Leica Camera AG, collaborating with Lenny Kravitz (*) has perpetrated a “Correspondent” version from an honored Leica M-P.
This is a limited series of 125 sets or copies of briefcases that will contain a body of the camera cited, a Summicron-M 35 mm f/2 Asph. and a Summilux-M 50 mm f/1,4 Asph. and will be sold for the price of 22.500 € –including a book– in Leica boutiques.
And I say “perpetrated” because each of those camera bodies and objectives, originally black-lacquered, has been “artificially aged,” in a differed way for each of the 125 sets.
The idea would be to try to offer the set an aspect similar to that of an original camera that has experienced natural wear after years of usage from a correspondent or a photojournalist.
The problem is that that is something that cannot be emulated, and the result is what it is: a more or less dreadful fake.
Any photographer that understands what a Leica-M product is –especially if it’s analog- knows that it is a lasting product, which after decades of usage, is given an imprint of “brassing” by the owner, which is unique to that use of day after day. This idea of “Correspondent” is therefore –in my opinion- against some of the most pure concept values of Leica-M (**): durability, fidelity by the user, service, personality…
From my point of view –very personal, I don’t deny it- the idea is gaudy and would deserve to enter in something alike, which is no different from what the famous book “Guinness World Records” has become. Something very similar to putting photochemical film edges on Instagram pictures, or buying –expensive- jeans with holes at a store.
To top off the idea, the finishing is not simil leather or “Vilkuanite” but skin of water snake bred in captivity, “a non-threatened species” is indicated.
Ay! I recently noticed Oscar Barnack stirring in his grave, although the wave bouncing was in Albacete.