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Why one of the first supermodels was forced to sell her body and did not live to see 30
Why one of the first supermodels was forced to sell her body and did not live to see 30

At the feet of Gia Carangi lay the whole world: the most eminent glossy publications were ready to pay big money just to decorate their covers, and photographers wishing to capture her lined up. It would seem that the girl was treated kindly by Fortune, who did not spare gifts for her: almost immediately, a simple teenager from Philadelphia achieved such success that even Vogue almost immediately offered cooperation. A couple of years later, Gia received the unspoken title of one of the first supermodels. But, alas, the ending of this story is terrible: at the end of her short life, Karanji was forced to sell her body and died, having lived only to the age of 26.

Difficult childhood

Gia Carangi as a child

Gia was born in 1960 in Philadelphia, USA. Her father kept a small cafe, and her mother devoted herself to raising three children: besides the girl, there were two more boys in the family. But the relationship between the parents could hardly be called cloudless: they often quarreled and scandalized, and soon my mother left her family and left. Then Karanji was only 11 years old. Subsequently, it was the parent who was accused of the spoiled fate of the model, and the relatives recalled that already in adolescence, Gia was a skillful manipulator, hiding behind the fact that she lacked maternal love.

Left without parental attention, the future star began to behave badly at school, disrupted lessons, and soon alcohol and marijuana entered her life. In addition, Gia became friends with the "Bowie Children" - a group of guys who copied the lifestyle of the famous musician. The very same girl in the singer liked the fact that he did not hide his unconventional preferences. It was then that Carangi came to the conclusion that she was not interested in guys.

Together with informal friends, the future star attended concerts and gay clubs. Needless to say, her behavior became completely uncontrollable. Then her mother, who, although she left her family, but still continued to be interested in their life, invited the youngest to try herself in modeling.

However, Gia, who had learned the taste of a carefree life, was in no hurry to occupy herself with business. However, the modeling world found her on its own. At one of the parties, stylist and photographer Maurice Tannenbaum drew attention to a girl with a beautiful face and folding figure. He quickly realized that there was a diamond in front of him that required cutting, and offered the girl to arrange a photo session for free. And after a while, a new friend brought Carangi to New York.

The path to fame and real success

Gia Carangi revolutionized the fashion world

In the late 70s and early 80s, blondes were in fashion, so it was difficult for brunettes to outshine blond beauties in popularity. But it was Karanji who laid the foundation for a new trend: she almost instantly managed to conquer the world of gloss. Having met Wilhelmina Cooper, a former model and owner of her own agency, Gia quickly enlisted the support of a new mentor. At first, there were not so many orders, but soon the model began to literally fall asleep with work: photographers liked the fact that she could almost instantly transform into any image.

In 1978, photographer Chris Von Wangijnheim suggested that Carangi be nude, and she agreed (a real challenge at the time).So the legendary pictures appeared, in which Gia stands naked behind a metal fence: the public was perplexed, and the modeling business was turned upside down.

The same

A year later, the girl's photos were adorned with Vogue, Cosmopolitan and other equally well-known publications. The model realized that now she can dictate the conditions herself: she agreed to take part only in those projects that are interesting to her, she could refuse a photo session if, for example, she did not like makeup. But, as it turned out, the problem was not only in the whims of the star, who quickly learned fame.

Sunset begins

Gia Carangi has appeared on the covers of the most popular glossy magazines

For the first time, the girl tried cocaine in the clubs that she visited after filming. Over time, the "light" drug replaced heroin. At first, Jia thought that this was just a way to relax, and she could quit at any time. But after the death of Wilhelmina Cooper, the usual prank turned into an obsession: it seemed to the model that these illegal substances were the only way to escape from grief.

Photographers soon began to suspect that Carangi's strange behavior was not at all related to star fever: the model could be late for shooting or did not come to them at all, get rude, behave extremely inadequately, use drugs while working and fall asleep during filming. In November 1980, Gia once again posed for the cover of Vogue, but in the pictures on her hands, she could clearly see the injection marks.

The model soon left the Wilhelmina agency and moved to Ford Models. But the famous company was able to endure the antics of the star for only three weeks. Then the girl realized that she needed to fight the addiction, but she did not have enough for a long time. After Chris Von Wangieinheim died in an accident, heroin became her constant companion.

At the same time, the girl constantly struggled with an aching feeling of loneliness. She did not hide her lesbian inclinations, for a long time she was in a relationship with makeup artist Sandy Linter. There were even rumors that she dated models Janice Dickens and Julia Foster. The latter recalled that once Gia came to her at night only to be hugged by her.

Gia Carangi with Sandy Linter

Karanji realized that her addiction would not lead to anything good and decided to put her career on hold in order to recover. In addition, she began to gain weight. The winter cover of Cosmo was the last for Gia: the public accused her of hiding her hands behind her back, trying to hide the injection marks. However, photographer Francesco Scavullo claimed that the model thus masked the pounds that appeared.

In the end, the photographers unanimously refused to work with yesterday's star. After all, once she even fell asleep with a cigarette during the shooting and burned her chest. The last straw was that during the filming in Africa, Jia was found with a large dose of drugs. Yielding to pressure from her relatives, Karanji declared herself bankrupt and again decided to be treated. But after rehabilitation in New York, no one was waiting for her. Therefore, the girl was forced to return to her native Philadelphia.

Sad end

Last photo by Gia Karanja. Here she is 26 years old

To somehow make ends meet, the girl was forced to get a job as a seller in a jeans store and a cashier in a supermarket. It seemed that the girl woke up an interest in life, and she even began to attend courses in photography and cinema. But soon the model disappeared from sight again.

In 1985, Gia returned to Atlantic City. But not a trace remained of the star who conquered the fashion world: heroin addiction intensified, and more and more doses were required. To raise money, Karanji started selling her body. She was raped and beaten several times, but she didn't care anymore.

In 1986, the girl ended up in a hospital with pneumonia, and after examinations it turned out that she had AIDS. And it was at this time that the model received what she always dreamed of: the attention of the mother, who spent all the time with her daughter.

In the last months of her life, Gia reconsidered her views, became religious and even wanted to make a film for children and the dangers of drugs.But it was not possible to carry out the plan: the girl's condition was rapidly deteriorating, and she could not even talk.

In fact, Karanja's body began to decompose before her death, and when the orderlies were taking her body to the morgue, part of the model's back simply fell off. The star was buried in a closed coffin, and her death was not advertised, because Gia became the first woman in America to die of AIDS, which meant disgrace to her family.

And in continuation of the theme, a story about what do the most famous top models of the 1990s look like and do today: Claudia Schiffer, Linda Evangelista and others.

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