"I never actually worked with Grace during her life as a professional model," Christie told us. "By the time that she gave me my first Vogue shoot with Marie Helvin in 1974, she had long become the creative force working in the fashion room atVogue. None the less, for me she was still photographic heaven. She was so brilliant as a model because she had an appreciation and understanding of art in all its forms; mimicry; gentleness and serenity. She understood everything that the clothes were trying to do. She became the image. She had then and still has, an absolute passion for all that she does. Photographically - and personally - Grace was everything I was looking for. And she was willing. Lucky me!"
Christie's Limited Edition Collection, available to the public through appointment only, will feature both seminal and never-seen-before photographs of Coddington, Lynn Kohlman, Jerry Hall and Marie Helvin.
"Everything had been lying in drawers for the preceding 35-odd years, surviving relationships, fire and floods," he explained. "As I began to put everything down and saw it as a whole, I thought that perhaps there was a certainlookbehind it and a friend suggested that I started that I started to transfer all my images to the computer. I did, and here we are."
Coddington is not the only photographic muse the photographer has fond memories of, recalling past shoots with Jerry Hall.
"That hair! It had a personality all of its own," he said. "Nothing quite like it had been seen before, I think. And those long, long legs. She brought to the Seventies what Jean Shrimpton brought to the Sixties. She had a flamboyance. And she was funny. Glorious!"
Appointments to view the collection can be made during from September 16 to September 19 at WILLIECHRISTIE.COM.