This week we are keeping it cosy with our first full home feature! Models in the Raw has always been about places of the heart, and as much we love shooting on the streets we can’t deny feeling particularly privileged whenever we get a private invitation. Interiors are a kind of more intimate landscape, intriguing us with details that hint back at the life and taste of their inhabitants. So we hope you’ll enjoy our meeting with Marie as much as we did!
Thank you for having us, Marie! How is your family house in Vienna your personal hide-away and place of the heart?
My family house is the one place I get to be by myself and actually BE myself. Since I work in an industry where you are always around people, I love to come back home, sit in my room or living room, read a book or watch TV and be a normal teenage girl. The industry is very demanding and model apartments are not always the prettiest, therefore coming home is the time where I can relax and enjoy the pleasure of having a warm and wonderful house.
For this project we are shooting mostly on film, partly using very old cameras. You told us, you have a sort of Vivian Maier story in your family: your grandmother took a lot of photos but never had them developed. She just stored all those rolls in a suitcase. How big was the surprise finding the suitcase many years later and what did you discover when you finally had those pictures developed?
Finding the pictures felt great because my grandmother died when I was only 7 years old and, sadly, I do not have a lot of good memories of her. She got very sick when I turned 4 years old and never recovered until her death. Finding those pictures warmed my heart because I saw my grandmother not only as a teenager but also as a healthy woman. The pictures showed the life she had lived before she became sick. I still look at some of them when I miss her.
And did this influence the way you feel about photography?
Yes, because photography can paint a picture of a person and the way he lives. Also, a persons face expression varies on all sorts of pictures and having to keep a moment like that in your hands is precious.
You grew up surrounded by books, music and works of art. Is there a special piece that you are particularly fond of?
I don’t really have a special piece of reading. It was always hard for me to read when I was little, because I did not like it much. The older I got, the more pleasure I found in reading and listening to music. Music is a big part of my life, since it is my father’s profession. I love listening to him sing and perform, it makes me very proud. I must say I grew fond of a music piece he had performed a lot when we were in Japan for his tour a few years ago. It’s Die Fledermaus (The Bat) by Johann Strauss. I watched it about 10 times already and still love it. I got to see it every time he performed in Japan and the more often I saw it, the more I liked it. That’s also why Japan has a special meaning to me.
As a kid you played piano, then quit it for horse riding, which you had to quit to pursue modelling. Have you always been so open about all new chances life may bring up to you?
No, quitting horse riding cost me a lot of will power. Quitting playing the piano not so much. With horse riding I took care of a real creature and I built up a loving relationship towards my horse. It was really hard to quit, but I gave it up, because modelling meant a lot to me and I loved it. I am open for what life may bring and very excited to find out what my destiny in life is.
Is there anything you wish to go back to later, when you have more time?
Yes, horse riding again. Whenever I went to the stable I got to forget every little thing that bothered me in life and all the stressful situations a day can bring with it. It was an incredible feeling. The moment I entered the stable, I got to forget all my obligations for a few hours in order to spend time with what I really enjoyed and loved to do. It gave me a lot of energy for the rest of the day and filled me with positive thinking.
You told us you are not really the one who hangs out at fancy after-show parties much. What are the perks of being a model that make up for not having time to ride a horse?
I tend to go home after a job, because the industry and its clients demand well rested, fresh-looking models. I think it is very important to separate work and free time “fun” like going out to parties. I must say it is not always easy to reject the temptations, but it is something I have learned over the years. The perks of modelling are others: I learned to stand on my own, I get to spend a lot of time with new people and to travel to many different places. I love to travel and I have always loved to face new challenges. On top of that, I am only 19 years old and I get to earn my own money. It feels great knowing you have worked for your own money. And I spend it very differently now than I used to when I got it from my parents.
With your mother being a director, your father an opera singer and you modelling full time, one could think you’d be predestined for an artistic career. But on the side you are preparing for the entrance exam to study medicine. What drives you to a more scientific route and to medical studies in particular? What kind of doctor would you like to be one day?
I always knew I wanted to become a doctor some day. Since both of my parents are working in the music industry, I get to see a lot AND enough of it. Medicine interests me in particular because it is the kind of study where you have so many different options in life later. I love to be surrounded by people and I love to help them. I wish to become a reconstructive surgeon, so helping people that have had traumatic experiences in life. I think it’s hard enough for a person who has lived through a physical traumatic experience to overcome that trauma (ex. burning victims), but if a person has to live with a deconstruction of its face, leg or other body part, it must be even harder. That’s why I want to help people by making it a little bit easier to forget what happened and see them smile.
And all through the toss and turns of a life out of a suitcase and full of people, experiences and plans, how do you keep your head up and your feet firm on the ground?
I come from a very good home. I know who my real friends are and I always find time to talk to them daily. I have learned that money does not grow on trees and that you have to work hard for something you want. By keeping this in mind, it’s not hard for me to keep my head high and love myself the way I am. The business requires a high self esteem and I recommend for everyone who wants to become a model one day to love yourself the way you are. That is the most important thing, because you will hear a lot of negative things said about you. But don’t forget, you are perfect the way you are. Don’t let other peoples judgments bring you down!
And last but not least, since you share the house with all sort of pets… if you could pick your own inner spirit animal which would you choose?
A little tiger! I look cute and sweet and can be so if people treat me right, but if people mess with me I show a different side that some might consider “not as nice.”