Sunday, March 25, 2012

A Nation's Pride

Last week, as I ventured along Berlin's famous shopping strip Kurfurstendamm, I was stopped dead in my tracks by the visually arresting image of Chinese model Liu Wen, looming from a 50 foot Diesel Jeans billboard which had been mounted directly above the entrance of KaDeWe (Berlin's version of Harrods). As a person of Asian descent, to see Wen's statuesque frame and exquisitely dimpled cherubic features so prominently displayed especially in a such predominantly white culture as it is in Germany, is to feel truly represented.

Wen has been representing a nation of people since she was discovered in 2006 via a modelling contest in her hometown of Hunan. By 2007, Wen had relocated to Beijing to pursue modelling full-time where she came to the attention of former creative director of Marie Claire International Joseph Carle, who cast her in her first magazine editorial and recommended her to an overseas agency. Pretty soon Wen was appearing regularly in local editions of Vogue, Harpers Bazaar and Elle. Within the space of two years Wen had made her international runway debut at the Fall/Winter 2009 collections walking in shows for Burberry, Chanel and Jean Paul Gaultier. In 2009, to further her burgeoning modelling aspirations, Wen moved again this time to New York where she is represented by Marilyn Model Management.

Representing - Liu Wen
Diesel - S/S 2012
Photographer - Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott
Source - models.com

Wen has achieved many remarkable milestones in her three years since moving to the world's modelling capital. Wen has established a reputation as one of the most consistently in demand catwalk models amassing a 54 show tally recently at the Fall/Winter 2012 collections, whilst her relatable beauty has been showcased in campaigns for the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Calvin Klein, Lane Crawford and the Gap. Editorial appearances in American Vogue, V Magazine, i-D, W and Another Magazine have kept Wen firmly within the winner's circle. By November 2009, Wen made modelling history by becoming the first Asian model to appear in the Victoria's Secret runway extravaganza. The following year, Wen signed a groundbreaking contract with Estée Lauder, becoming the first model of Asian descent to represent the cosmetics giant.

I have been a fan of Wen since her early modelling days, not only because of her obvious beauty but also due to her incredible work ethic, impossibly sweet personality and her kind nature. Wen along with fellow Chinese model Du Juan, have paved the way for a generation of Asian models to come to the fore in an industry that has long turned a blind eye to the diversity of the world in which we live. In an interview with Chinese Numéro, Wen is asked if there are any faces she favours amongst the up-and-coming Chinese models, to which she responds beautifully, "I like any face as long as it's Chinese. It's like spotting a Chinese dish in a banquet of French or Italian cuisine. You see home there, and home's sweet."

Reason to be Proud
Liu Wen's T Magazine Cover
Photographer - Unknown
Source - thefashionspot.com 

A Nation's Pride
T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

T Magazine - March 17, 2012
Photographer - Angelo Pennetta
Source - fashiongonerogue.com

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for the feedback, This post was personal...have been holding off on doing a profile on Liu for a while. Waiting for the right moment. Glad you liked it ;-)

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