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The Choreography of Fashion, With Mamiiwataa
NCO 075
2023-06-30
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by
0xD7BdE63AFAB2E1aEe2df71176F4043D3dcf97C40

Amy, it's such a pleasure having you. I admire your work so much, you’ve worked as a model for brands like Gucci, Ottolinger, Panconesi, and more. Your versatility extends beyond modeling, as you utilize your body as a canvas for expressive performances. I'm eager to learn more about you.

D: Can you please introduce yourself, share your background, hobbies, and how you initially entered the world of fashion?

A: So my name is Aminata, but I go as Amy because that's what my mother always calls me since I was a child. I was born and raised in Dakar, Senegal, and came to Toulouse, France at the age of eleven. From my youngest years, I have always felt a bond with everything related to creation. I was always trying to find ways to express myself through writing, singing, dancing, art, etc. I specialized in literature and theater when I was in high school.

I entered the enchanting world of fashion when I was just 18 years old. Contacted by my mother agent Mollie Dendle on Instagram, I jumped on the opportunity because it had been one of my aspirations for a few years back then. One thing led to another, and I signed with IMG Model first and started my career then.

D: As a model, your body becomes an integral part of shaping the brand's narrative by engaging with different narratives, elements, spaces, and movements. Do you perceive the artistic importance of this role while modeling?

A: I've always seen the modeling scene as a place where I can incarnate a character, give life to the products, a way for people to feel represented. As an African woman, I felt it was really important to show my peers that they also have a place in this mean society.

I have two little sisters, and I don't want them to grow up feeling left aside or not seeing their true worth. It's a form of activism.

There's also the artistic side of all of it. For example, Panconesi. I did the "Gioielli di famiglia" campaign with them and felt absolutely proud because the whole concept was really genius. Seeing myself in that frame adorned with these incredible pieces of jewelry. As a fan of the Renaissance movement and Greek and Latin civilization, I truly felt beautiful.

D: I'm intrigued by your recent performance at 3537org in Paris. Could you provide us with some insights into this experience?

A: So, as I said earlier, I specialized in theater in high school. I've always been passionate about it, so when I received a message from Marvin M'toumo asking me to play in her piece, it was like everything I had aspired to is coming to life. "Concours de Larmes" takes place in an Arena slash Runway scene, where the audience gets to see in front of them the intense incarnations of their deepest fears, the emotions they try so bad to run away from.

From evil heartbroken fairies to a crying demon straight out of your darkest nightmares, Regis the priest, embodied by Davide-Christelle Sanvee, pushes you to the abyss of your soul and drowns you into the oceans of beauty and pain.

I love the poetry of this amazing project I'm part of. The costumes are made out of upcycled materials and turned into these magical pieces of fashion, and they absolutely fascinate me. The whole journey unleashes so much as the message we are trying to convey, which is to let go and cry, actually really resonates with a lot of things I have been in the past. Being someone who always used to hold my emotions in and never truly showed them, it has helped me a lot.

D: Do you have any memorable stories from your fashion career you would like to share with us?

A: My first and craziest anecdote is the first time ever I went to Paris to meet agencies that were interested in me. But before that, I had to go to my first-ever casting for Dior, with Michelle Lee as the casting director. So it was my first-ever time going to Paris or even going to another city in France. I arrived at the train station and was extremely lost. It was raining like crazy, and I had to find heels for the casting. I was also really stressed out because my casting was in 30 minutes, and I had no idea how to take the train and was really afraid to get lost. I spent 10 minutes under the rain trying to figure out how to get there but also trying to find a store to get heels from. I ended up taking an Uber, which cost me 48€, and when I got there, I asked this guy if there were any stores to buy shoes from. He told me I could go to Avenue Montaigne.

I walked there, soaking wet, and when I got there, all I saw was Gucci, Valentino, Dior, etc. So I got to the casting soaking wet, with heavy platform destroyed shoes when all the other girls had 11cm heels, and it was pretty funny.

I didn't get it, but at least I signed with IMG Worldwide the next day and was really happy about it!!

D: Lastly, what exciting ventures are you currently pursuing? What aspects of your present and near future spark your enthusiasm?

A: Well, to be honest, I don't really know where I'm going from now on. As you can tell, I am just a passionate person who lets life take them to places. But I guess I would love to become an actress and play in movies. But for now, I am just enjoying everything and everyone that comes my way as I am a young 21-year-old girl trying to find my way into this world. But I am really grateful for everything I have!

All images courtesy from Amy
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