Mistakes Is a Good Thing


Mistakes Were Made could be an apropos slogan for the Democrats considering the colossal clobbering they received on November 4 in Washington, but in this case Mistakes Were Made happens to be the title of a riotous play written by Craig Wright, directed by Dexter Bullard and showcasing the extraordinary talent of Michael Shannon.

Shannon plays Felix Artifex a man with big dreams and even bigger failures.  He is a B-List (teetering on C-List) Off-Broadway producer whose character can best be described as one part good guy and three parts BS artist.  Felix is obsessed with three things: bringing Mistakes Were Made to Broadway, contacting his estranged wife and feeding is fish to the point of peril.  The audience is introduced to him sitting in a cluttered office filled with scripts, board games and posters of past pedestrian productions.  Believing that Mistakes Were Made will emancipate him from the lackluster life he has led, the slippery slope Felix rides to utter insanity, then clarity begins with him on the phone trying to convince the Hollywood actor du jour to star in Mistakes Were Made, a play based on the French Revolution.  When the actor begins to edit the script, Felix goes into schmooze mode feeding the actor a line of malarkey longer than 5th Avenue in order to get what he wants.   He then does the same to playwright who refuses to change the play.  With all the lines of his telephone blowing up, Felix slides deeper into an abyss of bombastic blunders as he tries to cajole then bully the young writer into altering his original vision all while desperately attempting to reach his wife and back out of a business deal gone awry.

The only thing keeping him sane is the reflective talks he has with Denise, his fish, while overfeeding her.  He shares with her his dreams of making Mistakes Were Made a smash hit and of the mediocre career he has led which will surely be rectified with this show.  The fish is the perfect reflection of his personality.  Her ambition to eat every pellet of food will ultimately lead to her destruction as Felix’s half-truths will lead to his debacle.  His constant reference to the title Mistakes Were Made is suitable considering he is making so many on his road to glory.  Eventually his zealousness leads to an epic explosion of his dreams and the death of his beloved Denise.  As he sinks to the floor in utter despair, I could not help but focus my eyes on the Sorry board game resting underneath a shelf.  Perhaps that game exquisitely sums up his attitude about the events that have transpired.  As the play closes Felix begins to earn the redemption he so desperately seeks as he ventures to repair the damage that he caused by calling the playwright to extend an olive branch.

So I ask can mistakes be a good thing.  Absolutely when it involves Michael Shannon, he holds this riveting character study on his shoulders with the same ease as Atlas lifting up the world.  Shannon makes Felix a shyster with a soul.  His desire to become greater and repair past errors is relatable and commendable and the manner in which he does it is amusing as hell.  Fueled by great dialogue, Mistakes Were Made is hands down the wittiest show I have seen all season. It is a comical glimpse of what happens behind the scenes of a production before it hits the stage.  Mistakes Were Made will be playing at the Barrow Street Theatre until January 2, any theatergoer that misses this show will themselves have engaged in a folly that is unforgivable.  

Photos:  Ari Mintz

SAMO and OZ in NYC

A Preview of Ugly-Kid Gumo

To create graffiti is to engage in urban guerilla warfare.  Renegades of refinement, graffiti artists take cold, inanimate slabs of concrete and other disregarded objects from our society and manufacture fleeting masterpieces.   The fact that these works are both illegal and transient is what makes this medium one of the most authentic forms of expression and those who lurk in the shadows of night, spray cans in hand, to partake in this illicit act, mavericks of culture.    In the ‘80s, graffiti art was an extension of hip-hop, a subculture emerging from the Bronx that also fused a particular style of music and dancing.  Street artists also started to become recognized as rising stars in the international art scene – artists like Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, who along with Al Diaz created the SAMO Graffiti in the late ‘70s and also signed his early work as SAMO.   

Following along the same vein as these iconic artists is a young street artist from France named Ugly-Kid Gumo.  Gumo was born in France in 1980 near Paris, the same year in which Basquiat began to kill the SAMO legend by writing “SAMO IS DEAD” all over downtown.   Using the raw electricity of the streets as his canvas, Gumo uses his art as a mirror to reflect back to society the Babylonian condition in which it finds itself.  On November 20, I received a slight introduction to the chaos Gumo evolves from when I attended OZ le visage du mal, a single-evening preview of his work.  Using spray paint, photography and other heterogeneous schemes, Gumo related a story that was a stark, unflinching dose of reality.  It was jarring, emotional, pensive and powerful, causing my stomach to stir from the intensity.  Crude faces illustrated on white pieces of paper and posted against a cardboard backdrop exuded the essence of street culture and were reminiscent of Basquiat’s work.  The amalgamation of early ‘90s American and Parisian hip-hop added to the gritty element of Gumo’s chaos. 

While walking around the preview, meticulously ingesting all of Gumo’s art, I was ensnared by the soul of the pieces, which may be Gumo’s true intention.  I was particularly attached to the series of faces constructed from scrapings of graffiti Gumo completed.  With these pieces Gumo accomplished a rare feat – he transformed a momentary work of art into a fresh conversation piece.    Another series that captivated my attention were spray painted faces with heads shaped like keyholes.


As I looked through what appeared to be a keyhole into the primitive faces of Oz, I realize these striking images speak. They speak for the same impoverished people that used mattresses as trampolines, cardboard boxes as dance floors, parks as clubs and trains as canvases.  They speak for the youth that carry their discontentment on their shoulders like backpacks.  Oz is omnipresent – it is New York City, Paris or any place where there is a disconnect with certain members of the community, where people are lost and slip through the cracks.  It is there that Gumo finds the chaos and translates it the world.

Adding to the compelling artwork is Gumo’s personal story.  He is not a man that comes from the ghetto, in fact he was raised in the suburbs, but he identifies with a struggle most people choose to overlook in their quest for recognition and riches.  I find his empathy to be extremely admirable.  It also transforms him from a mere artist to a griot, chronicling the history of our time through mixed-media and poetic expressions.  Gumo is represented in New York by the Marianne Nems Gallery.  The preview was only to wet our appetite for a full scale exhibition coming in March 2011.  Gumo’s work transported me back to the New York City of my youth, where the grit was as thick as the humidity in the summertime.  Before Times Square received consumer-driven porcelain veneers and hip-hop lost its soul.  I am eager to see more of Gumo’s work – it is definitely not the same ole shit.

Photos and Slideshow:  F.A.M.E NYC Editor

Wintuk Begins Its Final Season in Thrilling Fashion

Right before Thanksgiving, there are some staples New Yorkers expect to see in their city – the Rockefeller Christmas tree has arrived, major department stores have unveiled their seasonal window displays and for the last four years Cirque du Soleil has provided a winter wonderland inside Madison Square Garden. 

Wintuk combines the English word “winter” with Inupiaq phonetics and was first created in 2007.   The show centers on a boy named Jaime who lives in a city that has all the characteristics of winter with the exception of one major element, snow (which may be a good thing depending on who you ask).  Jaime craves snow, so much so that he goes on a quest to find it.  He befriends a homeless woman who is actually a shaman from the mystical tundra of Wintuk and they along with Shadow Girl (another friend of Jamie) and Wimpy (a sheepish clown-like figure) begin the search to find the mythical arctic city.   During their exposition, they encounter bumbling thieves, singing lampposts, gigantic fluffy dogs, cranes,  glacier  beasts, people that seem to be constructed without bones and cops that can give T.J. Lavin a run (or should I say jump) for his money.

Cirque du Soleil intended this incarnation of their modern circus to be an introduction to families into their animated world, the success of their four year run is more than a testament to its appeal.   Wintuk is an icy extravaganza for kids of all ages; it is The Wiz on steroids providing maximum visual stimulation.  You will find your eyes and head zipping back and forth from one end of the stage to the other as you attempt to take in this spectacle in its entirety.  The show allows the daredevil in all of us to run free as we live vicariously through the performers as they execute high-flying, body twisting stunts.  It has been years since I have been to a circus, and I was extremely impressed with the sophisticated display in which Cirque du Soleil showcases typical circus acts.  Who needs lions, tigers, bears and elephants on parade when you can view beauty, grace and strength as you are swept out of your seats with amazing theatrical acrobatics? 

The Slack Wire act, completed on a clothesline, features an equilibrist who showcases concentration, form, might and agility all while comically pulling up his pants.  Walking and chewing bubble gum is beyond elementary for the young lady that fuses hip-hop choreography with juggling.  Rola-Bola is a seat cringer that showcases one of the most nimble performers I have ever seen.  Rag Doll is an illustration of what a human could do without a skeletal frame.  This super contortionist makes body twisting look like a piece of cake.  Power Track is a nothing less than electric jolts of power and precision, the tumbling sequences that are performed raises eyelids and keeps mouths on the floor.  The Aerial Straps and Hoops routines were my favorite.  Ethereal and poetic the aerosaltants ascend above the stage and perform a dexterous ballet.  The hoops act is performed by the high priestess of Wintuk.  The skill displayed as she contorts her body while managing to rotate multiple hula hoops on various body parts is the perfect combination of art and athleticism.  When Wimpy utters, “I love you,” in his high pitch tone, I think he carried the sentiment of all the men and teenage boys in the theatre.

And for those New Yorkers that miss seeing flakes fall from the atmosphere, Cirque du Soleil ends the show with a confetti snow shower that outdoes any ticker-tape parade.  The tricks, music and dancing places Wintuk in the winner column for an unconventional family outing, just make sure you remind your kids not to try anything they have seen at home.  Wintuk’s final run at the WAMU theatre at Madison Square Garden will end on January 2, and is a must see.  The smiles, laughter and memories you receive will warm your soul long after the polar production is gone.

J’adore Amor

“Diamonds are forever”, “Every kiss begins with Kay” – the love affair with women and jewelry is an endless one.  More timeless than those ill-fated teenagers from Verona that Shakespeare wrote about long ago and more infinite than the horizon at dawn.  Whether it is purchased at a store on 5th Avenue or on the corner of Canal Street, women (and some men) will always desire to adorn their bodies with jewelry as a personal statement of their style and individuality.  While women (me included) drool over the rings, bracelets, earrings and other glittery trinkets we used to create the perfect ensemble, little thought is given to the artisans that create the pieces of sparkle we decorate our wrists, necks and fingers with.  Designers and brands like Judith Ripka and David Yurman are recognized the world over, and I predict Verna Fogg and Vina Amor will someday be as popular as these designers and brands.

 I first met Verna Fogg during Fashion Week.  Not only did her drop-dead gorgeous visage stand out, her jewelry was killer too.  Bold…contemporary… galvanic Verna Fogg follows a path similar to the road paved by such trailblazers as Alexander McQueen and Thierry Mugler, she creates wearable art.   Her pieces are unique and striking and can enhance jeans and a t-shirt or a red carpet outfit.  Recently, Ms. Fogg granted me the opportunity to learn more about her love for jewelry making, influences and the origins of Vina Amor.


 1. Some women love shoes; others are obsessed with handbags.  Have you always had a love for jewelry?

I’ve always had a passion for jewelry and accessories. For a woman an accessory adds beauty to an outfit, just like make-up adds beauty to a face.   I think earrings are the best compliment to an outfit. They’re always eye-catching because people make eye contact with you first and earrings are the first accessory that is seen. 

 2. What was the first piece of jewelry you ever created?

The first piece of jewelry I ever created was a personally designed flame/leaf-like shaped earring out of colored vinyl. I still use some vinyl in my collections. 

3. Were you inspired by any past or contemporary jewelry designers when you first started creating jewelry?  If so, which ones?

I was never inspired by any other designers when I first started to create jewelry. Not that I don’t like any other designers, but I inspire myself. I think that all designers are somewhat inspired by others in some way. If it’s not the next person who inspires them, it’s other reasons like emotions or incidents that happen and ideas start to stir in their minds. I am more inspired by my many feelings than by other people.  Even angry thoughts have inspired some of my designs. 

4. Tell me about the day when you decided you wanted to build a brand with your designs.

Around springtime, I decided to build my brand (Vina Amor). I kept receiving calls from my local customers to make them pieces for shows, parties and dinners they were attending. And when I notice I was making money, it started to make sense to me to just make Vina Amor a business.

 5. How did you come up with the name Vina Amor?

I have a mixed-race background and I wanted to infuse with some of my Spanish heritage into my brand. “Vina” means to want and to yearn for in Latin and “Amor” of course means love in French.  I want people all over to want and love my jewelry.

 6. How long does it take to manufacture a piece of jewelry – from concept to the finished product?

When it comes to completing one whole Vina Amor piece the shortest time can take about an hour. Time coincides with detail, so the more detailed the more time it takes.  Also the more expensive it can be.

7. At this very moment, which is your favorite piece?

At this moment my favorite pieces are my Picasso collection. I have three versions of them.

8. Describe the feelings you had when you sold your first piece of jewelry.

I didn’t feel like anything because when I sold my first piece I didn’t realize I had a business on my hands.  It wasn’t until I sold a few pieces that it rang bells in my head that I really have something going here. It made me feel talented.  It made me start to design more for others and not just for me.

9. You mentioned in your Concrete Loop interview that you are most inspired by your emotions.  Do you listen to music when you are designing?  If so, what type of music do you listen to?

When it comes to the mood I am in when I am designing, I usually pop in a DVD and watch the same movie over and over again. Sex and the City 1 & 2 and The Social Network have been in heavy rotation lately.  As for music I listen to all types of music.  I have no particular genre that I stick to. 

10. What do you love most about what you do?

What I love most about what I do is thoughts in my head becoming to a real product that I can touch and feel.  The idea of creating ideas is what makes this fun.  I am creating things that are directly from my imagination so it feels like I’m part of every piece that I make. 

11. What fashion brands do you believe are most compatible to your jewelry?

I don’t see Vina Amor being compatible to one particular brand.  It is different enough to be in a class of its own, yet versatile enough to work with any other brand when worn.  I want people to wear my brand in conjunction with all types of other brands to make their appearance what they wish it to be. I want to be the icing for any type of cake.

 12. New York City is one of the fashion capitals of the world, with Brooklyn being one of the most eclectic places on Earth.  How does New York City, Brooklyn in particular influence your jewelry designs?

When ever you are somewhere and they scream out is ‘Brooklyn in the house,’ almost half of the room raises their hand.  There are a lot of different styles and ideas in Brooklyn.  Outside of the diverse styles of people walking around in NYC, I also am influenced by the buildings and things that are part of my everyday environment.  I once made a necklace that looked like the Brooklyn Bridge.  That was one of my early pieces that not too many people have ever seen.

13. Describe the Vina Amor woman.

There is no such thing as a Vina Amor woman.  My vision is one that has any type of woman wearing my jewelry.  So I guess technically everyone is a Vina Amor woman.  And if you’re not a Vina Amor woman, I want to turn you into one.

 14. Currently your jewelry line includes rings, earrings and necklaces.  Will you be adding bracelets or other accessories soon?

Right now Vina Amor consists of earrings, necklaces and rings. Bracelets are now being introduced to the collection. Brooches will join the Vina Amor line as well.  The will always be more to come.  Ideas are limitless. 

15. You have quite a celebrity following.  Tell me some of the celebrities/publications that have worn/featured your jewelry?

When it comes to product placement I have had two winners from ANTM (America’s Next Top Model) Eva (Pigford) Marcielle and Jasleen Gonzalez, BET Host Rocsi from 106&Park and Dawn Richards from Dirty Money.

 16. If you could choose to give one of your pieces to Hillary Rodham Clinton, Sarah Palin or First Lady Michelle Obama, who would you choose and why?

If I had the honor to give any one of these women a piece of jewelry it wouldn’t be anything from my current collection.  I would look at which ever individual it was and I would design a piece that complimented her as a person and match her style.


17. Are you interested in any other areas of the fashion industry?

Yes, I would love to explore other areas of fashion.  But first I want to master the area that I’m currently in.  Once I master this one I can focus on another.

 18. Where would you like Verna Fogg and Vina Amor to be in the next five years?

I want to have Vina Amor as a household name that is well known and desired, but also somewhat exclusive.  I want it to be a line of jewelry that is worn by both celebrities and normal women.  

 19. Besides the website, where can a consumer go to purchase your unique designs?

Currently the best way to get my jewelry is online.  I have a few pieces at Supernova Boutique on Fulton Street in Brooklyn, but since I hand craft and make so many different colors and styles of certain pieces, more people like to order online to get exactly what they want.

20. Christmas is coming soon.   If someone wanted to purchase one of your pieces as a gift, when is the cut off date to place an order?

With the holidays (Christmas) coming, the best way is to order a piece or pieces of jewelry by the last week of November until the first week of December to guarantee you can have it by the holidays.

Want check out more of Vina Amor?  Take a look at the website, http://www.vinaamor.com/.

Photos courtesy of Verna Fogg 

Buddy the Elf Comes To Broadway


Buffalo two step over Rockettes, this year Buddy the elf descends on Manhattan to spread some hilarious holiday cheer to the world’s most impatient, rude and skeptical citizens.  This Christmas, Broadway gets into the ho-ho-ho spirit of the holidays in a major way with Elf, a new musical based on the 2003 comedy starring Zooey Deschanel, James Caan and the hysterical Will Ferrell. 

Much like the movie Elf tells the story of Buddy, a human who grows up in Christmastown amongst Santa and his elves and believes he too is an elf.  Upon discovering that he is actually human, he also learns his father is Walter Hobbs – a man that does not believe in Santa, is on Santa’s naughty list and lives in New York City.  Determined to build a connection with his father and prove that he is the world’s greatest son, Buddy sets out for the Big Apple to find Walter and spread the spirit of Christmas to New Yorkers – a necessary commodity considering Santa’s sleigh is powered by the people’s belief in Christmas. 


Upon arriving in New York City Buddy finds that his father has a new family, a demanding job publishing children’s books and has no time for them or him.  Eventually, Buddy does develop a relationship with his family, and along the way he delivers Christmas cheer to Macy’s, falls in love with a girl, gives his dad a great idea for new Christmas tale and helps raise Santa sleigh after he crashes in Central Park by convincing New Yorkers to believe in Santa and the true meaning of Christmas.

Elf is not just a regurgitated story with song and dance routines crammed haphazardly throughout the show, instead it is a cultivated production enhanced by super cute music and lyrics.  Songs like “Christmastown”, “A Christmas Song”, “Never Fall in Love” and “The Story of Buddy the Elf” are catchy tunes that will add to your roster of favorite X-Mas jingles.  The simple choreography works well with the upbeat music.  Elf is not overly complicated theatre.  It is a feel good family musical about the most wonderful time of the year.  And the cast help to make this make this musical an above average film to theatre adaptation.


Sebastian Arcelus is a delight as the naïve, sugary sweet Buddy.  His childlike demeanor is endearing and hilarious.   Amy Spanger is entertaining as Jovie, Buddy’s love interest.  Mark Jacoby as amusing as Walter Hobbs, the hard-ass that discovers he has a new son and a heart.  Beth Leavel and Matthew Gumley are equally enjoyable as Emily and Michael Hobbs.  Their duets are two of the best numbers in the show.  George Wendt as Santa can bring a smile to anyone’s face.  The sets are interactive and animated and are reminiscent of a children’s 3D pop up book.



The true charm of this production is that it is giddy, warm-hearted and leaves you with cozy, nostalgic feelings about Christmas – a necessary commodity since Christmas today seems more about ensuring retailers make their bottom line than spending time with loved ones, showing kindness to your neighbor and the birth of Jesus.  Elf is playing at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre until January 2 and will bring out the kid in everyone.  I recommend it for anyone that needs a good ole dose of Christmas spirit.  You will have Sparklejollytwinklejingley time!

Photos: Joan Marcus

F.A.M.E NYC Celebrates Its First Anniversary


On November 16, F.A.M.E NYC celebrates its first anniversary.  As the editor and founder of F.A.M.E NYC, today is a day of reflection.  Although the decision to start F.A.M.E NYC came from the need to comment on New York City’s underground house scene, the true genesis of F.A.M.E NYC began long ago when I was a girl.  On Saturdays, my mom would go to work and my dad and I would jet off to Manhattan.  My father loves to build things and create art, so each Saturday we would end up in the Village – trolling around the stores to find fabrics, beads, posters and trinkets of all sorts that could be used in his creations.  Greenwich Village had been my father’s haven for decades and he passed his affinity for the city to me.  After we had late lunch, we would go and pick up my mom.  Our Saturdays in the Big Apple continued for years and became our weekend ritual.  Eventually, my mom changed jobs and began to join us on our NYC excursions.  As a family we visited The World Trade Center, Central Park, The Statue of Liberty, The Met, MOMA, Washington Square Park, American Museum of Natural History, Battery Park, Harlem and Times Square. 

It was the 80’s and New York City was a different place from the rainbow lit veneer that tourists see today.  New York City was not pretentious, it was raw and gritty.  The subways were littered with graffiti, the meatpacking district was a den of sin, Times Square was truly a place where the dregs and elite of society would meet in symbiotic disharmony, Washington Square Park was the place to go to see the best street entertainers and get your puff on, LES a thriving community of artists, performers and drug addicts and at night you carried your keys in your hand like a weapon.  The threat of danger at night was very palpable, possibly even alluring.  For me it was addicting.  On Monday mornings, I would go back to school eager tell my friends about my NYC adventures with my parents.

When it was time to continue my education after high school, I studied Fashion Merchandising in New York City.  I became part of the millions of strap-hanging commuters, coffee in hand, walking 80 mph to my destination.  It was then that I became a New Yorker.  When I started hanging out I discovered another layer of Manhattan, the underground where I chose to stay.   I have seen NYC change dramatically since I was a girl, but there is one constant that has not change, New York City is still a Mecca for creativity.  New York City still dictates what is hot in fashion, music, and the arts.  Regardless of the success people may achieve in other places, people still migrate to Manhattan to make a splash in the pond next to the Hudson River.  And it is my responsibility to bring you the best New York City has to offer.

One year ago I asked my FAMERS to come on this journey with me and you have.  I want to thank you for inspiring me to continue to report about the New York City I have been privileged to witness everyday.  Thank you for your comments and continued support.  F.A.M.E NYC was created to present you with the people, places and events that make New York City a hub for fashion, arts, music and entertainment.  It will continue to serve as a bridge that will connect stories about the most notable New Yorkers as well as burgeoning New Yorkers creating a buzz in their field.  I have been blessed to meet and interview many wonderful, talented people and attend myriad events and shows.  As 2010 quickly marches to its end, I vow to keep F.A.M.E NYC growing with excellent content. 

As I extend my heartfelt gratitude, I also have a request.  I humbly ask my FAMERS to continue on this journey with me and tell a friend – hell, tell many friends.  It is because of you F.A.M.E NYC has seen the success that it has, let’s shoot for the stratosphere next year!

F.A.M.E NYC Editor

Pinta Brings Premiere Latin Artists to NYC

From November 11 to 14, Pier 92 played host to Pinta The Modern & Contemporary Latin American Art Show.   The artwork was divided in three sections: the Galleries, Solo Exhibitions and Art Projects with selections by curator Pablo Leon de la Barra.  Galleries from the U.S., Europe and Latin America presented abstract, concrete, neo-concrete, kinetic and conceptual art, as well as of other contemporary art movements. The works hailed from Chile, Argentina, Mexico, Columbia, Brazil, Bolivia, Venezuela and Cuba.  During the opening, patrons sipped wine and ate popcorn from jars strategically placed throughout the venue. Displaying various mediums and providing a consistent platform to showcase Latino artists, it is my belief that Pinta NY 2010 was a triumph.

F.A.M.E NYC Model Profile

Christian Brown

During Fashion Week I get the opportunity to meet and converse with myriad people, but this September was the first time I talked with a human mannequin.  American Apothecary’s Fashion Week event at Hells Kitchen, located on 9th Street, boasted trendy, fashion forward t-shirts, a signature drink and models draped in their gear; Mr. Brown was one of them.  Even with a plethora of NYC’s fashionable chatting, drinking and moving about, Chris Brown’s earnest face and virile physique were noticeably obvious. 

Chris is a native of Washington Heights where his future was constantly prophesied, “Since I can remember people have always approached me and assumed I was a model or that I should model,” he says.  While working on the film Just Wright, Chris’ dreams and future finally collided.  He made friends with Mehcad Brooks, one of the stars of the movie, who persuaded him to take acting/modeling seriously.  “A person of his status telling me [I had potential] gave me the push I needed to go all out and chase my dreams,” he says.   Chris also credits PR maven John Thompson II with showing him the ins and outs of the modeling industry as well as connecting him with good photographers.

This past summer Chris signed with Silver Models and has worked with Poetik Design- by Nicklaus Jones, N8KD- Desi Adorn, WashHouse Jeans- by Danny “Moya” Reyes and Combat Pro uniforms for Nike.  He described booking his first job as “getting the monkey off my back.”  “In this business there is a lot of rejection,” he adds, “but from that point on I knew I would book other jobs and it solidified me as a working model.”  As Chris is aware of the rejection that comes with the business, he is also cognizant of the challenges people of color face in the fashion industry.   Although names and faces like Iman, Tyson Beckford, Naomi and Tyra have become legends, the road they paved is still an uphill one and the industry is slow to welcome change.  “Ethnic models in this industry are often immediately labeled and put into the urban category and that limits prospective work,” Chris says.   “Those who do break out of “label” are often recycled. You will see the same models and actors in campaigns, television shows and movies.”

Although this fact may stop some, Chris’ determination is as solid as his chiseled arms.  He refuses to let the self-doubt or negative responses derail him from his goals of modeling and acting.  Chris uses a quote by William Shakespeare that personifies his will to succeed, “Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we often might win, by fearing to attempt.” 

Tell me your favorite memory from high  school.                                                 

My favorite memory from high school is winning the NYC and State Catholic High School championship. My Rice High School brothers/teammates and I had a blast that season. We ran through the Catholic High School league finishing 28-1, finishing number one in the tri-state and number three in the nation.

Describe the perfect first date.                                                                                                                             

The perfect first date would have to be a candle lit dinner outside at night, eating amazing food sipping on wine and having deep conversation.

Boxers, Briefs, Boxer/Briefs or Commando?                                                                                             


Describe your grooming techniques.

Clean cut, neat and fashion forward

Favorite Drink  


Favorite Designer                                                                                                                                    

Ralph Lauren/ Sean John

Sex on the first date or not                                                                                                                                    

All depends on the vibe. If two grown people hit it off at the right place/right time and most importantly it feels right- why not?

The one item that has to go into your luggage                                                                                                              


Paris, Milan or Tokyo?                                                                                     

All three, I love to travel

Give us a model secret                                                                                                                                                

If I tell you, then it wouldn’t be a secret

Photos/Slideshow:  Desi Adorn, Arturo Lorde, Oleg Lugovskoy, Luis Morillo, Joanna Pena, Max the Photographer, Candita Robinson, Jason Rodriguez    

To see more of Christian Brown, visit, www.whoischristianbrown.com.