Saturday, November 21, 2009
Daul Kim - DEAD - Pressures of the industry lead to death???
In a photograph taken only a few weeks ago, the supermodel – described as Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld's new "muse" – was the star of the fashion house's latest campaign advertising handbags.
She had dyed her long dark hair blonde and was, unusually for a model known for her sulky catwalk pout, smiling broadly.
Now investigators, family and friends are trying to discover why the 20-year-old South Korean chose to end her young life after she was found hanged at her Paris apartment.
The emergency services were called to Kim's home in the trendy 10th arrondissement of Paris on Thursday by a man, reported to be her boyfriend. Police say they are investigating her death, but suspect suicide.
As they piece together her final hours, they are examining Daul's own testimony from a blog she kept, in which she had written of being profoundly depressed and lonely for some time.
"She was an excellent model, but she used to say she had hard times off the job," said one modeling agent who preferred to remain anonymous yesterday.
Kim, who was known in fashion circles for being feisty and sensitive, wrote about the high and lows of her hectic life on the international modeling world, her feelings and her life off the catwalk in her blog at http://iliketoforkmyself.blogspot.com/.
Some posts were stream of consciousness jottings, others resembled a young girl's attempts at poetry. She wrote of her love for her guinea pigs, for the author Tolstoy, how much she missed her friends and her mother, her homesickness and her apparent love-hate relationship with her home city Seoul.
The 5 ft 10 ins Kim had modeled for the cream of haute couture houses including Chanel, Dries van Noten and Alexander McQueen and was a regular on catwalks in New York, Milan and Paris. She recently did a photo shoot for Top Shop and was described as Karl Lagerfeld's new star.
She began her modeling career in South Korea where she was spotted by Vogue magazine. In 2007 she was propelled onto the global stage and on the road to becoming a supermodel. Explaining the title of her blog at that time, she insisted it had nothing to do with self-harm or wanting to kill herself.
It is accompanied by photos of paintings by Kim, one showing her with a fork in her head, but she wrote: "I'm definitely not depressed, and I don't want to kill myself I don't want to die."
In other posts, however, Kim, who sometimes called herself Daulmonster revealed a troubled personal life and profound mood swings; she frequently wrote about being depressed, admitted she suffered from insomnia, was often lonely and tired from overwork.
One of her first posts in April 2007, states: "My life as dual was so miserable and lonely. Please join my loneliness in another world. I love you all'. Sometime later she has added: 'KIDDING. I'm fine. Just tired.'
In her writing Kim revealed that she had left school with she was around 15 years old, and spent her days hanging out in the apartment of a neighbour who was a famous artist. She also told how she would sleep when depressed, and once stayed in bed for three days. In July she blamed a food allergy for her mood swings. "Why me?" she asked. "I never eat so much junk food, I don't drink like an alcoholic, I don't do drugs, I don't party I'm so quiet and I don't starve myself "
But often, just hours or days after writing that she was feeling down, her spirits would appear to have rebounded.
Much has been made of the fact that the last post on her blog was entitled 'hi to forever'. But most of the posts, dating back to April 2007 are entitled 'hi to ' something. Her last post early on Wednesday morning is accompanied by a You Tube clip of the house record 'I Go Deep' by British DJ artist Jim River.
Friends say the constant traveling that she had done since a teenager and the pressures of the fashion industry were beginning to take their toll. She had already announced she wanted to move into painting and video film making.
One friend said she had become fed up with modelling and its demands, considering her life was too frenetic and incompatible with forming the sort of long-term relationship she hankered for.
"Her agency was often trying to get hold of her on her mobile, but she refused to be available all the time," said one.
Her modeling agency and friends said she would be sadly missed. Ahn Seong-Jin, a photographer who often worked with Kim, said she was bursting with ideas and creativity.
"She was able to make various looks and postures on catwalks that can hardly be matched by others. She had an optimum body shape and an amazing capacity to adapt herself to changing circumstances."
In August, Kim wrote on her blog: "I need to learn how to stop destroying myself, stop being hard on myself and be nice to myself." Tragically, it appears, she could not stop herself.
*Article provided by: Telegraph UK
Daul Kim was with Marilyn Models Paris