“Luxury is something money can buy. Smart luxury is not,” said Pino Gomes, a Brazilian photographer who has been tasked with shooting an international campaign for Gc watches with an emphasis on two key concepts: smart luxury and rising stars.
Smart luxury is being able to do what you love and feel it intrinsically, according to Gomes, and to be naturally beautiful and sensual. The concept is the very essence of the new campaign but perhaps more importantly; it is the essence of Gomes’ artistic vision.
“Smart Luxury for me is what I do. I am fortunate to be meeting all of these beautiful people all over the world and to be able to do something that I love. That is smart luxury; it is intrinsic, it cannot be bought. We want to transfer this concept to the watch, essentially a machine, through the campaign,” explained Gomes.
To adapt an abstract concept, through photography, to a product is not an easy task. This is why Gomes is working on “smart luxury moments” of people who are successful in their field and are comfortable in their own skin and with their own beauty. Those people are what he calls “rising stars”.
They can range from musicians to actors, designers, athletes, et cetera but they are not ‘celebrities’ in the usual sense. Gomes has been shooting some of these Egyptian rising stars, capturing their moments of “smart luxury” through the Middle East Trading Company, the company that handles Gc in Egypt.
The project is more than just commercial. In fact, the more interesting part is the artistic aspect and with Gomes, there is no shortage. For Gomes, the vision of natural beauty he has compliments the project.
“I grew up in Rio De Janeiro and I am used to seeing people’s bodies and their natural sensuality. Their natural beauty is what forms the smart luxury moment. And the interesting thing is that I feel that people are the same everywhere; the way they relate to their art, the way they enjoy what they do, it is all the same across different cultures,” said Gomes.
Gomes uses his training as a make-up artist and actor to convey his vision through photography, and one of his new but unrelated projects blends painting with photography in a surreal manner and his multi-disciplinary approach translates well in his Gc campaign.
The pictures are all black and white, a decision Gomes says was influenced by both his artistic vision as well as to unify the campaigns in different countries. “The choice of black and white removes the distractions, namely the colours. It makes us focus on the natural beauty as well as aesthetically provide one unifying ‘theme’ or at least continuity to the campaign.”
The international campaign will result in exhibitions and a book based on the concept. In October, the Middle East Trading Company will host the exhibition where Gomes’ Egypt photos will be shown. The event will include some of the rising stars; people like designer Amina Khalil (known as Amina K.) and musician Sabrine Darbuka, captured in all their natural beauty by Gomes.