Son of a carpenter who labored in the mining industry, August Sander was born 1876 in Herdorf, Germany. While working in a local mine himself, August began assisting a photographer, who was working for a mining company, and soon purchased equipment for his own darkroom. After military service and brief wanderings about Germany, August set up shop in Linz and then in Cologne.

By the 1920’s August had joined the Group of Progressive Artists, documenting modern society in his photographs. He travelled extensively, taking 40,000 photos by the time of his death in 1964. August Sander is best known for his portraits as seen in the series People of the 20th Century.

It’s nearly impossible not to feel inspired by the Sander’s series as is 28-year-old British designer, Carolyn Massey.

Graduating with an MA from the Royal College of Art in 2005, Carolyn launched her menswear label in London a year later, establishing a sartorial code of what it means to be a gentleman in times of social and civil unrest.

Drawing deep inspiration from August Sander’s portraits, Carolyn Massey captures the dignity of men in times of war, migration, and poverty, who “make do” with whatever garments are available to them.

Each garment in Carolyn’s 2009 a/w collection is a snapshot of what it means to be a gentleman, no matter the time or the place!

Photo 2009 a/w collection Copyright Carolyn Massey.

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