Greta Bellamacina: exclusive interview

07/08/2014

Greta Bellamacina | Exclusive interview with Fashioned by Love | AllSaints Autumn/Winter 2012 Campaign (photography: Aitken Jolly, creative director: Wil Beedle), both c/o Viva London
Before she turned 24, Greta Bellamachina has published two books, Kaleidoscope and To December - A Devotion to She, worked with Vogue, Tatler, The Telegraph, Nylon, Purple Lula and CR Fashion Book, appeared in Burberry, All Saints, Vivienne Westwood and Hemmerle campaigns, graduated from King's College London with a BA in English, filmed a short Woody Allen-inspired story, A Love Poem San Francisco, for Harper's Bazaar, was shortlisted as the Young Poet Laureate of London and commissioned to create poetry by the Royal Academy for their annual summer show...

She is a 21st century poétesse, model, artist, explorer and dreamer with a unique talent of channelling her love for the language and fashion fantasy into the words delicately woven through the sentences of her poems rhyming reality with reverie.

Greta's world is a fascinating one. It's in the faded pages of old books and occasional glossy tear-outs, in the travels around the globe and the train journeys, the xylophone melodies of the airports and the soft lullaby sounds of the moving wheels, the lights and noise of the big cities and the whispering rain outside the window...

And it was a privilege to become a part of her life for a moment when I got an opportunity to interview this beautiful and incredibly talented girl.

Greta Bellamacina | Exclusive interview with Fashioned by Love | Luxure magazine 2013
There’s a line in one of the Patti Smith’s songs “There’s no equation to explain the division of the senses…” But wouldn’t you agree that poetry can, in fact, be such an equation, the winning formula? 
I guess I would agree, it is one way to extract the intimacy of an emotion. A poem like a song is an interpretation of the senses, I guess the question is how well it is done?  And how it resonates? 

When and why did you start writing? 
I started writing quite young. I always kept some kind of diary or had a notepad on the go. My father is a musician and would always try to get me to write song lyrics but they seemed to manifest themselves into poems.

What was the first thing you wrote about?
It  was  probably  about  the  natural  world  like  the  change  in  shadows,  the night time, the endlessness of the sky, ghosts. I do remember writing lots of short  plays  at  one point  and  making  my siblings  perform the  parts  to  my parents. 

Do you have a favorite word? The one that sound most comforting or musical?
I don’t know if I am drawn to one word; but there are a few themes I like to revisit, like the revolution of travel, place, climate, love… Most recently I am doing lots of projects inspired by Surrealism.

Is poetry something that enhances our reality? Or a form of escapism “kicking away the ordinary world”? And has writing changed your perception of  the world in any way?
I think it might be a bit of both. I was recently walking back to my apartment in the early hours with a friend who told me about the concept of Dreamtime, which is basically the idea that the city dreams up its people, the roads, walls, bricks contain the ghosts of present, future and past souls. The world is part of a deeper system of reality - I like that idea, it definitely enhanced parts of my writing.  

Are there any particular corners and places in this universe where you feel most inspired?  What is your creative process like?
I like travelling by train in different cities, I think it is an inspired setting for writing  and  new  ideas,  as  you  are  somehow  part  of  the  ecology  of  the landscape.  I am also a big appreciator of nature and feel at peace in a park, or on some wild roadside stop off. 

You  have  been  involved  in  the  Climate  Revolution  Poetry  Project  working alongside Vivienne Westwood. Do you believe that poetry can be a kind of beauty that will “save the world”?
I think art creates culture whether it is poetry, fashion, and music. I think it can educate  and  influence  people  from all  arrays  of  life  and  that  is  invaluable regardless. Vivienne Westwood often refers to Mathew Arnold’s view on cultureand art creating ones ‘best self'.

How can poetry and fashion create a perfect synergy?
I think because the nature of fashion is married to some kind of statement. Such as I think Vivienne Westwood is someone who uses fashion to platform her thoughts very well. I think poetry does that too. 

What do you find most fascinating about fashion?
Because  its  creative,  and  as  well  as  skillful.   I  like  the  idea  of  wearing something for practicality like a long coat sheltering from the rain, but also exposing something externally about yourself through the way you wear it. 

Your fashion CV includes Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, All Saints, Burberry and most recently Hemmerle. Why did you choose this industry and how did you get into it?
I think has always been a part of growing up in London, and being surrounded by interesting people and their  style  being a part  of  that.  I  kind of  fell  into modeling and working in fashion - when I was 18 I worked for Vogue US helping to research for the book The World in Vogue: People, Party’s and places’. And I met a photographer there who put me in touch with his friend who was a model booker in London.

Apart from modeling and writing, you have also made a beautiful film, A Love Poem San Francisco filled with the air of dreaminess and nostalgia. What is the behind-the-scenes story?
Thank  you,  me  and  my  friend  the  director  and  musician  Jacob  Perlmutter wanted to make a fashion film, which had some kind of narrative. I think we both grow up watching Woody Allen films and thought paying homage to his film Manhattan seemed like a fun thing to do. 

Are there any other talents you have that we may not be aware of? 
Hmm, not sure if it’s a talent- but I do have a good memory. 

And  what  about  your  future?  Is  it  going  to  be  poetry?  Writing?  Drawing? Filming? Do you have a before-I-turn-30 plan?
I want to keep making art - keep questioning and continue to travel, edit and work with inspiring people.  I have lots of projects I would like to pursue; I love the medium of film.



***

7 THINGS ABOUT GRETA

5 words that best describe you… Gentle, thoughtful, unsettled, realist, open-minded 

Favourite quote… A new favorite is one by my friend the poet Robert Montgomery’s quote- ‘All palaces are temporary palaces’. 

Favourite reads... All  Alice Oswald poetry, Songtimes - By Bruce Chatwin, A Season in Hell -  by Arthur Rimbaud, Voices of the First Day - by Robert Lawlor and most recently I have been very inspired by Surrealist poets André Breton and  Giséle Prassinos.

Favourite dessert… I'm not much of a dessert person… maybe, ice-cream 

Favourite season… Autumn, season of gold.  

Guilty pleasure… International phone calls and staying up all night… 

When you do feel the happiest? When I am travelling, when I am creating art with friends, when I am having a true connection with some or something. 

***

Greta Bellamacina is represented as a Talent by Viva London. For enquiries, please contact Viva Model Management London

Photo source: Luxure magazine 2013 (photography: Alex Chabala), AllSaints Autumn/Winter 2012 Campaign (photography: Aitken Jolly, creative director: Wil Beedle), both c/o Viva London

14 comments:

  1. very interesting interview!

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  2. awesome! I like your blog ❤
    I would be happy if we could follow each other??
    Let me know :)

    http://anngrigorieva.blogspot.com


    http://anngrigorieva.blogspot.com

    http://anngrigorieva.blogspot.com

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  3. She seems to be very talented, I really admire this kind of persons! Love your interview!

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  4. Wow that's quite an impressive curriculum! What an inspiring young woman!

    http://bellapummarola.blogspot.it/

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  5. Talk about feeling unaccomplished after reading about this lovely young lady! Thanks for sharing her story, what an inspiration.

    xx Hélène
    www.FashionOverReason.com

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  6. Amazing!!!
    Wonderful pics hun!
    Wish you a fantastic Thursday!
    http://www.milanotime.net

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  7. An angel, isn't she. A very poetic soul, a true inspiration. Perhaps she could give us some tips as to what she did to accomplish so much?

    Edita
    http://www.pret-a-reporter.co.uk

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  8. This woman is amazing.. Thanks for making me discover this :)

    Bisous !
    Sofia
    http://nuagedemoutons.blogspot.fr/

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  9. Goodness, Greta makes me feel quite unambitious and I don't think that's something I've ever been called before! A wonderful interview, Natalia.
    xox,
    Cee

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  10. Fabulous interview! Everything about her is so charming. I love that she writes, loves to travel and is a realist. So beautiful!

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  11. С большим интересом читала Ваше интервью,Наташенька!

    Очень талантливая девушка Greta Bellamacina.
    Просто талант от природы,да ещё какой талантище!
    Знаете как говорят: "мудрая душа" у нее..............это значит что ее жизненный опыт еще совсем небольшой,но она наделена с рождения восхитительным талантом видеть,чувствовать й самое главное,умением выразить все в своем творчестве( не важно даже в какой бы то ни было области).
    Это ЧУДО!
    Спасибо огромное,Наталия Вам за этот пост:)))*

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  12. Wow--- what beautiful words-- and this is only in an interview! I will have to familiarize myself with her work, she is so impressive.

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