Celebrating one of the greatest love stories ever told, Mario Testino has photographed Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga for Vogue.
[quotes quotes_style=”bquotes” quotes_pos=”center”]
With its lush cinematography, Loving is a visual paean to the 1950s, but it is also a fierce interrogation of the hypocrisies of that era. It traces the arc of the Lovings’ struggle to live as husband and wife at a time not so long ago when it was illegal in sixteen states to marry someone of a different race. As the Lovings are forced to leave their tight-knit, working-class community and live in Washington, D.C., around them swirls language that evokes the present debate on gay marriage. “It’s God’s law,” the sheriff tells the couple after their harrowing middle-of-the-night arrest. “A robin’s a robin, a sparrow is a sparrow.” As Edgerton says, “That’s the double beauty of the film. It’s a racial period piece, but it also echoes very loudly today.”
Negga gives a radiant and haunting performance as Mildred, transforming from a country girl everyone calls Stringbean into an accidental activist—an unwitting righter of history’s wrongs. “Her quiet evolution was so touching to me,” says the actress, who was born in Addis Ababa to an Ethiopian father and an Irish mother. “To have that kind of hope in an atmosphere of threat and fear.”