Friday Inspiration: The Rise and Fall of Gia Carangi

''Too beautiful to die, too wild to live''

The story of the rapid fame and the more rapid decline marked the life of this young and rebellious women. Wild, eccentric, promiscuous... it's hard to descibe her in only one word. Gia Marie Carangi was more than any of it. She is considered as one of the first and leading supermodels of her time and still has a huge impact in the fashion world.

In the 60's and 70's, magazine editors and photographs usually chose to work with blonde models like Lauren Hutton and Jean Shrimpton but in late 70's they got tired of them and  needed ''new face''. Gia was the perfect one. Philly born and raised with Italian and Irish ancestry, Gia was an exotc beauty for designers and photographs. 

Gia never had an easy life. Her mother left her father when she was 11 and she never gave her the attention that she desired. In her adolescent years, she was a huge David Bowie fan. She even cut her hair and shaved off her eyebrows to look like him. Later, she bonded with ''the Bowie kids'', a group of obsessive David Bowie fans who emulated Bowie's weird and glam style. She liked Bowie's fashion preferences, outspoken bisexuality and ambiguous gender play. After all, she was a lesbian or bisexual.


After coming to New York, she immediatelly became a superstar working with the most famous designer houses such as Giorgio Armani, Christian Dior, Versace... Photographs liked her because she was natural and spontaneous. She posed nude without complaint and dressed in men's clothes. A true wild child. She never missed to go out and party till the morning. Her beauty brought her a few Vogue and Cosmopolitan covers, as well as, numerous other magazines. With pale skin, limpid brown eyes and dark brown wavy hair, Gia redefined the fashion industry's standard of beauty.

But later, she started experimenting  with drugs. First cocaine then heroin and after only 2 years her popularity started to decline.She walked out on shoots or fell asleep during jobs. Her drug use was preventing her from working at anything close to her full capacity as a model.
She was in rehab few times but unsuccessfully. In mid-80's she found out that she got AIDS and died in 1986. She was only 26 years old and is the first women who is known that died of AIDS.

In 1990''s there's a film about her called simply ''Gia'' starring Angelina Jolie. Although she was brilliant no one can be like Gia. 
It's essential to know who she was because without her probably the model industry would be poorer and look different today. Mybe, there wouldn't be Cindy Crawford, Kendall Jenner, Cara Delevingne... who knows?

Written by: Antonia Mandić

No comments:

Post a Comment