The bikini that made history

Ibiza, summer 1953. A beautiful French woman walks along the beach dressed in an really unusual outfit at Spain, then under Franc0’s dictature: a two pieces swimsuit. Her friend, the photographer Oriol Maspons immortalized the girl in an image for the History: the first bikini photographed in Spain. Today, Ibiza Trendy interviewes an artist that captured some of the most iconic images of Spain in the 60s and 70s.  Hippies, nudists, groundbreaking commercials … Maspons was a man that could capture the essence of and era. Today he is still active and it was really a pleasure to talk with him.

Oriol Maspons photographed by  José María Alguersuari.

One of the first tourists. Maspons traveled to Ibiza for the first time in the early 50s. The island was a virgin paradise where the first tourist where arriving. The loved the warm weather and the turquoise waters. “It was very shocking for me to discover Ibiza.  I used to travel everywhere by bike … and then it was forbidden to wear bermudas  in the street! I remember once, in Vara de Rey, a police wanted to punish me because my shirt half unbuttoned. Now it’s sound incredible, doest’n it?

Calle de la Virgen. “During my early days in Ibiza I used to live in calle de la Virgen. I loved it because from there you could hear every noise from the port.  I also remember very well Bar Domingo. Actually there were two: the Dirty Domingo and the Clean Domingo. It was the nickname invented by the tourists. At that time I was a fairly regular customer at the Dirty Domingo”.

The first bikini worn in Spain. It happened in 1953. The photographer was on a  Ibiza beach with a good friend, a young French woman named Monica. At that time, he decided to immortalize the girl wearing an outfit never seen before in Spain: Yes, we are talking about the bikini! Behind the girl, two uniformed officers patrol apparently ignoring the scene. “A girl wearing a bikini …it  was such a revolution! You could not imagine this in Spain…but it was not Spain, it was Ibiza,” says Oriol. This is one of his most famous images and icon of an era from the time when Spain began to open up to tourism.

The rich hippies. Oriol Maspons portrayed some of the most beautiful-and bold-prints of the hippies in Ibiza during the 60s and 70s. “Actually I did not have a relationship with the hippies, most of them were German, so it was not easy to get in touch. Previously I had the idea that they were dirty and poor people, but the reality was very different. That hippies were rich and used to drink expensive French wine!

Ibiza people. “I loved the people in Ibiza and I still feel that they are very special. I do not mean the tourist, but the people living there, people from everywhere…they are alternative. I kept going to Ibiza during all my life and it is true that the people there have something different. During a trip to Japan, I remember seeing a young couple sitting on the subway selling some stuff. I approached them and asked ¨: You belong to Ibiza, don’t you? They were quite surprised, but the fact is that people from Ibiza has something special and you can identify them everywhere”.

See below photo shootings and fashion editorials.

Cover of a famous Spanish book, photo by Oriol Maspons.

Young Oriol Maspons.

by Judit Carcasona