A beautiful boy model is attracting controversy for himself due to his androgynous look and after a magazine cover featuring him was banned at Barnes & Noble, and after lad rag FHM referred to him as “a thing”. Although it probably doesn’t take so much to confuse the FHM readership. If it’s not wearing a suit or sporting football colours, FHMers must assume it’s female and masturbate over it.
The model, Andrej Pejic, is 19 years old and was born in Bosnia but moved to Australia when he was eight, as his family fled his war torn country. He possesses stunning long platinum hair and the kind of exquisite features and angular cheekbones that many an ugly girl would die for, and it is this overt femininity that is deemed controversial and led to FHM fanny rag labeling him a ‘thing’.
But the beautiful young boy, who is muse to French designer Jean-Paul Gaultier, is unbothered by the controversy surrounding his gender. “I know people want me to sort of defend myself, to sit here and be like, ‘I’m a boy, but I wear make-up sometimes.’ But, you know, to me, it doesn’t really matter,” he told New York Magazine in an interview recently.
“I don’t really have that sort of strong gender identity – I identify as what I am. The fact that people are using it for creative or marketing purposes, it’s just kind of like having a skill and using it to earn money.”
In order to compete with female models and so that he keeps his weight down in order to fit into the ridiculously tiny sizes that female models must retain, he works out and tries to keep himself as slim as possible. “Most female models don’t have any muscle mass,” he said. ‘It’s a delicate state to be in.” (Read more about anorexia and models here)
When asked about his sexuality Pejic is more reticent and admits that he attracts both heterosexual men and bi-curious girls, neither of which appeal to him. “I wouldn’t say that I’m really a sexual person. But I do appreciate love, and I would love to experience it someday. I don’t think I have yet.”
Pelic admits that like a lot of children he was curious about girls’ clothes, and bleached his hair blonde and wore girls’ skinny jeans when he was just 13-years old, identify with his females peers at the time.
“The way I need to look, it’s a very personal thing,” he says. “When I started experimenting, it was to make myself feel happy, to look in the mirror and be satisfied. I never did drag or anything like that. It was always that I wanted to be pretty, to look beautiful, as a girl would want to.”
Unable to find success as a model in Australia due to his effeminate looks, he relocated to London, where he was signed by a cheese burger munching model booker whilst he was working at McDonalds.
“I guess professionally I’ve left my gender open to artistic interpretation.” On the subject of his future he is equally honest and admits that he doesn’t know how long his fame will last but would consider writing a book or doing reality TV.”
Andrej Pejic has already appeared in French Vogue and won Model of the Year, but it is the subject of his gender that attracts him the most attention. It is thirty years since the likes of Boy George, Pete Burns and Marc Almond first started blurring the lines between gender in the music industry and men and women have been swapping genders back and forth like a hot potato for centuries in the theatre. British stately homo Quentin Crisp and his gender smudging cohorts were confusing the general public with their eccentric effeminate style from the 1930s onwards. It seems a natural progression that this should spread into the fashion industry. In parts of Asia it is considered very normal for men to dress in female clothing and wear their hair long. Glam rockers such as Aerosmith and Poison wore hair long, extensive make up and feminine clothing. Male goths generally have long hair and wear more make up than Joan Rivers, teamed with long flowing garments. In past centuries fashionable men wore make up, fake beauty spots, lipstick and powdered wigs. Is it really so shocking that a young boy in the fashion industry looks like a girl?
Generic man rags are doing Pejic a favor by calling hime ‘a thing’. That’s a compliment to androgens.
There is nothing wrong or absurd with men wearing women’s clothing or vice versa, if that’s what they want to do. It’s just clothes. There is no reason why they should be different. We were all born naked. Only our boring society dictates what we should and should not be wearing based on what we find when we look inside our pants. How we dress is our opportunity to creatively express who we are. A man in jeans, sneakers and a t-shirt or in a football shirt says way too much about his personality.
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Images: ftape.com, newshopper.sulekha.com, thegorgeousdaily.com, wowzamagazine.com.