The Week's Genetically Blessed

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

c.2014 New York Times News Service


NEW YORK — One of the great things about models is that they keep making new ones. The supply is inexhaustible. Not to worry if it seems that the well of East London lads or toned Iowa farm boys or wan Eastern European starvelings may dry up. There is always another mall to scout, another vein to mine.

“Worse comes to worse,” one fashion wag said. “They can always frack for new ones.”

An abiding pleasure of New York Fashion Week (or fashion weeks anywhere, really) is observing the spectacle of these genetically blessed creatures darting around a metropolis most have never seen before, consulting their little laminated maps as they run to castings, sometimes as many as 40 in a week.

That they hail from all points of the globe is an added attraction. And in that sense, New York Fashion Week resembles the U.N. General Assembly, although with better dentistry and firmer abs.

There, for instance, in the lineup at Timo Weiland’s spring 2015 show stands Roberto Sipos, an angular blond with pillow lips and knife-blade cheekbones. Already, the 19-year-old born in Romania and discovered in Hungary is a regular on the international circuit.

There at a David Hart show held in Industria Superstudio is Eugon McNeil, an 18-year-old from Cape Town, now in his second season.

Standing nearby in the lineup at the same show is Andy Walters, a genial 22-year-old from a suburb of Milan, and, alongside him, Alex Cunha, a godlike Brazilian once rated by the obsessive modeling website as an Industry Icon.

“Shhhhh!” Cunha hissed good-naturedly when a reporter asked about his age. “I’m 27,” he added, ancient in a business in which age is calculated somewhat like dog years. “Don’t tell.”