Cultured Magazine

Fall 2015

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126 CULTURED Fernando Mastrangelo: You represent a generation of growing social media celebrities that have taken their vision into a realm of mass appeal through avenues that didn't exist too long ago. What was your intention when you started? Pari Ehsan: I created @PariDust to establish a creative existence for myself where I could bring value to the realm of digital content creation. I was fascinated by these "fashion bloggers" and the cult followings they had created for themselves. I had it on my mind for some time that I would love to create imagery that explored the nexus between art and fashion, and hence, the idea took form. When did you realize that you had touched on something special? Was there a tipping point? Right away I felt like I had found this magical combination of elements I was excited about. I think there have been two specific tipping points for me. The first came about nine months in, when Buzzfeed did a piece on me. I was in Marfa at the time with no service and one night I got back to my hotel and my phone was just going off with all of these new Instagram followers. I didn't even know what Buzzfeed was at the time! The second tipping point came when the Council of Fashion Designers of America nominated me for their new "Fashion Instagrammer of the Year" award in 2014. That's when the fashion world really opened up to me and I was able to pull the designers I really wanted to wear, and take my fashion and art pairings to the level I'd envisioned. Have you been able to make a business out of Pari Dust? Has it become a full-time job? It's definitely a full-time job. It has been quite a surreal journey. Mostly, I have been collaborating with brands and people that I believe in. It's very important to me that I remain authentic and always uphold the idea that art is truly the most pure and highest form of expression. What have been some of the most unexpected things that have come from this experience? Every day holds the element of surprise or possibility. I think I'm always shocked when someone I greatly admire expresses genuine excitement or enthusiasm about my work. When an artist can't wait to see what I'll wear to shoot their show, that is very encouraging to me. Also, when you're obsessed with what you do—it's crazy how quickly and miraculously things transpire. What do you feel is your ultimate goal for the Pari Dust brand that you're building? And how is that idea evolving as time goes on? The core concept is to educate readers on art DIGITAL MASTER Pari Ehsan,the Instagram phenom who has garnered over 200,000 followers with editorials bringing together art and fashion, takes a pause from posing to talk about the evolution of @PariDust. BY FERNANDO MASTRANGELO PHOTO BY TYLOR HOU

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