Mario Testino is honoured with the inaugural Moët & Chandon Etoile Award

by Kamitha Sloan

The world of fashion, art and culture united in London on September 19th to pay tribute to an extrordinary talent who has impacted our lives with his longstanding influence on our cultural society with humbleness and humility.

In this, the Moët & Chandon Etoile Award’s debut year, who better to embody the spirit of the award than Mario Testino, who in 2011 is celebrating 30 years as one of the most internationally respected and iconic photographers of the century. Possessing uniquely personal relationships with his subjects, Mario has the remarkable ability to capture spontaneous intimate moments, which captivate audiences worldwide.

 Jo Thornton, Managing Director of Moët Hennessy UK says “We are absolutely delighted that Mario Testino is the inaugural recipient of the Moët & Chandon Etoile Award. Mario’s career mirrors perfectly the spirit of generosity and creative passion that the award captures”.

 During Mario Testino’s expansive career, he has worked with some of the world’s most famous women including Kate Moss; Penelope Cruz, Gwyneth Paltrow, Nicole Kidman and Madonna. Within the past 30 years Mario Testino has been entrusted with many Royal sittings for TRH the Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, the late Diana, Princess of Wales and most recently, the iconic engagement portraits of TRH the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. 

 Mario Testino has worked across the most exclusive high fashion magazines and evoked audiences with his bewitching advertising campaigns; to include his recent embodiment of Giambattista Valli’s compelling pictorials. Although these accolades are bestowed upon him he is more recognized for his humanitarian efforts.

  Among them are Doctor Emeritus from the University of the Arts London, the Medalha Tiradentes from the city of Rio de Janerio, Brazil and the Order of Merit from the city of Lima, Peru.

 In December 2008, a trip to his native Peru with Save the Children to visit the completed El Salvador Clinic in the Pueblo Nuevo District in Chincha. This clinic was built for children with tuberculosis in the area badly affected by the devastating earthquake, which hit the coast of Peru in August 2007. The El Salvador clinic was entirely funded from the sale of a single print from Mario Testino’s iconic portraits of the late Diana, Princess of Wales.

 Mario Testino says For me, Moët & Chandon represents excellence and luxury, for this reason I feel very honoured to be the first person receiving the Etoile award, in this my 30th year as a photographer, and I thank them for it.”



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