to express themselves through a camera. As a result, the best photographers in the world could be found exhibiting their work in San Francisco at a time when many people could only see photography in the context of archives and news reports.
Soon thereafter, Flavia had the opportunity to become the assistant to several prominent fine art photographers. A short time later, she received invitations from local galleries to show her own work in solo exhibitions. This made it possible for her to earn a living as an artist in the photography haven that San Francisco had become.
Flavia’s Italian roots from her father’s side of the family and her connections to artists from Europe aroused her interest in European culture. In 1995, she relocated to Paris, but soon realized that the City of Light was still far from being a place where fine art photographers could thrive. She then decided to move into the genre of photography that was most admired in Paris: fashion.
The arrival of digital cameras did not hinder her work – quite the opposite. She quickly learned about the intricacies of digital photography, and her film photography experience gave her a decisive advantage over the new generation of photographers. The wave of amateur photographers who felt qualified to create catalogues and fashion shoots thanks to software did not pose a threat. Instead, Flavia’s gifts shone through: her perfect mastery of artificial light, her talent for composition, lightness and elegance. Additionally, her expansive sense of culture in general, and her experience as a citizen of the world allowed her to understand the designers of each continent and showcase their work.
When creating a fashion photo, a photographer is never alone. Fashion professionals, whether they are makeup artists, hairstylists or wardrobe stylists, recognize Flavia’s true talent, and find working with her on projects for independent designers as rewarding as contributing to major advertising campaigns. Although globalization and outsourcing have had an impact on independent designers, Paris remains one of the last great capital cities of the world where uniquely interesting designs can still be found in the fashion boutiques of independent designers. Flavia knows how to showcase the originality of each of these designers, and her work is considered iconic by the Marais designers who collaborate with her. Each year, approximately twenty designers come to France from the United States, Russia or South America to have their catalogs shot by master photographer, Flavia Raddavero. But only once a year: too much exposure impairs the vision of eternity.
Claire Martin, Art Historian