Nov 23, 2009

by English Muse

South Korean supermodel Daul Kim — who was a regular on catwalks in New York, Milan and Paris — was found dead after an apparent suicide last week at her luxury flat in Paris.  According to the Daily Telegraph of London, her death was discovered after she left a series of messages on her now closed Blogspot blog — I Like to Fork Myself – saying she was lonely and depressed.

So sad. What a beautiful girl she was.  Do you think the fashion industry puts too much pressure on its young models? I’ve been thinking a lot lately about Gemma Ward, who announced last week that she was taking a break from modeling. The press has been relentless recently in posting unflattering pictures of Gemma,  who gained weight following the death of her boyfriend, actor Heath Ledger. The girl is gorgeous, no matter how much she weighs.

I guess this is a dark subject for a Sunday evening. But it was on my mind, so I thought I would post it.

(Photo above via Lost and Found)

This entry was posted on Monday, November 23rd, 2009 at 3:16 am. It is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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26 Responses to “Death of a Supermodel”

  1. Margaret says:

    That's so depressing:( I'm so sad that she died! How awful.

    I think the fashion industry does put too much pressure on the models to be a certain way and to look a certain way. Its something that can take a toll on a person.

  2. Sallie Ann says:

    I think they do put pressure on models, but I think they do it because it sells the fantasy that fashion often leans on. If consumers didn't take the bate so often it might get better? Not sure.

  3. Simply Mel says:

    Tragic and sad. A very complex issue….

  4. Caroline says:

    That blog was open less than 6 hours ago — I was reading it Sunday afternoon.

    As a model myself, I don't think being one is enough to drive an otherwise mentally healthy individual to suicide, any more than any other high-pressure job would. I do think, however, that it could certainly cause someone with an obvious mental frailty (Daul's possibly bipolar mood swings were well-known in the industry) to be pushed over the edge.

    While no one can judge what happened to this obviously troubled woman, it certainly makes you wonder what help, if any, was offered to her by those around her. Did she have anyone with her on a day-to-day basis who genuinely loved her for her and recognized the deep trouble she was in? Or were there only people who saw her as a commodity?

  5. Pamela Terry and Edward says:

    I think beautiful women have a difficult time. Always expected to look amazing, with everyone everywhere on the lookout for every microscopic flaw. God forbid they meet up with an extra pound or two, or a new wrinkle or three. Add to that all the jealously thrown their way from other women. One must have a very strong foundation, and a very strong sense of self to survive.

  6. Lucy in the Sky says:

    I couldn't believe she died when I first read the news. she had so much personality…how could she have died so soon?

    on another note, Gemma said she hasn't quit modeling and she'll be back in the business next year. and yes, she's GORGEOUS!

  7. Ethereal Edge says:

    Ok so I do understand the whole idea that the fashion word puts pressure on girls. I myself know first hand as I have been in the modeling industry since I was 14 and just did Toronto Fashion week. Yes they like a certain weight and such but I am sort of on their side partially because it terrifies me to wonder what people would look like if there werent expectations. Also the modeling agencies, or at least any dencent upstanding one though they do want woman skinny they want them healthy they teach us models to tone up and be the best we can be in the right way. Any girl who decids to do so in an unhealthy way its not the industries fault it is the girl or guys choice.

    sorry I'm just saying

    and it is sad to lose one of my own.

  8. Ququ♥ says:

    damn I cant look at the blog.
    oh wells.

    its sad that she took her own life. I guess it goes to show that people who have everything aren't always happy

  9. Jo says:

    I just wanted to wish you good luck on your first Huffington Post story!! Yay!!

  10. Dominique says:

    Yeah, I didn't buy that Gemma had really quit. I was like, "Sure, honey, sure."

    But when I saw that Kim article, I think people should have seen this coming and helped her. That industry is poisonous and isn't Karl whatever (that designer with Chanel) super critical of bigger models. He probably isn't the best person to be a "muse" for.

    I feel bad for her. But it's also upsetting that people around her didn't help more. Com'on, that blog was a cry for help.

  11. Erimentha says:

    so sad–i didnt know gemma is quitting modelling! thats horrible that people are being so mean about her putting on weight. gemma is gorgeous and lovely and PERFECT, no matter how sad she is :(

    xxx

  12. Solanah says:

    Sad indeed, I was actually just thinking about the model who passed away about a year ago from undereating. There is too much pressure for sure, and this is the first I've heard of Gemma leaving the industry, she's been my favorite for years :(

  13. Maggie May says:

    I seem to be hearing about a lot of suicides lately. It's terribly sad, to be in so much pain.

    And that makes my blood boil, about Gemma Ward. Fucking media.

  14. Hermione says:

    Such a sad thing, as suicide always is..
    If she was bi-polar, it's hard to know if it was the world she was in or something she would always have been at risk for.
    But I personally believe from the glimpses I've had into that environment, that it has to be a combination of so many factors. I think that that world in general (not only fashion but any kind of show business) has a tendency to attract a lot of cynics (not only though) who are willing to take advantage of other, less manipulative people.
    If you come into that world as an innocent, inexperienced and lonely teenager with low self esteem (because I think that's pretty normal at that age) and you automatically get exposed to excessive drugs, money, alcohol and sex (sometimes abusive), it's bound to affect you in some way. Most of these girls are also far away from their own home and their culture, parents and friends, which means that their sense of identity will get affected too…
    Being a model is also being an image, and if you're constantly being met after who people think you are because of what you l o o k like, I don't think it's very healthy and probably very frustrating. Same for celebrities.
    I'm always amazed that parents allow their kids (because that's what they are, kids) to get into that stuff at the age that they do.
    It's not a coincidence they say you need to be strong to survive in that business, because you do, sadly enough.

  15. Amiadera says:

    Daul kim's death really affected me. I read some parts of her blog, trying to understand…
    She was obviously very intelligent and had a personality of her own.Despite being surrounded by so many people, despite the frequent partying and socializing, she seemed very very lonely and depressed.

    I don't think one should simplify the matter and put all the blame on the fashion industry. It is true that it is quite a superficial world that treats models in particular, a bit like objects.In that sense, very reflective persons like Daul was, may find it hard to bear. It takes a lot of inner strength to put up with some of the constraints of the job.
    Daul seemed to have a deep yearning for love;that to me explains part of the issue. In order to be strong, you need to love yourself and be supported by family and close friends.

    May she rest in peace.

  16. Adriana says:

    there is alot of talk about this poor girl in the blogosphere…so sad. I'm also aware of what the media is doing to Gemma, she is a stunning Aussie model! They should give her, and all girls, a big break. We are who we are and we look how we do

  17. Mag says:

    oh…so sad!! I guessed that she had many pressure.

  18. bohemianstranger says:

    I was so surprised to read about this. I was admiring her photo shoots on a mag just about 2 days before the news of her death. So shocking.

    By the way, good luck to your new endeavors. :)

  19. giulia says:

    Yes it puts too much pressure. But, then, so do we because all of us participate in it. Yes, yes, we do. I've been on the inside of these instances (in the literary world) & it's just too easy to think we know everything — or much really. Everything is so complicated. But I still think (know) that the sorts of pressure that can come are no match for someone who is thought to "have it all." Particularly attractive people who would seem to "have everything." As for people who think that Karl et al have nothing to do with it: bollocks. (As my mother would say. As an American, I can't type what I'd like to & be decent.)

  20. Cristine says:

    Very depressing. Its,sad that she took her own life.

  21. Yoli says:

    I found out today and was shocked and saddened. The industry is a rough one to navigate specially for one so young and that is where a lot of problems come in. You have to have a strong support system.

  22. ...Seyma... says:

    oh poor her :(

  23. Melissa A. says:

    I think there is way too much pressure and it never seems to be let up. I don't think I have ever seen too many models with a smile on their face where you could tell it was genuine.

  24. PINKFLAMINGO says:

    So sad :C

  25. Sarah says:

    This broke my heart when I heard about it. She was such a beautiful girl and her blog was amazing.

  26. Christine says:

    Such a sad story… it is hard because I do think that the modeling industry has extreme expectations (that don't do any good for the self esteem of young girls in our society) but there are so many other high pressure jobs out there. It takes a strong sense of self and a good support group to make it through such intense pressure.

    I am new to your blog from Blabbing About Blogs :)

fin.
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