We sit down for an exclusive interview with modeling breakthrough star Matthias Páv at Models 1 to talk about his beginnings, modeling and bio engineering as well as 10 years from now.
Read more after the jump:
How were you discovered?
I was 16 and on a holiday with my family in Sheffield. I remember that’s the first time somebody approached me. As I didn’t really understand what it was about I presume I lost interest really quickly and went on with my day. Few years later my brother’s girlfriend at the time, who was a model, told me I had to find an agency and somehow that summer I started to get scouted multiple times on different festivals, each time in my most glorious state… First time on the festival “Couleur Café” in my hometown, Brussels.
What have you learnt from the modelling industry?
The industry taught me so much essential stuff about life, things school and Uni would never teach you. In the beginning it taught me to be independent and strong minded, you really have to develop a thick skin and learn to handle criticism good or bad. You can’t let anyone tell you that you’re not good enough, and at the same time you can’t start thinking too much of yourself or that you would be somehow better than others. I learned that the real world is an unforgiving place, making mistakes, missing opportunities and making wrong choices are things with real life consequences, and things you’ll have to deal with. Life is not an exam that you can redo as you please, so you better not procrastinate the learning.
Did becoming a model change your life in any way?
Yes, it absolutely did… in so many different ways. I grew up in the country side near Brussels, went to the local Christian school, and my world was generally really small. But I always had this feeling I had a lot more to offer creatively and expression wise. I started bio engineering at Uni and even though I did fairly well, something was missing and that got me into a bit of a low point in my life. The first time I went to Milan turned things around for me majorly. This might sound like common knowledge, but for me at that time it wasn’t, I discovered there a whole new world with amazing people, and unlimited opportunities. I felt like I can finally channel my energy outwards and constantly grow as a person.
Best modelling advice?
Come on time, be friendly, respectful and most importantly always try to leave a good impression.
What’s no fun?
I genuinely love modelling, so this is a hard one. One thing I can say is that because we receive many messages and sometimes scattered over different mediums like whatsapp, email and texts there are sometimes a couple of intermediary people before the information reaches you, a miscommunication happens way too often, and if it’s about serious stuff like the time and place of a big casting or job, that’s no fun indeed but other than that, which is minor to be honest, I really can’t see anything bad to say.
How would you describe your style?
I would describe it as simple but fitting for the pants and t-shirt’s. However I like to put a lot of thoughts and go crazy on the jackets and the shoes. Overall I don’t exactly follow the trends in terms of brands and prints, I usually spot one of my favorite artist wearing something that I absolutely want, and then I’ll search for the item until I find it.
Who are your favourite designers?
I think the fellow Belgian Raf Simons is a genius. I always admired Karl Lagerfeld, his story and the fact that he managed to stay on top to this day. I love Gucci and Prada clothes, so Miuccia Prada and Alessandro Michele for sure too. Obviously I shop my clothes in more accessible stores like COS, Zara and H&M. The past year however I’ve been buying non stop on ASOS since I’ve discovered they had a tall section. Some new brands I absolutely love are MISBHV, Palms Angels, MXDVS, Vetements, Acne Studios.
Do you do anything to your hair?
Since I cut my hair shorter in September I’ve been experimenting because before I didn’t use anything else then a good shower. This week I’ve been blessed by Models 1 with a jar wax, which is working pretty good for me actually.
What are your beauty essentials?
I’ve been told I have somewhat of a dry skin, so I’ve been putting moisturizer on my face before going to bed as it is my mother’s ritual. Nothing else really except a clean shave before a job or casting day.
Name the famous person you’d most like to meet?
This is very unoriginal, but it’d be insane to meet Leonardo Dicaprio, I watched all his movies since he was a little boy, he plays roles that only he can do like in “the basketball diaries” and “the revenant” or even when he played a mentally impaired younger brother of Johnny Depp in “what’s eating gilbert”. I mean…who else can pull of so many diverse type of roles?
Your personal passion or hidden talents?
My number one passion in life is wildlife and the fact that Leonardo is using his voice for nature and wildlife conservation and climate change makes me love him so much more. I think we’d have a solid chat.
I read entire encyclopedias about animals when I was younger like they were books and I’ve been diving from a very early age when travelling with my parents. Recently went to South Africa to work with endangered species like Cheetah, Tigers, Pygmy Hippo’s and lemurs. There my love for animals was confirmed, and it became very clear to me that doing something surrounding wildlife will make me happy in life. Keep an eye out for the videos I made there, I’ll upload them to YouTube soon.
Also I’ve been told i’m quite creative, I’ve been in the art academy even before i was supposed to age wise, Feel free to take a look on my Instagram. I’m passionate about music too, I’ve been classically trained signing and playing guitar at the academy of music and went from there to the electric guitar and being interested in various music genres till this day.
What is your downtime like?
My downtime is different depending on where I am, if I’m at home for sure it be watching a movie, a TV show or a documentary whilst working on my art, editing video’s or just doing something creatively. That’s my comfort zone and I could do that for hours on end. However if I’m in a big city i’m always outside during my free time, hanging out with friends or exploring wherever I am.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years from now?
If everything goes somewhat smoothly 10 years from now I’d see myself doing or beginning to do what I love, and that would be to work with, present or protect wildlife in whatever kind of way. Doing something in the entertainment and education industry or doing something with my bio engineering degree working on future problems that my generation will have to face like resource, crop land and food scarcity. Right now I’m working hard to make sure I’ll achieve my goals, and if I do, I’ll be able to give back to the people that are important to me and/or have supported and stood by me. Also hopefully I’ll have found someone that I deeply care about, but if not i’ll still have time, I’m not in a rush. The most important thing for me is that 10 years from now I want to know I’d lived my best possible life when i was younger and that is my goal for now.
Keep up With Matthias on Instagram @pavlofsky
Photographer Edward Cooke
Stylist Daniel Jones
Model Matthias Páv at Models 1
The January 2019 issue is out in print and digital – get your copy.