ARTICLE PATRIK SANDBERG
PHOTOGRAPHY KARL LAGERFELD
AS SOUTH KOREA’S MOST SOCIAL CELEBRITY, SIWON CHOI IS ACCUSTOMED TO ATTENTION. NOW THE ACTOR, MODEL, SINGER, AND CROWN PRINCE OF K-POP MEETS HIS MATCH: THE LENS OF KARL LAGERFELD
Since joining the Korean pop group super Junior as one of 12 members in 2005, singer, actor, and model Siwon Choi has emerged as an icon without parallel in the ever- expanding culture of K-Pop. Also part of the Chinese offshoot super Junior M, Siwon has been blazing a new trail by helping to export the glossy, surreal genre to neighboring countries and now the world. Being the first Korean celebrity to garner two million Twitter followers might have brought on an ego transformation of gigantic proportions, but this superstar firmly adheres to his religious roots and even plans to become a missionary. Here he talks to VMAN about keeping the faith.
What was it like to work with Karl?
SC Have you ever felt touched and impressed at the same time? I was so impressed by his nonstop exploration and his effort to try new things. I was impressed with his comfort, friendliness, and caring heart. We come from different backgrounds, but both of us like to try new things, so we had the same goal in mind.
You’ve modeled for Armani, Burberry, Lacoste, and other brands internationally. What is your relationship to the fashion industry in Korea?
SC I am very interested in fashion and get a lot of invitations. My schedule doesn’t allow me to attend most of the fashion weeks, but I try my best. I have a close relationship with a Korean designer named woo Young Mi. I like and respect her a lot, and she gives me a lot of good advice.
Having so many Twitter followers, how conscious are you of social media? What is your approach to using it as a tool to communicate?
SC I am thankful to all of the fans that give me attention. I think they like me because I share a lot of things online, like humorous photos and comments. I hope to make the world a better place with my fans, starting with just the little things. I think there are times when our words can cause trouble, so I try not to post any personal emotions on twitter.
What do you make of K-Pop’s current popularity internationally?
SC Honestly, I feel great, proud, and thankful. When a foreigner asks me about Korea they usually talk about famous food, like Kimchi and Bulgogi [laughs]. But now people are more aware of k-Pop, and I would like to think SUBER Junior is the leader. I’d like to thank all K-Pop lovers.
Do you have any dream of crossing over into American media and pop culture? Does anything intimidate you about finding fame in the U.S.?
SC I would love to cross over into the states, but nothing has been confirmed about my activities there. If I had any concerns about crossing over, maybe it would be jealousy from my Asian and Korean fans...just kidding! I would love to work in the states, and I would do it with all of my passion.
Have you experienced any downside to fame?
SC Sometimes I feel sad, but it isn’t difficult. As an entertainer you have a clear understanding of what you gain and what you lose. Because i am always exposed to the public, sometimes I can’t be myself. i get worried and sad when my family members are the ones hurt by what I do.
What is your philosophy on style? SC Confidence! Have confidence in your style. Don’t be timid, show yourself!
FASHION MICHAELA DOSAMANTES HAIR SAM MCKNIGHT GROOMING PETER PHILIPS MANICURE ANNY ERRANDONEA