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Malgosia

March 20th, 2015

Models.com’s ICONS: Malgosia

Beyond her pristine body of work and timeless beauty, what has earned Malgosia Bela a spot as one of the industry’s most beloved icons is her enthralling wit and mesmerizing charm. This was in full display on set, seeing her interact in her unique effortless and spellbinding way; her sensual and disarming gaze evocative of a modern day Hollywood goddess. Far from overt, her sexiness lies more in her nonchalant attitude countered by her pointed features from razor-sharp cheekbones to her clear blue eyes. Naturally taking on any role that is given her whether it’s a transformative campaign for Alexander Wang or a sultry vision for Chanel beauty; Malgosia is more than just a pretty face however – with a Master’s degree and a disciplined business acumen she has been able to maintain her more than 15-year legacy and remain a favorite with a who’s who list of prominent photographers including Mario Sorrenti, Glen Luchford, Mert & Marcus, Mario Testino, Steven Klein & David Sims. Brands like Gucci, Jil Sander, Alexander Wang, Vionnet, and La Perla call upon her ethereal, captivating look to bring their creative visions to life. This bewitching Polish beauty remains an iconic symbol of versatility and appeal. Stylist Gro Curtis sits down with Malgosia for a chat for Models.com.

Photography by Steven Pan (Management + Artists) for Models.com
Styled by Gro Curtis
Make up by Adrien Pinault (Management + Artists)
Hair by David von Cannon (Los Angeles: Streeters Los Angeles, New York: Streeters New York)

Interview by Gro Curtis
Creative Direction and intro by Stephan Moskovic

On this shoot you hurt my “sport ego” during our table football session. It was 5-0 for you. Remember? It was the first time after months that I did some sport activity. Confess, you are hiding a table in your living room?

I don’t and frankly it was probably the second time I had ever played table football in my long life. Just naturally gifted in any given discipline I guess.

Last time I saw you it was in October after the Lanvin show. It was Kirsten (Owen), Natasa (Vojnovic) and you when I came by. It was such anti stress therapy being around you girls and listening you talk. Of course Natasa was the loudest and that’s why we love her; for me it felt like a relaxed reunion amongst you all without talking about fashion.

Oh yes. These girls are great to talk with about anything but fashion. We also go a long way back together…. Kirsten has kids also so we are basically two mothers sharing experiences. My son was there too, remember? He really hit it off with Natasa.

You made dinner but I just remember that champagne. What did you cook?

Let’s just say I opened the champagne. We don’t need to go into the details of operating the microwave….

I didn’t tell you but I must make a confession – I almost tried to steal that beautiful vase from the hallway. Natasa was covering me. Kirsten declined to participate.

I always loved Kirsten.

After that we went to a nice dinner party and then somehow ended up at a rave party under some bridge?

Yes, what a sad contrast with our intimate gathering in the kitchen around a bottle of champagne…. Those big parties under the bridge are definitely not for me. That was the end of my evening.

The thing about you is that you are able to adjust to every situation while always being yourself. In the industry we work in, I find that so hard to achieve and very rare.

Oh well…. I can only say thank you! The truth is, my parents have always been telling me that an intelligent person can adapt to any situation. Looks like it works also for semi-intelligent models!

I’m completely going to ignore how great you look because I only want to focus on the fact that one can talk with you about anything. I think the deepest part of your charisma is in the way you think and talk and somehow it translates to the camera. That’s why it is so much more than “looks” when we see an image of you and your eyes.

It’s true, I always try to think as I speak and I try to find words that correspond exactly to my feelings. Perhaps it makes me look more intelligent than I am, but what’s important for me is that it opens up something really honest in me and automatically in the person I’m talking with. That’s why a lot of people consider me “real”. Nothing is rehearsed or memorized. I love saying what I think. I don’t need to remember any “dos” and “don’ts” because it’s enough to just be me. Or maybe I’m just lazy and it’s simple as that.

I’m not going to ask you about the hundreds of shows, covers, campaigns, special projects and shoots you did during your incredible career. Now people talk about you as the legendary Malgosia. Is it strange to hear that? How do you feel about it?

People really say that? Wow! I’m really not aware of that. Thank you people. It’s a big thing. Makes me feel a bit old but nice at the same time. Please tell my son next time you see him, “your mom is a legend, bro”. He’ll be so proud.

You started to model in an era without all these social media tools. These days after the show, dozens of photographers and bloggers are waiting for some new, “it” girl to come out and pose for them. From your point of view what do you think about this phenomenom that’s still growing each season? It has really became one big circus.

I try to stay away from social media. In a way I’m scared of it. I’m aware of the fact that it might influence my “career” somehow, but at the same time I know my strengths and my weaknesses. I come across so much better in direct contact. Virtual reality is not my strongest point, so I tend to leave the place for others in this department.

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