Supermodel Tatjana Patitz has died at age 56.
Vogue, which helped launch Patitz’s profession within the Nineteen Eighties, introduced information of her dying on Jan. 11. Her reason for dying was not made public. Thought-about one of many authentic supermodels, the Germany-born, Sweden-raised Patitz entered her first modeling contest at age 17 in Stockholm. Though she took dwelling third place, it was not till well-known photographer Peter Lindbergh photographed her a couple of years later in 1988 that her profession started to blossom.
Certainly one of Patitz’s most memorable appearances got here after she modeled for British Vogue in 1990 — George Michael forged her for his “Freedom ’90” music video alongside Cindy Crawford, Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell and Linda Evangelista.
Patitz advised The New York Instances in 2016 that Michael was one in all her “first teenage crushes,” so she was starstruck when she first met him. The 2 labored collectively a couple of occasions, although, she stated, and he or she all the time had a very good expertise with him, together with on the “Freedom ’90” video. She famous, although, that the musician really wasn’t even on set the day she filmed her portion of the video. Patitz flew out and in of city for the day and did not even cross paths with Michael.
“I used to be in my very own zone,” she stated of filming. “I needed to type of slide up and down the wall for a part of the day. The texture of the set was so run-down, this massive, loft type of vibe. There was one other setup with me laying on a chaise lounge with a black smoking jacket. I believe I’ll have had a bustier on. And I used to be smoking, even. Folks nonetheless smoked in movies then and even in movies.”
By no means miss a narrative—join PEOPLE‘s free weekly e-newsletter to get the largest information of the week delivered to your inbox each Friday.
As soon as Patitz’s profession began to take off within the Nineties, she set down roots in California and likewise made a house for herself within the pages of the assorted editions of Voguein addition to different magazines like Marie Claire and cosmopolitan.
Together with often working with Lindbergh, Patitz usually shot with well-known photographers Herb Ritts and Patrick Demarchelier as nicely. She constructed shut relationships with the photographers, who continued to assist elevate her profession.
“Folks all the time stated that I regarded particular; that I did not seem like anybody else,” Patitz advised Vogue in 1988. “And I used to be going to make it due to that.” A 1990 function on Patitz in Harper’s Bazaar confirmed the mannequin’s uniqueness in her magnificence.
“Certainly, Patitz’s options nearly confuse. Like Garbo or the Mona Lisa, the inexplicable presents of line and luminescence defy definition,” the journal reads, after attributing related sentiments to hairstylist Oribe and make-up artist Gary Berkowitz.
Throughout her profession, Patitz modeled for the likes of Chanel, Donna Karan, Vivienne Westwood and lots of extra. Her ultimate runway present de ella was at Milan Vogue Week in 2019 with Etro for the style home’s Autumn / Winter 2019/20 presentation.
“Tatjana was all the time the European image of stylish, like Romy Schneider-meets-Monica Vitti,” stated Anna Wintour, chief content material officer of Condé Nast and world editorial director of Vogue, after the information of Patitz’s dying. “She was far much less seen than her de ella friends de ella—extra mysterious, extra grown-up, extra unattainable—and that had its personal enchantment de ella.”
In her profession, Patitz appeared on the duvet of Vogue six completely different occasions, making her a legacy on the vogue journal.
Patitz’s son Jonah Johnson adopted in his mom’s footsteps to grow to be a mannequin in his personal proper — even posing together with his mom for Vogue. The 2 appeared within the vogue journal greater than as soon as, most just lately in 2019. She advised Vogue in 2022, “Jonah is my supply of happiness.”
Patitz’s final pink carpet look was with Jonah on the Tribute to Bambi in Berlin, Germany, final October. For the occasion, the 2 coordinated in all-black fits to stroll the carpet collectively.
Patitz was born on March 25, 1966, in Hamburg and welcomed her son, Jonah, in November 2004. She had a deep love of all animals however particularly horses, in keeping with Vogueand was an envoy for the American Wild Horse Sanctuary.
She usually shared pictures of her animals on Instagram, together with in her final social media submit in August. She celebrated Nationwide Canine Day with two candy snaps of her pups, Matilda and Gatsby. Patitz additionally usually shared throwback photographs from her profession, sharing reward for the groups she’s labored with over time.
Patitz lived a personal life whereas not on a runway or pink carpet, selecting to boost her son out of the highlight. Her iconic work from her will dwell on as her legacy from her.
“In entrance of the lens, she’s it! It is clear why she’s in such demand,” hairstylist Sally Hershberger advised Harper’s Bazaar in the identical 1990 function that touted Patitz’s magnificence. “She’s probably the most lovely of all of them.”