Feature: All that she wants – Ismini Papavlasopoulou

Text: Ismini Papavlasopoulou/ Commentary: Danai Dragonea / Photography: Anouk Morgan

I want to enter an airplane and travel to a place I’ve never been before. In places away from big cities; like Machu Picchu in Peru, Iguazu waterfalls between Brazil and Argentina, Annapurna sierra in Nepal, in tropical islands in south Asia. To mix with different cultures, see new things and people I haven’t yet met. Spend my time with those I love, those I bond with, becoming a team. Travelling constantly means being far away from those I wish I had near me and I try to make the most of our time together.
When I am far, I go discovering; a museum in Berlin, London’s river, the entire New York. Cinema, theatre, concerts, all in different languages. Travelling gives me a sense of security, a departure is always followed by a return. Returning to everything familiar and then another departure to discover what remains unknown.
It is important to be able to survive. It is a great freedom being independent and modelling has offered me that. Camera, click, shooting. I feel like an actress, every time turning into something new, taking on board a different role. Silently. My body and movement are the tools of expression. I don’t admire people but the result of their work. I don’t even like the word ‘role model’. I do however, have great respect for women who managed to influence at times more difficult than ours. Dorothea Lange for example, a photographer of previous century, for her representation of the Great Depression or Janis Joplin who is one of the few female voices in a male dominated rock scene. I am impressed by the way Annie Leibovitz begun her career, following Rolling Stones for Rolling Stone magazine on their ’75 tour. I am touched by the way Patty Smith turns poetry into music. I don’t like doing the same things for too long. I am bored and I get into a routine and I am scared of routine more than air turbulence. I like changing scenery, seeing new things, maintaining my enthusiasm.


When Ismini Papavlasopoulou strides on the catwalk, it looks as if she is leading the rest of the girls forward, she has the right expression and she moves me in such a way that I have to go backstage and congratulate her. We met in London, I think it was backstage after the Bora Aksu show and despite her being very tall and very beautiful I remember that she didn’t look intimidating. Ismini has since been photographed for international magazines, was been on catwalks around the world and keeps on traveling and looking cool when there is panic all around her.