Fashion photographer Bruce Weber accused of harassment
A second male model has come forward to accuse iconic fashion photographer Bruce Weber of sexual misconduct.
The 71-year-old Weber, who worked for Vogue and helped forge the image of such brands as Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and Abercrombie & Fitch, is alleged to have sexually harassed 31-year-old Mark Ricketson during a 2005 photo shoot in New York.
‘He told me I ‘looked tense’ and proceeded to press his thumb on my forehead,’ Ricketson said during a press conference in Los Angeles on Tuesday.
A second male model has accused photographer Bruce Weber of sexual misconduct (Mark Ricketson (L), standing beside attorney Lisa Bloom and former model Jason Boyce Dec. 2017)
Weber is alleged to have sexually harassed Mark Ricketson during a New York photo shoot in in 2005 (Pictured: Mark Ricketson (L) and Jason Boyce)
Ricketson was also joined by Jason Boyce (pictured), who filed a complaint against Weber on Friday following a December 2014 incident at his Manhattan studio
According to the complaint, Weber asked Boyce, then 28, to undress and then proceeded to fondle and forcibly kiss him
‘He then took my hand and told me to ‘find the energy’ by guiding my hand and rubbing it on one of three places — my forehead, chest or my stomach.’
‘Each time the ‘energy’ in my stomach would get lower and lower until I had to navigate the remaining space left before having to touch myself. I felt ashamed and embarrassed,’ he added.
Lisa Bloom, Ricketson’s attorney, said Weber then reached out for her client’s hand, lowered it towards his genitals and began to rub.
Ricketson feared he would have been ‘blacklisted’ by the industry if he voiced his accusations, which places enormous power in the hands of photographers and top tier modeling agencies who book all their jobs.
‘If you wanted to work, you did what you were told,’ Ricketson said Tuesday.
‘Trying to cope with the trauma of what I’d experienced while staying silent all these years led to a battle with depression, addictive tendencies and struggling to form loving and lasting relationships,’ he said.
Ricketson was also joined by Jason Boyce, who filed a complaint against Weber on Friday following a December 2014 incident at his Manhattan studio.
Photographer Bruce Weber, seen here at a New York fashion show September 7, 2017, has been accused of sexually harassing a male model
Bruce Weber during W Magazine Trunk Show at 545 West 22nd Street in New York City, New York
According to the complaint, Weber asked Boyce, then 28, to undress and then proceeded to fondle and forcibly kiss him.
‘If you just had confidence, you’d really go far,’ Weber is alleged to have murmured. ‘How far do you want to make it? How ambitious are you?’
Ricketson claims he would have ‘blacklisted’ by the industry if he voiced his accusations back in 2005
Bloom told AFP that since the suit was filed on Friday she has received calls from others with similar complaints against Weber.
After his experience, Boyce moved to California and gave up modeling.
‘Mr Boyce felt intense dread at the thought of a modeling career in an industry where Mr Weber was considered by many to be a top photographer and primary champion of male models,’ the complaint said.
He is seeking damage and interest for the ’emotional anguish’ suffered and the loss of economic opportunity.
Besides Weber, the suit names the Soul Artist modeling agency that employed Boyce, and its boss Jason Kanner.
Bloom said that the statute of limitation prohibited Ricketson from taking any legal action against Weber.
In October, photographer Terry Richardson, known for his provocative photographs and accused of sexually exploiting his models for years, was dropped by Vogue, Vanity Fair and other Conde Nast titles.
Richardson had worked for Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Jacobs and Tom Ford.