Before Frank by photographer Charles Moriarty will comprise images taken before the launch of Winehouse’s 2003 debut album, Frank. The photos are derived from two photographic sessions – one in London, one in New York – capturing the much-missed modern great, standing at the cusp of a stratospheric and turbulent career. Moriarty anticipates the inclusion of 50-60 images from these unreleased sessions; the book itself, meanwhile, will be a coffee table tome put together by acclaimed book designer Sybren Kuiper.
Documentarian Asif Kapadia, whose 2015 feature on Winehouse, Amy, won an Oscar amongst a score of other awards, will compose the book’s foreword. In an extract, Kapadia writes, “Over the years I have seen thousands of images of Amy, by brilliant photographers from all over the world, but Charles Moriarty’s photos stood out […] I felt I finally saw the real Amy, the girl before the fame”.
One preview image from the book depicts a pensive Amy applying electric pink lipstick; in another, she lounges in her signature retro makeup and a nascent beehive yet to reach its future heights. The collection is candid, heart-wrenching and, appropriately, frank; it’s a bittersweet perspective on a prodigious talent before she became the target of ravenous tabloid headlines.
For the book to be realised, the Kickstarter campaign must reach a funding total of £15,000 by 19th May. For fans seeking one more glimpse of the authentic Amy behind the paparazzi photos, it may well be an investment worth making